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Crappy Album Covers #259 — Recordings of Enigmatic Individuals

Lee Harvey Oswald is one of many that lived during the days of the Kennedy assassination. That is, one of many Lee Harvey Oswalds. So at any rate, who the heck knows if this is the real Oswald? Of course, one of these Oswalds were killed days after the assassination by Jack Ruby. The Oswald, whom they refer to as the “lone nut”. I suspect that this is the Oswald the album claims to deal with.

It is hard to say if this LP made it as a “hit” record, even a short 3 years after the assassination in Dealy Plaza in Dallas.

Civil Rights activist. Co-founder of the Black Panthers. Author of the book “Barbecueing with Bobby”. Spokesperson for Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream. This is the enigma that is Bobby Seale.

This LP likely deals with the 1968 Democratic convention in Chicago. You see, Lyndon Johnson announced that he had enough of trying to fit into JFK’s shoes, and would not seek a second term. That meant that the democrats had to hold a convention to see who would lead. It was slim pickin’s, what with brother RFK assassinated also.

So what unity did the Democrats have after the Tet Offensive and the assassination of Rev. Martin Luther King? Not much. You got Hubert Humphrey, Eugene McCarthy, George McGovern, and Edwin Muskie. None of these people were a match for the opponent, Richard Nixon, who led a united Republican party to win the Presidential election.

The 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago was held in what has been described as a Potemkin-style setting, in a building with bulletproofed walls, and chain-linked fences topped by concertina wire surrounding the perimeter. Demonstrators, ranging from moderate to radical, who had a myriad of special causes, but with Tet and Martin Luther King fresh in their minds, had what was intended as a peaceful demonstration, but which ended up as being violent. It has been widely accepted that the Chicago Police and the Illinois National guard were the instigators, and even journalists were getting beaten up. Among the roughed-up journalists were Dan Rather, and Mike Wallace.

Among the arrested, tried and jailed were members of what became known as The Chicago Eight, a loosely-connected bunch whose most prominent members included Bobby Seale, Abbie Hoffman, and Jerry Rubin. The latter two were founders of the “Yippie” (YIP=Youth International Party) movement. Bobby Seale was not charged, although he was sentenced to 5 years for contempt of court, due to an outburst he had toward the presiding judge Julius Hoffman. The outburst was due to Seale being denied the attorney he wanted, and being denied the opportunity to represent himself. Seale was ordered bound, gagged, and chained to a chair for the remainder of the proceedings. Hence, the record cover. Because of the contempt of court charge, his trial was never heard, and the Chicago Eight became the Chicago Seven. The four-year sentence for contempt of court was one of the longest in the history of American jurisprudence for that charge.