Music

Song Premiere: The Rose Petals Get Real About the 'Good Old Days' on 'Military Man'

Dan Destiny

Los Angeles band The Rose Petals, fronted by songwriting partners Peter Donovan and Elijah Ocean, take off their rose-colored glasses in favor of a historical lens on the folk rock "Military Man," the latest release from the band's debut album American Grenadine.

Donovan says the song was written about the Eisenhower era and the false notion that there was ever a time when everyone was living the good life.

"American Grenadine is an album about American legends and tall tales, specifically those involving our Presidents and First Ladies. Most of these stories are inspired by actual events. But, over time, the details become tailored and exaggerated to the point of mythology - their subjects commemorated as our de facto American gods," Donavan tells Wide Open Country. "'Military Man' was written about General Dwight D. Eisenhower and the myth of the 1950s. The Eisenhower era is often remembered as a time of great prosperity. But in reality, not everybody was enjoying the good life. One in four Americans was living in poverty. However, after fleeing to the suburbs (via a brand new Interstate Highway System), the flourishing middle class was able to largely ignore the growing urban decay. Today, we usually think about the picket fences and the two-car garages. We wax poetic about the 'good old days.' We find the past much easier to digest through rose-colored glasses."

Listen to "Military Man" below.

The Rose Petals were formed in 2016, after Donovan embarked on a cross-country tour of U.S. Presidents' graves, which inspired pages and pages of lyrics.

American Grenadine was recorded at Mystic Trip Studios in L.A. with engineer Dan Destiny.

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Song Premiere: The Rose Petals Get Real About the 'Good Old Days' on 'Military Man'