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Vietnam War aka “The Rock ‘n’ Roll War”

Words and Images Courtesy of the Muse Writers Center

The Muse Writers Center offers a look back at the Vietnam era through the music we know by heart.

After watching the Ken Burns documentary on the Vietnam War, Jack Sommers traveled to Vietnam in May 2018 with several soldiers and Marines and following this trip he began writing stories on the war. Earlier this year, Jack approached The Muse with something to offer the community:

"While teaching war and culture has been a focus of my many years of teaching world history, I have been most interested in the enduring impact the Vietnam war has had on our generation. I look forward to talking about the personal experiences of those who served."

Jack's love of the music of the 60's and 70's inspired him to learn more about the impact the war had on the culture by examining and "listening" to the music. From the patriotic music during World War II of the Andrew Sisters and Glen Miller to the age of cynicism with rock and roll classics by Jimi Hendrix and Creedance Clearwater Revival.

"From hooch’s to juke boxes, from tape decks and bands, from cities to campuses, to even our darkened bedrooms this music reached deep into our psyche."

This musical tapestry will be on full display this May at The Muse:

"We Gotta Get Out of This Place" – Boomers look back to the music of the Vietnam War, a two-part series taking place on April 3oth and May 14th

This event is a celebration of the music that was so much a part of our lives. Jack, will be your D.J., will cue the “soundtrack” of the Vietnam War providing context and stories and pictures of the war years. Bring your buddies, sisters and brothers, moms and dads and we’ll have a terrific time. Feel free to sing along. We’ll conclude with a tribute to everyone who served during the war.

Open to all Military Veterans, Members, Families, and Friends.

Registration is strongly encouraged.

And for those interested in taking a little deeper look into the subject and want to historically understand the war in Vietnam and its music, Jack will lead

an interactive lecture and workshop on May 7th and May 21st at the Muse.

“What’s Going On?” – Understanding the music of the Vietnam Era

Jack looks forward to talking about the personal experiences of those who served.

"And if you are thinking of writing memoirs of your service, I look forward to encouraging you to do so. The fall of Saigon—ending the Vietnam War—happened on April 30, 1975, and for those who carry and still carry burdens from their war years I am very interested in collaborating with you to commemorate it."

Open to all Military Veterans, Active Members, Family, or Caretakers.

These free programs and other for all active duty, veterans, family, and caregivers of the U.S. Armed Forces is made possible in part through the National Endowment for the Arts.

The Muse Writers Center is the inclusive heart of the creative writing community in Southeastern Virginia. Please visit us at to learn more. The Muse is a 501(c)3 organization.

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