Saturday, May 25, 2024

Freda Payne Recalls Her Anti-War Song Banned by US Armed Forces Radio in 1971, Has A New Grammy Eligible Album


Freda Payne, looking sensational, did come to the Cutting Room in New York last night to celebrate publication of her memoir, “Band of Gold.” (She wrote it with Mark Bego.)

Even though her hits were mostly in the 70s, Freda has never stopped working for a minute. She has a new album out that should be nominated for a Grammy in Traditional R&B called “Let There Be Love.” (See the video below.) The album includes a duet with Johnny Mathis!

I asked Freda about her most important and political song, “Bring the Boys Home,” released in 1971 at the height of the Vietnam War. Even though it wasn’t written explicitly to be an anti war song it became one overnight.

“Richard Nixon sent Armed Forces Radio a letter telling them to play it, and they didn’t for a long time,” Freda recalled. “Ironically, the soldiers did hear it. And you can’t believe how many have come to me and said it the was song that got them through the Vietnam War.”

Some people feared the song would be the end of Freda’s career, but she continued making albums and touring without a break. She’ll appear at New York’s famed Birdland on November 22nd. If you listen to the new record, you’ll hear, she hasn’t missed a beat.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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