“Once upon a time, wasn’t singing a part of everyday life as much as talking, physical exercise, and religion? Our distant ancestors, wherever they were in this world, sang while pounding grain, paddling canoes, or walking long journeys. Can we begin to make our lives once more all of a piece? Finding the right songs and singing them over and over is a way to start. And when one person taps out a beat, while another leads into the melody, or when three people discover a harmony they never knew existed, or a crowd joins in on a chorus as though to raise the ceiling a few feet higher, then they also know there is hope for the world.”
― Pete Seeger
The world lost a uniquely generous spirit this week with the death of Pete Seeger. His 94 years were spent using music to serve people and the environment, encourage others to raise their voices wherever possible. Of course he attracted powerful enemies in Macarthy era USA, being placed on the black list, but he resolutely stuck to his principles, constantly bringing his songs to new audiences and lending support to the civil rights movement, the anti-war movement and many other causes. He was also an instrumental figure in preserving music history, elevating fellow artists like Leadbelly and Woody Guthrie and played a major roll in kickstarting the 1960s folk revival. Here are just some of the songs he will be remember by.
1. Where Have All the Flowers Gone
2. If I Had A Hammer
3. Turn Turn Turn
4. Waist Deep In The Big Muddy
5. We Shall Overcome