The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #153529   Message #3596163
Posted By: GUEST,Bob Coltman
28-Jan-14 - 07:20 AM
Thread Name: Obit: Pete Seeger (1919-2014)
Subject: RE: Obit: Pete Seeger (1919-2014)
Pete meant everything to me when I was starting out in 1950. I had a guitar and was learning Burl Ives songs, but it was hearing the Weavers, then Pete's first Folkways LP that made me seek out a 5-string (they were rare then) and learn to play it.

I first saw Pete live at Woodstock, Vermont. Pete came to Dartmouth College in February 1956 at my behest (I'd co-founded a folksingers club with another picker, Dick Martz), gave a stirring concert. He borrowed my ax to chop a log for "Didn't Old John Cross the Water on His Knees," scared the pants off the college administration.

Over the years Pete has been there so many times and in so many places. I watched that Smothers Brothers show when he sang "Waist Deep in the Big Muddy." Vietnam and all the massed power of the US mil-industrial complex was on its horse and here was one lone voice finally breaking back into TV to sing about the Big Fool telling us to press on.

I was just reflecting this morning that, had it not been for Pete, the Weavers and Moe Asch's Folkways, it's possible there never could have been a folk movement on the scale and of the type that broke out in the 50s.

We're all here in large part because of Pete. Wow. I'm stunned and it will take a while to get used to a world without him. But of course he's still here, singing on in lots of us. They talk about us old folkies being Woody's children, but in a bigger and wider sense we're Pete's kids.

He fixed the world so it will never be the same. Singing on. Picking on. Don't forget.

Bob Coltman