In July 1970, as mass protests against the Vietnam War spread across the country in the wake of the invasion of Cambodia and the killings of demonstrators that spring at Kent State University, recording artist Edwin Starr hit No. 1 on the pop charts with a song called "War." (Its memorable refrain: "War - huhhh - what is it good for - absolutely nothing !")
Thirty-one years later, the song has been, um, re-interpreted to suit these sports-obsessed times of ours. The "artist" formerly known as linebacker Ray Lewis is out with a hip-hop version on CD just in time for the opening of the Ravens training camp. It's a fight song/marketing anthem full of human grunts and dog barks and rhythm tracks layered on rhythm tracks and the refrain: "War - huhhh - right here in Baltimore - every purple Sunday."
The 6-foot-1, 245-pound Lewis went into a recording studio on North Charles Street a couple Saturdays ago with a four-member singing group called Trezure and, with the help of a producer, spent about 14 hours laying down the vocal, trying to get it just right.