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Vietnam War veteran, educator, author to speak during Thursdays at the U

| Linda Tollefsrud and Diane Walkoff

Doug Bradley

Doug Bradley

Doug Bradley, a retired UW-Madison educator, author and veteran of the Vietnam War, will present “We Gotta Get Out of This Place: The Soundtrack of the Vietnam War” during the Thursdays at the U series Sept. 21 at the University of Wisconsin – Barron County.

The presentation will be from 12:30-1:30 p.m. in the Blue Hills Lecture Hall in Ritzinger Hall on the Rice Lake campus and will be livestreamed at

Bradley will discuss the role of popular music in the American experience in Vietnam; why U.S. troops turned to music as a way of connecting to each other and the world back home; and how it helped them cope with the complexities of the war they had been sent to fight. He also will demonstrate how music was important for every group of Vietnam veterans — Black and white, Latino and Native American, men and women, officers and “grunts.”

Who'll Stop the Rain book cover

Bradley was drafted into the U.S. Army in March 1970 and served as an information specialist (journalist) at the Army Hometown News Center in Kansas City, Missouri, and the U.S. Army Republic of Vietnam headquarters near Saigon. As a combat correspondent, he wrote for, and edited, The Army Reporter newspaper and Uptight magazine. Since his discharge in late 1971, he has worked, written, taught, lectured, volunteered, blogged and advocated on behalf of veterans and veteran-related issues.

Bradley worked at UW-Madison for three decades and has written three books: “DEROS Vietnam: Dispatches from the Air-Conditioned Jungle”; “We Gotta Get Out of This Place: The Soundtrack of the Vietnam War,” co-authored with UW-Madison professor Craig Werner; and “Who’ll Stop the Rain: Respect, Remembrance, and Reconciliation in Post-Vietnam America.” Bradley and Werner, whose book was named “Best Music Book of 2015” by Rolling Stone magazine, also co-taught a popular class at UW-Madison on the music of the Vietnam War.

The Thursdays at the U weekly series is free and open to the public thanks to support from the UW-Eau Claire – Barron County Foundation. Neither seating reservations nor parking permits are needed for campus guests. In addition to the livestream option, the recordings are archived on the Thursdays at the U webpage.

The next lecture in the series will be Sept. 28, with Alexander Townsend presenting “Braille for the Sighted.”

For more information about the series, call the campus at 715-788-6244 or email Dr. Linda Tollefsrud, the series organizer, at