Hall becomes first rocking Congressman

Jan. 7, 2007 at 6:55 PM

WASHINGTON, Jan. 7 (UPI) -- A longtime political activist, rocker John Hall of the band Orleans had made history, becoming the first rock 'n' roll musician in the U.S. Congress.

Hall, who enjoyed some success with the 1970s rock band, was sworn in as New York's 19 District representative in Congress Thursday, becoming the first rock musician to take such a post, The New York Times reported. The late Sonny Bono was a singer, the newspaper noted.

Those who know Hall during his days with the "Waking and Dreaming" rock group, remember him as someone who energetically embraced the political hotbed of the '70s.

"He would take the liberty of getting on the soapbox at a lot of concerts and go on a bit about nuclear power," Orleans bass guitarist Larry Hoppen said.

Hall's lack of political experience has some wondering if he will be able to handle the job.

"John was in a band and helped fight a dump, but there's a big difference between stopping a landfill and fighting issues like terrorism," area Republican legislator Robert T. Aiello said. "I wish him the best, but he absolutely has his work cut out for him."

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