Eclectic Collage: Music for Election Day 2020

Election Day has (finally) arrived. Here's Civic Nebraska's 2020 playlist to celebrate the most powerful way to participate in our democracy.


“This Land”
Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings

This take on the Woody Guthrie classic by these funk-soul standard-bearers is a perfect way to get things started on Election Day. If you have an early vote-at-home ballot, take it to a drop box today by 8 pm CST. If you vote in person, polls open at 8 am.

“Such Great Heights”
The Postal Service

Let’s hear it for our heroes in the U.S. Postal Service, who handled a history-making surge of early vote-at-home ballots this election season. Their hard work and diligence allowed Nebraska voters to soar to new heights in 2020. Thank you, USPS!

“Voice Yr Choice”
The Go! Team

If you still have questions about everything on which you’re voting, Civic Nebraska’s Decoding The Ballot can help you navigate your electoral choices. Our 2020 guide spells out the duties of each office, as well as terms of service and salary – and breaks down ballot initiatives into plain English.

“This Year”

Let’s face it, 2020 hasn’t exactly been chock-full of pleasant memories. Nebraskans and Americans of all stripes are eager to see their ballots counted so that, no matter what their political bent, they can put a silver lining on the year. Vote!

Langhorne Slim

There’s bound to be a lot of noise around the official count on Nov. 3 (and beyond). While concern is natural, keep in mind that a careful, deliberate count is good, not a sign that something is wrong. Here are 5 ways everyone can help Election Night go more smoothly.

Janelle Monáe 

This song appears on the soundtrack for the Amazon original film, All In: The Fight for Democracy. The film is a look at “the current activism against voter suppression; barriers to voting that most people don’t even know is a threat to their basic rights as citizens.” We highly recommend it.

“A Beautiful Noise”
Alicia Keys & Brandi Carlile 

This powerhouse duo says it straight – “A Beautiful Noise” is meant to encourage voter turnout. “Everyone has the power to make a beautiful noise and to lift others up with their voice. And now more than ever, we need to let those voices be heard by voting,” Keys said.

Chris Cornell 

With so much of this year’s electorate voting early, there are bound to be longer waits for clarity in some key races. Be sure to follow trustworthy news sources who will not “call” an election until a grand majority of ballots are counted. And be wary of candidates or surrogates who may claim premature victory.

“It’s the End of the World as We Know it (and I Feel Fine)”

Elections stir our passions as Americans. It’s easy as things crescendo to feel that Election Day is an end-all, be-all affair. But remember – the sun will come up on Nov. 4, regardless of the results. As Tammy Day put it, if your candidate doesn’t win, all is not lost. 

“Redemption Song”
Bob Marley

Faith in our systems is essential if we are to continue this American experiment. The United States appears to be on pace for record voter participation in 2020 – a sign of optimism and confidence in our institutions. Democracy only works if we believe it works. So no matter what happens, remember to keep the faith in our “civic” religion. 

“I Give You Power”
Arcade Fire & Mavis Staples

Voting is your superpower: Use it. And share your power with others – spread your enthusiasm about voting with your friends, family, co-workers, and social networks. Encourage them to vote if they have not yet done so. When this kind of power circulates among citizens, amazing things are possible. 

“Vote ‘Em Out”
Willie Nelson

As a nonpartisan organization, we hesitated sharing this little ditty from the legendary Willie Nelson for fear it sounded too partisan. Upon closer listen, though, we realized Willie could be talking about any candidate on any ballot. And he also pointz out that voting isn’t the end of the story – a citizen’s watchful eye is, as the saying goes, “the salvation of the state.”

“Closing Time”

Polls are open on Election Day from 8 am to 8 pm CST in Nebraska (7 am to 7 pm in the western parts of the state in Mountain Time). If you are in line to vote at 8 pm, do not leave – you must be given a ballot and allowed to vote. It’s the law. Call or text us at 402.890.5291 if you have any issues with your ballot on Election Day.

“Come Together”
The Beatles

After nearly every election, politicans give a nod to their opponents and pledge to work together. Neighbors and everyday Americans can, too. To do that, we have to talk and listen to one another again. We’ve assembled some of the best civil discourse tools around for you to utilize in a difficult conversation with neighbors, family members, and friends.

“America the Beautiful”
Ray Charles

This is probably the most singable of our anthems for all of us – at least, we would think so before hearing Ray Charles perform it to perfection. This American prayer asks a higher power to mend our country, while calling on Americans to crown our good with brotherhood. From sea to shining sea.

“This Land Is Your Land”
The Avett Bros.

We finish as we begin – with the Woody Guthrie classic. Scott and Seth Avett remind us that through it all, this land was made for you and me. 
Happy Election Day, Nebraska. VOTE!

Related Articles

Insights from Civic Nebraska’s statewide listening tour

Civic Nebraska recently embarked on a statewide listening tour to engage with Grand Island, North Platte, Scottsbluff/Gering, and Norfolk. The discussions illuminated the common strengths and the unique challenges faced by each area and provided insights into the state of civic engagement across Nebraska.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments


After School Programs

  • Sherman Elementary School

    5618 N 14th Ave.
    Omaha, NE 68110

  • Lewis and Clark Middle School

    6901 Burt St.
    Omaha, NE 68132

  • Lothrop Magnet Elementary

    3300 N. 22nd St.
    Omaha, NE 68110

  • Campbell Elementary School

    2200 Dodge St.
    Lincoln, NE 68521

  • Lincoln High School

    2229 J St.
    Lincoln, NE 68510

  • Lincoln Northeast High School

    2635 N. 63rd St.
    Lincoln, NE 68507