-I will be honest, principled, well-styled and romantic. I will struggle in solidarity with the working class, and will bring about a new awareness in my fellow youth. Culture will be my weapon and my friend. I do not fear it. I will "persist in turmoil, and finish in style".
The Modern Action Club was founded in 1994 in Santa Barbara, California, as a way of bringing political action back into the punk and mod scenes there. Although the S.B. local has shifted gears towards direct action against a growing white supremacist threat there, the basic idea behind the clubs remains the same: a shotgun remarriage of politics and popular music.
We say remarriage because we think it is impossible to separate the two. Though overzealous, close-minded preaching is not welcome anywhere, thoughtful, engaged discussion and action has always been an important part of youth culture. Whether it's TWO-TONE and RED WEDGE, the Oi Organizing Committee, HomoCore, RASH, Food Not Bombs, or Modern Action, our scenes have created many outlets for our social awareness.
This is because music and youth culture are inherently political. Whether or not we have spaces for shows, money for record labels, etc, etc, has to do with the politics and economics of our existence in the big mess we call the system. Look, you can say that you don't care about politics, but unless you are super rich, you are affected tremendously by political decisions, and by economic reality.
When we get together and organize our own bands and shows and labels, when we start listening to a style of black music that was a crucial part of a nation's virtual civil war (ska, reggae), we are making political decisions.
Though we at MAC take these issues seriously, we don't take ourselves so seriously. We also don't know exactly what we are doing. We know we want to unite mods, punks, skins and "rudies" (whatever that means) behind some sort of political project, and, more importantly, we want to get people talking and thinking about the politics of music and youth culture. But how do we do that?
By publishing the Adjuster, being silly, handing out literature at shows, talking to people, and supporting explicitly political bands like The Adjusters. We also hold our own shows, and help a political record label called rosa LUXEMBURG records. We'd like to develop relationships with other bands, especially ones from other scenes.