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Updated March 4th, 2014

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Pete Seeger, Folk Legend, Dead at 94

Seminal figure in American music influenced generations of musicians from Bob Dylan to Bruce Springsteen

By David Browne
January 28, 2014 5:15 AM ET

Pete Seeger, a seminal figure in American music who kept folk music alive and influenced generations of musicians from Bob Dylan to Bruce Springsteen, died Monday of natural causes in New York, his grandson confirmed to The New York Times. Seeger was 94.

 

As a solo performer, songwriter, interpreter, and member of the legendary folk band the Weavers, Seeger brought traditional and political songs to the mainstream over the course of his 70-year career. He wrote or co-wrote "If I Had a Hammer" (a hit for Peter, Paul and Mary) and "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?" (made famous by the Kingston Trio). The Byrds had a Number One hit with "Turn! Turn! Turn!," which Seeger had adapted from the Book of Ecclesiastes and set to music. In Seeger's hands, songs from Cuba ("Guantanamera") and South Africa ("Wimoweh") became beloved sing-along standards around the world, and "We Shall Overcome," a traditional gospel song that Seeger heard early in his career, was a regular part of his repertoire and a staple of civil rights rallies for decades to come.

Although Seeger didn't score a Top 40 hit on his own, the charts were never an indication of his overwhelming impact. His massive influence on music and message was never more obvious than at his 90th birthday concert at Madison Square Garden in 2009. Among those paying tribute to Seeger were Springsteen, Joan Baez, John Mellencamp, Dave Matthews, Emmylou Harris, Tom Morello, Ben Harper and Billy Bragg. "The history of Pete's life is the history of music changing the world," Tom Morello told RS in 2007.

A tall, strapping figure known for his crisp-as-a-mountain-stream singing and banjo playing, Seeger was also a walking, talking, strumming embodiment of the connection between folk song and leftist politics. Throughout his career, he participated in pro-union and civil rights events and protested wars and nuclear power. For his trouble – and his membership in the American Communist Party – Seeger was blacklisted by the House Un-American Activities Committee in the Fifties; to make ends meet, he had to play sometimes four concerts a day, for $25 each. "I still believe the only chance for the human race to survive is to give up such pleasures as war, racism and private profit," Seeger told RS in 1979, beliefs he held until his death.

Born May 3rd, 1919, in New York, Seeger had music and politics in his blood from the start. His father, Charles Seeger, who died in 1979, was an ethnomusicologist who taught at Yale and Julliard and was a very vocal critic of World War I. Although Pete attended preppie boarding schools, he discovered the banjo as a teenager and, after dropping out of Harvard in the late Thirties, worked for folklorist Alan Lomax in cataloguing and preserving traditional songs. Over the next few years, Seeger and other friends in New York formed the Almanac Singers, living in an early version of a commune in Greenwich Village. During this time, Seeger met and befriended Woody Guthrie, another member of the short-lived Almanacs.

In 1948, Seeger, along with Ronnie Gilbert, Lee Hays and Fred Hellerman, formed the Weavers. With their suits (the men), pearls (Gilbert) and smooth harmonies, the Weavers weren't remotely rough-and-tumble. But that merger of folk and polish allowed them to connect with a mass audience: Their version of Leadbelly's "Goodnight, Irene" went on to sell a then-astonishing two million copies in 1950. The group's repertoire also included "Wimoweh" and an Israeli folk song ("Tzena, Tzena, Tzena"); it could be argued that the Weavers, in their way, invented world music.

The Weavers' heyday didn't last long. Along with many others in the entertainment world, the group was blacklisted by the HUAC "anti-communist" witchhunt in 1952, which crippled the group financially and creatively. They reunited three years later, but Seeger left in 1958 after he refused to join them in a cigarette commercial. Seeger himself was found guilty of contempt (he refused to answer questions about his political beliefs at a HUAC hearing in Manhattan). "Dangerous Minstrel Nabbed Here," blared a New York Post headline, although Seeger's conviction was overturned on a technicality a year later.

Thanks to the publicity from his conviction and a new contract with Columbia Records (the latter courtesy of legendary A&R man John Hammond), Seeger's career and influence kicked back in during the Sixties. Dylan, Baez, Judy Collins and Peter, Paul and Mary were among the many new folk and socially conscious acts of the early 1960s who idolized Seeger. Songs like "Waist Deep in the Big Muddy," about the Vietnam War, showed Seeger still refused to shy away from politics in song. He was also incredibly prolific: Even before he left the Weavers, Seeger began recording on his own, and over the following decades he released dozens of collections of folk ballads, children's tunes and labor songs, along with guitar and banjo instructional discs and classic live albums like 1963's We Shall Overcome, recorded at Carnegie Hall.

The stage, not the studio, was Seeger's natural home. From the beginnings of his career, when he traveled around the South, Seeger was equally at home singing for African-American kids, summer campers, college students and Colbert Report audiences (he appeared on the show in the summer of 2012). Onstage, Seeger effortlessly wove together his vast repertoire of international songs, stories about his life, and his trademark audience sing-alongs. Seeger was never strident – a key to his longtime popularity – although he notoriously lost his cool at Bob Dylan's infamous Newport Folk Festival appearance in 1965. Seeing Dylan perform with an electric backup band, Seeger was incensed, either at the electricity or the overwhelming volume. (According to legend, Seeger grabbed an axe and tried to cut the cables, but others have disputed that account.) Later, Seeger called Dylan's performance "some of the most destructive music this side of hell."

Offstage Seeger helped clean up the Hudson River with his Clearwater Project, which began in the late Sixties. In recent years Seeger, who lived with his longtime wife Toshi at a house he built in New York's Hudson Valley, slowed down, but barely. He continued to record and tour. (In 2012, he released not one but two albums, one of them a tribute to Guthrie.) He also appeared at an Occupy rally in 2011.



Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/pete-seeger-folk-legend-dead-at-94-20140128#ixzz2rl3Zhe00
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dave's Resource Page Click here  Updated 7/15

United Way General Help


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211 is United Way's Strategic Partner offering a free information and social service referral hotline. If you are looking for services in the Portland/Vancouver metro area, please dial 2-1-1 on your phone for a toll-free call.

The rest of the links went to the web resource page, please click here to go to the page.

 

 

 

         
Next meeting date/times:
March 15th, 2014
W/S Shop Stewards 8:00 am
Steward Training 9:00 am
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Zenith Administrators for Cobra Benefits

888-286-3169

These are the administrators of your health benefits, you can call them to start you Cobra Medical benefits
if you need, call them and ask a bunch of questions.

*Dial*
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or click on the link www.211info.org

This is a most important call
one can make. It will open some doors for you to get the help you need.

This is United way's strategic partner in helping Families in Oregon & Washington

 

 

Labor's Community Service Agency, Inc.

Vickie Burns - Executive Director
directorlcsa@gmail.com

Eryn Byram - Office Manager
officemanagerlcsa@gmail.com

Labor’s Community Service Agency, Inc.

9955 S.E. Washington St
Portland Or 97216

(503) 231-4962
Fax: (503) 231-4963 
        

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


The IAM W24 Lodge

 

We are pleased to announce on July 1, 2011,
Machinists District Lodge W24
moved into our new location at:

25 Cornell Avenue, Gladstone, OR 97027
.

All lodge meetings previously held at the Portland office will be held at our new location!

 

**************************How to get there ************************

Going South: ON I-205 SOUTH:

Take the Gladstone Exit—Exit #11. At the stoplight, turn right. Go through another stoplight and a 4-way stop.
Go to the first street after the stop sign,
which is First Street and turn right. (Safeway is on the left.)

When you are on First Street, you will pass a large white building on the left, which is the Operating Engineers Union.

 They are on the corner of First Street and Cornell Avenue. Since Cornell Avenue is a one-way street, continue down First Street and go to Yale Street and turn left. Go one block to Clackamas Boulevard and turn left. Proceed one-half block and remain on the road as it curves to the left. You will see our building on the right, which is a large wooden building.

Our driveway is the first one on the right and there is a large wooden sign, which reads "Machinists District Lodge W24."

ON I-205 HEADING NORTH:

Take the Gladstone Exit—Exit #11. At the stoplight, turn left, which will take you back over the freeway. Go through two more stoplights and proceed to the third street on the right, which is First Street and turn right. (Safeway is on the left.)

When you are on First Street, you will pass a large white building on the left, which is the Operating Engineers Union. They are on the corner of First Street and Cornell Avenue.

Since Cornell Avenue is a one-way street, continue down First Street and go to Yale Street and turn left. Go one block to Clackamas Boulevard and turn left. Proceed one-half block and remain on the road as it curves to the left. You will see our building on the right, which is a large wooden building.

Our driveway is the first one on the right and there is a large wooden sign, which reads "Machinists District Lodge W24."

Our telephone numbers are: 503-238-5550 and 503-656-1475.

Office hours are: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.

We look forward to seeing you in our new home!

 

 

 

For Benefits/Retirement Questions,
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Contact Information
LL 1005
503-238-5550

Email:
iamll1005@yahoo.com

LL1005 Web Steward
Dwain Panian

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