"I grew up with the folk songs of Pete Seeger. Big Bill and the political songs of Paul Robeson and the repertoire of ‘labour’ songs, ‘Joe Hill', "If I had a Hammer” ‘Michael Row’, ‘Little Boxes’ et al. He may have upset us younger folk when he turned into the axe wielding reactionary going after our beloved Dylan but we forgave him . . .eventually."
Pete Seger’s music has been covered by The Byrds and Joan Baez. His message has been mimicked by musicians like Tom Morello. For more than 70 years people have been listening to his music. Arlo Guthrie, the son of Woody Guthrie, shared his thoughts on the iconic singer today on Facebook.
Big O covers these things so well and there has been much written these past day or so but not least by my daughter's fellah, Rob Power, over at Music Radar
Arlo wrote that Seeger was a mentor, father figure, and most of all a friend to him during his life.
Guthrie writes on Facebook:
“I usually do a little meditation and prayer every night before I go to sleep – Just part of the routine. Last night, I decided to go visit Pete Seeger for a while, just to spend a little time together, it was around 9 PM. So I was sitting in my home in Florida, having a lovely chat with Pete, who was in a hospital in New York City. That’s the great thing about thoughts and prayers- You can go or be anywhere.
“I simply wanted him to know that I loved him dearly, like a father in some ways, a mentor in others and just as a dear friend a lot of the time. I’d grown up that way – loving the Seegers – Pete & Toshi and all their family.“I let him know I was having trouble writing his obituary (as I’d been asked) but it seemed just so silly and I couldn’t think of anything that didn’t sound trite or plain stupid. “They’ll say something appropriate in the news,” we agreed. We laughed, we talked, and I took my leave about 9:30 last night.
“Arlo” he said, sounding just like the man I’ve known all of my life, “I guess I’ll see ya later.” I’ve always loved the rising and falling inflections in his voice. “Pete,” I said. “I guess we will.” I turned off the light and closed my eyes and fell asleep until very early this morning, about 3 AM when the texts and phone calls started coming in from friends telling me Pete had passed away.
“Well, of course he passed away!” I’m telling everyone this morning. “But that doesn’t mean he’s gone.”
Big O post this nigh on complete concert set from Pete and another hero Big Bill Broonzy
and I can't put it any better than this:
midnightcafe reviewed a copy of this show in 2007:
There are many thoughts that come to mind when I hear the name Pete Seeger: Socialist, outspoken folkie, encyclopedic knowledge of music worldwide, compatriot to Woody Guthrie, Pinko-Commie, and axe-wielding madman running after an electrified Bob Dylan. It is his love and gift for folk music from around the globe, though, that I hope he will always be remembered.
Listening to Pete Seeger, in concert, is like being with a historian and archaeologist of the world’s music. He seems to know every song ever sung, and to be friends with their writers and singers. He is the soul of America, a true treasure trove of song.
|Picture of Pete Seeger with Big Bill Broonzy at Circle Pines Center in MI, 1957|
by John Glass, posted at berkshirefinearts.com - Thanks!
Just a note [of astonishment] if correct this picture dates Big Bill to the year before he died at 65.
Gosh he sure looks well for 65! No?
Rest easy Old Fellah! Time to put down the Hammer (and the Axe)