Music of People's Park

Marvin Gaye: “What’s Going On?”

The infamous May 1969 National Guard-police crackdown on the young radicals who had erected and begun to develop People’s Park as a freed/free space was memorialized by Obie Benson, a member of the popular Four Tops group of Detroit’s Motown. He later gave it to his superstar colleague Marvin Gaye. So, the next time that you hear or sing “What’s Going On?” remember that Gaye is singing about People’s Park.

adapted from the research of historian Paul Lee
Album cover of What's Going On by Marvin Gaye

Lil B: “People’s Park”

In 2022, rapper Lil B - born and raised in Berkeley - dropped “People’s Park” on YouTube:

DAHVEED’s new album “53 Years of Resistance”

Inspired by Lil B, local activist & filmmaker Dahveed spent weeks on Sproul talking to students about People’s Park & now released the album “53 Years of Resistance”:

For more music of People’s Park (53 years+) check out the book, People’s Park: Still Blooming. Often available for viewing at Chess Club on the corner of Telegraph and Haste St.