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Lost Radio Rounders: Political Songs

"Now I Am the Leader of Democracy"

(To the tune of "When I Was a Lad")
Recorded live in Valatie, N.Y.

The 1880 presidential campaign saw both major parties choose former generals to head their tickets. While Republican James Garfield had been a post war member of both the House of Representatives and Senate, Democrat Winfield Hancock had never been elected to public office.

In Gilbert & Sullivan’s light opera H.M.S. Pinafore the song “When I Was a Lad” told the tale of a desk jockey/civil servant’s improbable rise to become leader of the British Navy. “Leader of Democracy” flips the script as former field commander Hancock is taken to task for his complete lack of political experience, and mocked as an ignorant puppet of Democratic Party leaders.