Friday Playlist: Raise Your Voices

Protest songs.

I love protest songs that aren’t obvious or dogmatic. That sneak up on you with their power. That are great to listen to whether or not they had a message. Songs that bring us together, tell about our shared experiences and struggles. Songs that tie us to one another and force us to reckon with our common connectedness. That’s a good protest song. Here are 22 of my favorites.

Photo of Buffy Sainte-Marie from Ovation magazine, 1960.


Collage by Minna.

Sarah Sophie Flicker is a performer with and the creative director of the avant-garde political cabaret troupe the Citizens Band. She is also a film director, a writer, an activist, a mother, and an editor-at-large for Violet Magazine. Her political/film work can be seen at Lady Parts Justice and


  • Emma May 16th, 2014 11:04 PM

    Love this playlist! Also, FYI there is a typo I think at the description at the top. It says “osongs” instead of “songs” ;)

  • LikeDreamersDo May 16th, 2014 11:23 PM

    Protest playlist without Bob Dylan? Sadness. :’(

  • China May 17th, 2014 1:33 AM

    Thanks for this, amazing!!

  • bggirl May 17th, 2014 1:33 AM

    Great playlist! The only addition I would make is Read All About It by Emeli Saunde…it always moves me!

  • TessAnnesley May 17th, 2014 3:19 AM


  • elliecp May 17th, 2014 11:21 AM

    I love this! so inspirational right now

  • Berries May 18th, 2014 8:12 AM

    Eyes on the Prize by Mavis Staples and Going to A Town by Rufus Wainwright would also really fit the list, and something by Kanye West like Diamonds From Sierra Leone, and of course Born in the USA by Bruce Springsteen.

    I love protest songs! Will listen to this soon. <3

  • Vlada May 18th, 2014 6:10 PM

    Oh God! I replayed 19 and 21 way too many times, I think it’s unhealthy.
    Wait till I’m walking down my high school’s hall with “Respect” playing in my head, I think I should film it…

  • thatsbreathtaking May 18th, 2014 8:28 PM

    Also Ohio by Crosby Stills and Nash about the Kent State Killing. + another vote for Bob Dylan and Joan Baez.

  • ShockHorror May 23rd, 2014 11:28 AM

    Yay protest songs! My mum’s in a protest choir, they sing all sorts :L

    Can I also throw Grace Petrie into the mix? She sings amazing protest songs and beautiful love songs too. One that I particularly recommend is “Farewell to Welfare.”