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Champaign Mayor Makes MTV’s ‘Top Five’ List

Champaign's mayor now has a distinction shared by the late rock and roll singer turned U.S. Congressman Sonny Bono, the President of Haiti, and a leader of the band Midnight Oil.

MTV just came out with this list of the top five musicians with political credentials. At number five is Champaign Mayor Don Gerard, who had a 20-year tenure as a rock and roll artist. He performed with LeRoy Bach, who went on to play with Wilco, Liz Phair, and Iron & Wine.

Gerard was also in the 90's band 'Steve Pride and his Blood Kin' with former Wilco member, the late Jay Bennett. Gerard was also a founding member of the local band 'The Moon Seven Times.'

"At the time, it was a completely different landscape," he said. "I think for the most part we really wanted to make music, put gas in our van, have a couple of beers, meet some girls, and maybe you know, put out a record and sell a thousand copies. Back in the day, it was kind of innocent."

Gerard credits his music career for propelling him into public office.

"Politics is a lot like being in an independent band," he said. "You're trying to do your best. You're trying to put something out there that people are going to like, and you get out and try to promote it and spread the word, and try not to screw up."

Categories: Biography, Music