The Taxman and Jazz Radio

By Sam Brunson

Yesterday, driving my son to swim lessons, I flipped my radio to WDCB, Chicagoland’s jazz radio station. An organ trio was playing something that sounded vaguely familiar. And then they returned to the melody, and it was the Beatles’s “Taxman.” And just like that, two of my favorite things—jazz and taxes—intersected.

Several months ago, Leandra did a great post on the history and context of “Taxman.” And her post yesterday on taxes in a series of novels got me thinking about how often tax shows up in jazz. When I posted about the musical tax canon, I mentioned Fats Waller’s “We the People,” but here, I specifically wanted to look for jazz covers of “Taxman.” And I found two: Continue reading “The Taxman and Jazz Radio”

Tax Canon, Music Edition

A week and a half ago, Leandra posted some of the history and context of the Beatle’s “Taxman.” It got me thinking about something I’ve been wondering about for a while: what songs are out there that talk about tax?[fn1]

I’ve found a couple places that have addressed the question, but they’re all deficient. “Sound Opinions” did a show on the question this last April, but, in spite of calling it the “Tax Day Special,” they included songs about money broadly, not taxes specifically.

VH1 got the taxes (mostly) right (“Take the Money and Run” is a stretch for my purposes), but limited themselves to 10 songs, and all of the songs are rock songs. (Still, I’m going to steal several of theirs for this.)  Continue reading “Tax Canon, Music Edition”

Hi, My Name Is Sam

Like those who have introduced themselves before me, I’m thrilled to be part of this tax-blogging experiment.

I’m Sam Brunson, and I teach a couple of tax classes (as well as Business Organizations) at Loyola University Chicago. My research interests are relatively catholic when it comes to tax law, but the primary strands of my research have been trending in two directions: the intersection of tax and religion and the taxation of investment stuff (most recently, focusing on mutual funds and other RICs). I also like to look at tax fairness (especially in the investment branch) and standing to challenge tax laws (especially in the religion branch).

When I teach federal income tax, I always let my students know my background. Which is this: I entered college as a saxophone performance major, and graduated as an English major. It wasn’t until law school that I discovered that tax law was a thing, much less that tax law was my calling.  Continue reading “Hi, My Name Is Sam”