About The Song

So many songs in the catalog of Creedence Clearwater Revival, and the songbook of John Fogerty, have continued to echo through the ages. But one that made its Billboard Hot 100 debut on November 1, 1969 has not only become prominent among their signatures, but one of the most powerful protest messages in the rock annals. It’s the eloquent and potent diatribe “Fortunate Son.”
The song was one half of the first single from what was soon to become CCR’s fourth studio LP in the space of just 18 months, Willy and the Poor Boys. Without ever naming names in its evident anger, Fogerty’s lyric eloquently expressed the rage of the counter-culture of the time about America’s entanglement in Vietnam.
More than that, it railed at a political milieu in which so many of the country’s young men were being dispatched to their death (or in many other cases, as later became clear, their mental scarring), with little more than lip service from Washington and beyond. “The song speaks more to the unfairness of class than war itself,” Fogerty said later. “It’s the old saying about rich men making war and poor men having to fight them.”
“Fortunate Son” has continued to be a clarion call for social justice, but at the same time it has been repeatedly misinterpreted. For example, the song’s theme of privilege among those (born “silver spoon in hand”) who were able to leave the fighting to others was misappropriated by Donald Trump’s presidential campaign team. His use of it at a 2020 rally so enraged Fogerty that he issued a cease and desist order, and a statement in which he said Trump represented exactly the sort of individual that the song had described in the first place.

With some irony, the composition became the title of Fogerty’s 2015 autobiography, in which he pointed out that although he wrote the number in just 20 minutes, he had been having the thoughts that informed it for three or four years. “With this kind of song, you’re carrying a weighty, difficult subject,” he wrote. “I didn’t want the song to be pulled down into that ‘Now we’re serious; everybody get quiet’ place. If I was going to write a quote unquote protest song, a serious song, I didn’t want it to be a lame song.”
The song was a double A-side with Creedence’s “Down On The Corner” single, which charted a week ahead of it in the US and climbed to No.3. “Fortunate Son” peaked at No.14, but was later deservedly inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.



Some folks are born made to wave the flag
Hoo, they’re red, white and blue
And when the band plays “Hail to the chief”
Ooh, they point the cannon at you, Lord
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no senator’s son, son
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no furtunate one, no
Some folks are born silver spoon in hand
Lord, don’t they help themselves, Lord?
But when the taxman come to the door
Lord, the house lookin’ like a rummage sale, yeah
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no millionaire’s son, no, no
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no fortunate one, no
Yeah-yeah, some folks inherit star-spangled eyes
Hoo, they send you down to war, Lord
And when you ask ’em, “How much should we give?”
Hoo, they only answer, “More, more, more, more”
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no military son, son, Lord
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no fortunate one, one
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no fortunate one, no, no, no
It ain’t me, it ain’t me
I ain’t no fortunate son, no, no, no
It ain’t me, it ain’t me…

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