Top 35 Tom Morello Quotes of 2020

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“Charles Manson loved the Beatles but didn’t understand them. Governor Chris Christie loves Bruce Springsteen but doesn’t understand him. And Paul Ryan is clueless about his favorite band, Rage Against the Machine.”

― Tom Morello

“When I moved to Hollywood, I was expecting it to be this Mecca of extraordinarily talented musicians, and it was instead the era of Faster Pussycat and bands that had an appeal, but I couldn’t do anything like that. There’s nothing in my being that can do anything like that.”

― Tom Morello

“When you pick up a guitar, you don’t put down your First Amendment rights.”

― Tom Morello

“Progressive, radical, or even revolutionary change has always come from below.”

― Tom Morello

“I grew up on misogynist, devil-worshipping heavy metal music, and then it was groups like The Clash and Public Enemy that reminded me that there were a different set of ideas that could be expressed with great music.”

― Tom Morello

“I am not the least bit surprised that injustice persists. I’m also not surprised that resistance to injustice persists.”

― Tom Morello

“Music, I think, is best when it honestly explores personal demons, and it stirs around in the silt of the psyche to find out what’s really there.”

― Tom Morello

“The real estate agent had to go door-to-door in the apartment building we wanted to rent, asking if it was OK for this interracial family – my mom is white and I was a 1-year-old half-African kid – to live in the apartment building.”

― Tom Morello

“My music is – there’s no litmus test, there’s no political litmus test for listening to it – but I am never going to compromise one iota to satisfy with someone who’s uncomfortable with the ideas I feel in my heart.”

― Tom Morello

“As a guitar player, I’ve been influenced by dance music – it was Crystal Method and The Prodigy back in the day. I would listen to those textures and try to approximate them on the electric guitar.”

― Tom Morello

“The system under which we live is owned and operated by people who do not deserve to run the world.”

― Tom Morello

“We’ve been able to have our cake and eat it, too. Every song, every T-shirt, is absolutely a pure expression of what we want to do. And it connects.”

― Tom Morello

“I came late to the genre of folk music.”

― Tom Morello

“I was a fan of heavy music – first metal, then punk, then hip hop.”

― Tom Morello

“Then about 12 years ago it dawned on me that folk music – the music of Woody Guthrie and Phil Ochs, early Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Pete Seeger – could be as heavy as anything that comes through a Marshall stack. The combination of three chords and the right lyrical couplet can be as heavy as anything in the Metallica catalogue.”

― Tom Morello

“The way corporate media likes to portray America is as a homogenous whole that high-five’s each other at the Super Bowl. But what we have is a grotesque disparity between the rich and poor that is only getting wider.”

― Tom Morello

“My parents met in Kenya. My father is African, is Kenyan. The Kenyan side of my family was involved in the anti-colonial movement.”

― Tom Morello

“I didn’t grow up with my Kenyan family. I grew up in a small, conservative suburb of Chicago.”

― Tom Morello

“I literally integrated the small town of Libertyville, Illinois. I was the first person of color to reside within its borders.”

― Tom Morello

“Paul Ryan’s love of Rage Against the Machine is amusing, because he is the embodiment of the machine that our music has been raging against for two decades.”

― Tom Morello

“’Underrated.’ That is the word that best describes Prince, the Guitarist. Why? Because his phenomenal guitar-playing was just one arrow in a quiver full of remarkable talents.”

― Tom Morello

“There are many pop stars who are great performers – but there is no chart-topping pop star in history who could play guitar like Prince.”

― Tom Morello

“I saw ‘Purple Rain’ in the summer of ’84, and, ‘Spinal Tap’ notwithstanding, it’s the greatest rock & roll film of all time. There’s so much Prince coming at you that you have to remind yourself he’s also a breathtaking guitar player.”

― Tom Morello

“’Purple Rain,’ the album, is a great guitar record.”

― Tom Morello

“I’m a Chicago Cubs fan. I grew up in Libertyville, Illinois, and attended my first game at Wrigley Field when I was four.”

― Tom Morello

“In the salary-cap-free world of MLB, you get what you pay for… but only if you pay the most.”

― Tom Morello

“I am not a superstitious person.”

― Tom Morello

“Baseball is a business. Sure, we fans are wistful dreamers who fantasize about glory on the diamond, but to the people who hold the purse strings, the Cubs win the economic World Series every year.”

― Tom Morello

“I’ve played hundreds of protests. I’ve marched on dozens of picket lines. I’ve strummed my guitar at innumerable demonstrations.”

― Tom Morello

“I think that there are artists of different genres whose calling is to use their art to hope to affect and better the human condition – whether it’s System of a Down, or Rage Against the Machine, or Public Enemy, or the Clash, Bruce Springsteen, or Pete Seeger. It’s a group that I’m proud to be counted among.”

― Tom Morello

“The one thing that Hendrix had that is unique among extraordinary guitar players is he had songs that were on the radio. His guitar genius was exposed to the masses by ‘Foxy Lady.’”

― Tom Morello

“I named my son after Randy Rhoads – Rhoads Morello.”

― Tom Morello

“With guitar, I’d always mixed more sounds that occur in hip-hop, or occur on Crystal Method records, or occur at the zoo – so I’ve never been sort of tethered or have limited myself to the traditional rock n’ roll vocabulary.”

― Tom Morello

“My one wish for humanity is that everyone can become the person they were meant to be – what are the barriers to that? Often it’s crushing poverty or certain circumstances.”

― Tom Morello

“Racism is a problem, economic inequality is a problem, not enough rock n’ roll on the radio is a problem. But all those problems will become insignificant when the oceans rise in a way that threatens organised human activity.”

― Tom Morello
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