The recent tragic shooting spree at the Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, in which Wade Michael Page killed six people before killing himself after a shootout with police, has drawn attention to the shadowy world of white power music.
Page, a committed white supremacist and member of the Hammerskins, a hardcore racist skinhead group, was heavily involved in the white power music scene in the United States. He played in a number of white power bands over the previous 12 years, most prominently the bands Definite Hate and End Apathy.
Page was just one of hundreds of white supremacist musicians listened to by thousands of white supremacists in the United States and beyond. Today, white power music permeates the subculture of the white supremacist movement. Not all white supremacists enjoy white power music, but many of them do, especially neo-Nazis and racist skinheads. For listeners, white power music is not simply entertainment. It is music with a message, a medium used to express an ideology suffused with anger, hatred and violence.
ADL’s new report, The Sounds of Hate: The White Power Music Scene in the United States in 2012, details the current state of the white power music scene.