The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #108772   Message #2274936
Posted By: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
28-Feb-08 - 01:25 PM
Thread Name: Pete Seeger's Power of Song-PBS, Feb 27
Subject: RE: Pete Seeger's Power of Song-PBS, Feb 27
I dispute none of the responses to my "warts and all comment." I merely point out that Pete Seeger, himself, was quoted in the article as saying that more of the "stupid things" he had done in his life could have been mentioned in the final product. I have no earthly idea what they might be and don't really care. None of it diminishes either the man or his accomplishments.

I would respond specifically to the comment regarding his communist days. I lived through the McCarthy era. I saw the hearings on early TV and knew the paranoia that was generated by the "red baiting" of those times. Friends were hurt, many for years afterward, simply by associating with others who may or may not have been socialists or communists. Everyone was scared to death of "the bomb" and Joe McCarthy made a toxic career out of exploiting it. Pete Seeger was not the only one to suffer. Josh White's career was nearly ended by this nonsense. Writers, artists and performers who had survived the great depression and World War II had their careers ruined simply because, at some point in the desperation of their earlier lives, they saw socialism or communism as a way to relieve the suffering of the people. Pete, unlike some others, kept his cool and just kept doing what he thought he had to do.

If not for him, I don't know how many of us would have ever been exposed to folk music or realized the power of song to move people.