Iconic country western musician, actor and activist, Willie Nelson, recently released the animated music video for his political track, “Vote ‘Em Out.” Arriving just in time for the forthcoming 2020 presidential election, the video for “Vote ‘Em Out” premiered this past Friday September 25. According to a press release, “The message is even more topical today than when the song was first released in front of the 2018 midterms. Written with and produced by longtime collaborator Buddy Cannon, ‘Vote ‘Em Out’ finds Willie, joined by sons Lukas and Micah, describing the right to vote as a hard-won and sacred, putting the reins of power in the hands of the people.”
The animated music video opens with the red and white stripes of the U.S. flag blowing in the wind, as the viewer sees politicians hands shaking in front of the United States Capitol Building. The next scene pans to fingers crossed depicted on a television set, adjacent to a calendar marking November 3, 2020 as the official Election Day. The video then shows the overall message of the American people’s right to vote out elected officials they deem unfit to continue to hold office. The key reoccurring image in the video is casting a vote in an election box, followed by various ways to cast votes via mail and in person, if at all applicable, at local polling places.
Old symbolic political tools to promote voting are seen such as election pins and levers pulled on voting machines, as well as updated electronic machines are also featured in the video. Willie Nelson’s silhouette is repeatedly shown at a mic stand with a guitar in hand. Nelson performs in front of crowds either cheering him on or crowds shown in celebration if indeed the incumbent is voted out. To watch the animated video for “Vote ‘Em Out,” stream below, via YouTube.
As of late, Nelson is featured in the documentary Jimmy Carter: Rock & Roll President that focuses on former US President Jimmy Carter and his love for music during his administration. In the documentary, released last month, Carter confirms a legend once told in an autobiography of Nelson where the country singer, after being invited to perform at the White House, smoked a joint at the White House with a servant. However, Carter confirms the identity of that person to actually have been one of his sons. Nelson recently released his seventieth full-length studio album, First Rose of Spring, via Legacy Recordings, that was originally slated for release around the singer’s birthday in late April, but pushed back to July 3 due to COVID-19.