Rock and Roll President

Photo by Image courtesy of the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library
President Carter and Willie Nelson backstage at Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, MD (1980)
President Carter and Willie Nelson backstage at Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, MD (1980)

“When Willie Nelson wrote his autobiography, he confessed that he smoked pot in the White House when one night he was spending the night with me. And he says that his companion that shared the pot with him was one of the servants at the White House. That is not exactly true. It actually was one of my sons which he didn’t want to, you know, categorize as a pot smoker like him. There were some people who didn’t like my being deeply involved with Willie Nelson and Bob Dylan and disreputable rock and rollers, but I didn’t care about that because I was doing what I really believed. And the response, I think, from the followers of those musicians was much more influential than a few people who thought that being associated with Rock ‘n Roll and radical people was inappropriate for a president.”  Former President Jimmy Carter

 

“If it hadn’t been for a bottle of Scotch and a late-night visit from musician Gregg Allman, Jimmy Carter might never have been elected the 39th President of the United States. The documentary charts the mostly forgotten story of how Carter, a lover of all types of music, forged a tight bond with musicians Willie Nelson, the Allman Brothers, Bob Dylan and others. Low on campaign funds and lacking in name recognition, Carter relied on support from these artists to give him a crucial boost in the Democratic primaries. Once Carter was elected, the musicians became frequent guests in the White House. The surprisingly significant role that music played throughout Carter’s life and in his work becomes a thread in this engaging portrait of one of the most enigmatic Presidents in American history.”