Don't Want Your Millions
Country Standard Time, 2001 Instead of a Weaveresque, reverently straitlaced interpretation, Halker delivers a honky-tonkified message of protest. No Depression, May/June 2001, by Linda Ray This is the record to buy and learn. Halker's voice is clear and sure. ChicagoGigs.Com, April 2001, by Joe Fillipak Bucky's everything that comes to mind when I think of 'coffeehouse' and 'folk music.' Union News, Bloomington, IL, February 2001, by Mike Matejka There's a dash of Johnny Cash here on Woody Guthrie's 'Hard Travelin'' and some down-home bluegrass on 'Rebel Girl.' Cityview, Des Moines, IA, March 4, 2001, by Melanie Lageschutle . . . stick around for gems like Halker's take on Leadbelly's 'Bourgeois Blues.' Dirty Linen, October/November 2001 Maverick musician Halker grabs 14 excellent labor protest songs and puts them into a country/country-rock form that is incredibly appealing. From the Artist: For Rebel Girl's and Boy's who ain't so jaded as to think that what's good for Bill Gates is gonna be good for the rest of us. Built upon my knowledge of labor music and years of performing this material, the CD features labor protest songs from 1886-1950. Leadbelly, Hill, Guthrie and lesser known and anonymous writers. 'I looked around me and saw Pete Seeger, Utah Philips, and Joe Glazer getting older. I thought to myself, shit Bucky, you've been playin' Guthrie and Leadbelly since you were 16 and researching this music for over 25 years, why don't you just make a CD. You know more about these songs and have playin' 'em longer than anyone out there under 60. The torch is in your hands.' Thus became Don't Want Your Millions. European publications have given nothing but high praise to the record and it's been receiving heavy airplay. Backed by the Complete Unknowns, Studs Terkel, Robbie Fulks, and Don Stiernberg, also appear on the recording. About the Artist: He's tall, lanky, and angular, with a big guitar, a big voice, and big American songs. Singer, talker, teacher, and maybe part preacher. A student of history, a front man for a bar band. Folksinger, rocker, and alt-country twanger. A renaissance man in the era of the digital chip brain. Bucky Halker was born in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin in 1954, child of working-class parents riding the post-war upwardly mobile boom. He grew up in Wisconsin's hinterlands on the shores of Lake Superior. Ashland--blue-collar, iron ore and lumber town of declining fortunes. It's the mid 60's and Bucky's playin' bass on Hendrix, Cream, and original tunes in his band Freedom and discovering the sinful sounds of the acoustic guitar, folk music, Leadbelly, and Woody Guthrie. Anxious to grow longer hair, play the guitar, and take his skis down the mountains, he headed to a small college in Idaho. He played acoustic gigs in the area, pulled all-nighters in the name of studying history and the l! Iberal arts, and wrote songs in the John Prine-Steve Goodman-Woody Guthrie mold. In 1976, Bucky headed to graduate school at the University of Minnesota. He completed an MA and Ph.D. on American labor and working-class history. He also kept writing songs and gigging around Minneapolis-St. Paul. He got a teaching job in Idaho, got real serious about music, fell in love with the punk-new-wave thing, and didn't go back to the University of Minnesota again, except to defend his dissertation. After a couple years teaching college in Idaho, Bucky headed to Chicago in 1982 and to Ashland, Wisconsin for a couple years. He fronted a bar band and did acoustic gigs. In 1984 he released A Sense of Place, a album of acoustic originals. Step n' Blue, his second LP, a collection of acoustic and electric blues and folk songs, followed in 1986. Bucky taught at Albion College in Michigan, but when the funds for the position dried up he was back in Chicago. Bucky happened upon The Remainders, a! Band doing covers of tex-mex, zydeco, cajun, and New Orleans R&B tunes. The band became one of Chicago's popular bands in the early 1990s, garnered considerable media attention, and toured regionally. The Remainders dissolved in 1993 and released one disc, The Remainders. Bucky also continued other pursuits. He authored a book For Democracy, Workers, and God: Labor Song-Poems and Labor Protest, 1865-1895 (University of Illinois Press, 1991) and recorded a companion cassette American Labor Songs with commentary for the press two years later. He was invited to lecture and perform in Europe in 1990, a practice which has since become an annual event. Trekking across Europe with his guitar, the songs of American labor, his own compositions, and a train ticket, Bucky found a ready audience and critical acclaim for his work. In the fall of 1993 Bucky headed to the coast of Maine at the very moment his solo acoustic CD Human Geography came out. 'The Remainders had disbanded, I was m! ^#^ad at the glaciers for leaving Illinois flat, and I was dying to paddle a canoe and stack the firewood. Within a week I was writing new songs, fillin' the woodstove, and eatin' lobsters from the local traps. Trying to promote the record and get gigs was another matter all together. If I hadn't spent two months touring in Europe I would have starved.' Beautiful environments can be economically tough and Maine proved no exception. Back in Chicago the next fall and totally broke, Bucky boldly made plans for another CD. What followed was Passion, Politics, Love, a CD released in the US (Whitehouse, 1997) and Europe (Brambus, Switzerland, 1997). The recording drew rave reviews and got heavy airplay in the US, Belgium, Switzerland, and Austria. Bucky continues work on new music projects. For several years he's been doing concerts and lectures on American labor protest music. He's also been writing material on labor music for a variety of publications. Album Description: A collection of classic and lesser known American Labor Protest songs, including songs by Leadbelly, Woody Guthrie and Joe Hill, from 1865-1945. Featuring Special Guests: Studs Terkel and Robbie Fulks. There are two hidden tracks on the disk.