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Old 01-28-2014, 03:50 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Folk Singer & Political Activist Pete Seeger Dead at Age of 94

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Jan 28 (Reuters) - Pete Seeger, who helped create the modern American folk music movement, co-wrote enduring songs like "If I Had a Hammer" and in turn became a leading voice for social justice, died on Monday at the age of 94.

He was variously hailed in social and traditional media as a "hero", "America's conscience" and "A man of the people".

Seeger died of natural causes at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, his record company, Appleseed Recordings, said.

Seeger was well known for his liberal politics, working as an environmentalist, protesting against wars from Vietnam to Iraq. He was sentenced to prison for refusing to testify to Congress about his time in the Communist Party.

In January 2009, Seeger performed at a concert marking Barack Obama's presidential inauguration.

He then celebrated his 90th birthday in May of that year with a concert in New York's Madison Square Garden that drew 15,000 spectators and performers, including Bruce Springsteen, John Mellencamp, Emmylou Harris, Arlo Guthrie, Joan Baez and Kris Kristofferson. Proceeds went an environmental group Seeger founded.

"Like a ripple that keeps going out from a pond, Mr. Seeger's music will keep going out all over the world spreading the message of non-violence and peace and justice and equality for all," Jim Musselman of Appleseed Recordings said in a statement.

Seeger and Woody Guthrie started the Almanac Singers in the early 1940s and in 1949 Seeger was a founding member of another key folk group, the Weavers. Those groups opened the way for Bob Dylan and another generation of folk music singer/songwriters in the 1960s and '70s.

Bob Dylan & Pete Seeger at the Newport Folk Festival
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Old 01-29-2014, 08:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Well, thatīs a sad piece of news. How extraordinary that he lived to the age of 94, and was apparently on stage as recently as 6 months ago.

One of his many commendable actions was the stand he took against Congress in the McCarthy era. Hereīs a guy who didnīt just talk the talk, he also walked the walk. This ABC News tribute, though short, is pretty decent:



And this is the first song I ever heard from Pete Seeger; it was quite a hit for him in England. A model of clarity, it shows PSīs philosophy of delivering gentle, accessible but thought-provoking songs to his audience.I always assumed he wrote it, but it turns out toīve been by someone called Malvina Reynolds:



With some departed souls, you wonder if they do actually rest in peace, but after living such a full and decent life, Iīm pretty sure Pete Seeger will.
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Old 01-30-2014, 09:20 AM   #3 (permalink)
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He lived in the town 15 mins away from where I currently live.

He did a lot of activist work including trying to get the Hudson River cleaned up. I happen to be a stone's throw from the Hudson.
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Old 02-04-2014, 09:58 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Lisnaholic View Post
And this is the first song I ever heard from Pete Seeger; it was quite a hit for him in England. A model of clarity, it shows PSīs philosophy of delivering gentle, accessible but thought-provoking songs to his audience.I always assumed he wrote it, but it turns out toīve been by someone called Malvina Reynolds:

Malvina was a bit of an anomaly in the folk music world of the 50s and 60s, in that she was a white-haired, grandmotherly type when she broke on the scene. She wrote "Little Boxes" in 1962 when she was 62 years old.

The song first appeared within a year or so on a single by a group called The Womenfolk. At 1:03, it was the shortest song to ever make the American Billboard Hot 100.

British readers (and perhaps some in the US) will be familiar with two other songs written by Malvina Reynolds that had chart success: "Morningtown Ride" by The Seekers, and "What Have They Done to the Rain" by The Searchers.

The latter, a sad but beautiful lament depicting the aftermath of a nuclear war, gets my vote as the first true folk-rock song, predating The Byrds' "Mr. Tambourine Man" by nearly half a year.

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Old 02-04-2014, 02:04 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I have sung in hobo jungles, and I have sung for the Rockefellers, and I am proud that I have never refused to sing for anybody.
Pete Seeger
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Old 02-05-2014, 06:39 AM   #6 (permalink)
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@Rick360 : I was very interested to read your post about Malvina Reynolds. I hope you stick around because this forum could use some well-informed enthusiasts of folk, etc.
For other people like me who donīt know that Searchersīsong you mentioned, Iīm posting it here:-



@Gavin B : Thatīs a really nice quote from Pete Seeger; he was obviously a genuine egalitarian. I notice that he used the word jungle in the slang sense of campsite; I wonder if that slang is still current. To the best of my knowledge it never crossed the water to Britain, but then Iīve never hung out with hoboes so I wouldnīt know anyway.
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Old 02-21-2014, 09:11 PM   #7 (permalink)
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The dude was a legend.
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Old 03-02-2014, 02:52 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Wonderdful TV show with Pete Seeger with June Carter & Johnny cash as guests. Worth watching
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Old 03-11-2014, 12:23 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Wow! I assumed he past on along time ago, but hey we all got to go, and 94 ain't too shabby.
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Old 03-11-2014, 01:00 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Man that's sad!!! He was a amazing song writer!
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