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Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)

WFDU - Ron Olesko 23 Aug 08 - 07:13 PM
Don Firth 23 Aug 08 - 07:53 PM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 23 Aug 08 - 10:12 PM
katlaughing 23 Aug 08 - 10:24 PM
katlaughing 23 Aug 08 - 10:40 PM
Cool Beans 24 Aug 08 - 01:53 PM
GUEST 25 Aug 08 - 10:34 AM
Anglo 25 Aug 08 - 09:29 PM
GUEST,mike cohen 26 Aug 08 - 12:40 PM
GUEST,Guest, David Jones 26 Aug 08 - 06:53 PM
GUEST,Arnie Solomon 27 Aug 08 - 04:26 PM
EBarnacle 28 Aug 08 - 10:34 AM
GUEST 16 Oct 08 - 03:57 PM
kytrad (Jean Ritchie) 16 Oct 08 - 09:13 PM
GUEST,Steve Shapiro 18 Oct 08 - 08:06 PM
Art Thieme 18 Oct 08 - 08:36 PM
GUEST,Joe Locker 20 Nov 08 - 05:06 PM
GUEST,Richard Kaplan 28 Mar 09 - 12:14 AM
GUEST,julianne sawinski 12 Jul 10 - 09:08 PM
GUEST,j 31 Aug 10 - 05:31 PM
GUEST,Aaron Kilberg 29 Dec 16 - 07:59 PM
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Subject: Obit: Lionel Kilberg
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 23 Aug 08 - 07:13 PM

I received this note from Laura Munzer, a member of Strings & Sings:

I am sorry to have to tell you that Lionel Kilberg died today, after a long illness. Funeral arrangements will be private, though there may be a memorial service at some point. For now, sing a song, and think of Lionel!

Lionel was one of the mainstays of the 50s and 60s NY folk scene, and produced Kate Wolf's first album.   He wrote thousands of songs, some better than others.   You might want to listen to some of them here: Lionel Kilberg    So Many Farewells seems sadly appropriate.

He will surely be missed!

Laura


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg
From: Don Firth
Date: 23 Aug 08 - 07:53 PM

I'm sorry to hear that.

Lionel moseyed through Seattle and was here for two or three weeks back in 1963 or 1964. He did a few guest shots in one of Seattle's better coffeehouses. Sang and played what he called a "Brownie bass." I never did catch on to the difference between a Brownie bass and any other washtub bass, but it worked.

He described the hundreds of times, when he was introduced to someone, that the person would cleverly say something like, "Lionel, eh? How are your trains?" This, under the assumption that they were being brilliantly original. It was so pandemic, Lionel said, that once he was introduced to someone else whose name was also Lionel. "The guy looked me straight in the eye and said 'Lionel, eh? How are your trains?' Then he sat down on the curb and cried!"

We had some pretty good song fests while he was here. He gave me a copy of one of his songbooks. Still have it. He did a gently hilarious song called "The Man Who Comes Around." Sort of talked it rather than sang it. He got a lot of requests for it.

There'll be some good singing in the celestial choir now, where they could use a good Brownie bass player. He'll keep 'em from getting too stuffy.

Funny man. Good man.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 23 Aug 08 - 10:12 PM

I wrote a bit more about Lionel on my website - www.ronolesko.blogspot.com


Included is a link to some samples of Lionel's songs


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Aug 08 - 10:24 PM

Thanks for the link. I am enjoying hearing his songs. Another person I was too young/middle earth to know about when growing up.

Condolences to his family and friends.

kat


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Aug 08 - 10:40 PM

What a beautiful voice! My grandson, Morgan, is going to love Uncle Lionel and the Too-Too Bird. What a loss!


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: Cool Beans
Date: 24 Aug 08 - 01:53 PM

I'd known of his work wiht the Shanty Boys and he had a folk music program on an FM station in New York when I was a student at Brooklyn College. This was back when FM stations were exotic. What was really cool was that he worked in the registrar's office at Brooklyn College so we who played and/or enjoyed folk music felt like we knew our own celebrity.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Aug 08 - 10:34 AM

I met Lionel at our mutual Chiropracter's once. It turned out we had a mutual friend who had sung in his group back in the 50's. He gave me several of his tapes and said he hoped I enjoyed them. I've been meaning to learn a couple of the songs. He seemed like a very nice guy.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: Anglo
Date: 25 Aug 08 - 09:29 PM

He was a very nice guy. I met him a few times, way back when, but hadn't seen him for many years. Very sad to hear the news, nice to be reminded of him.

RIP, Lionel.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST,mike cohen
Date: 26 Aug 08 - 12:40 PM

I played with Lionel in the Shantyboys for 15 years. On the day he died I was singing in a coffee house here in Friday Harbor and mentioned that we once had Lionel use a bagel as a Capo on his brownie bass.

We've been in touch over the years and he's sorely missed.

Mike Cohen


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST,Guest, David Jones
Date: 26 Aug 08 - 06:53 PM

Sad news. I remember Lionel very well. He gave me some of his recordings which I liked, and told stories of the singers of the Woody Guthrie generation, and of those early folk revival days. He sang and recorded with Shirley Keller, havn't heard of Shirley for awhile.
Lionel was warm, generous and genuine. Wish I had been in touch with him over these past years, but will be sure to sing a song for him.
David Jones


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST,Arnie Solomon
Date: 27 Aug 08 - 04:26 PM

Lionel Kilberg was one of my favorite people in the world. Most of the time that I spent with him was during my childhood when my brother Bruce and I traveled around with him. Some of my fondest memories include him taking Bruce and I to McDonald's, performing with him at coffehouses, and taking us to our first drive-in movie. I'll never forget these experiences. Lionel was very close to my family since he became very friendly with my father Ed Solomon, who was Roger Sprung's manager. My brother Bruce remained close with Lionel after I decided to move to North Carolina several years ago. He even stayed in our apartment in Brooklyn for a brief period and we had a lot of laughs! I know that he will be remembered as a very special individual with an incredible sense of humor who wrote very special songs! He even built a washtub bass for my brother to play. We always commented that if you were in a jam no matter how far away you were, Lionel would come and help you out!


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: EBarnacle
Date: 28 Aug 08 - 10:34 AM

Guest on 8/25 August was yours truly.

I told Pearl Meisner who used to sing with him and Lee Hoffman back in the 50's and 60's. She remembers him fondly and, by now, has called his widow.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 03:57 PM

Lionel was a beautiful human bieng who freely gave his love to all. It shows in the songs he wrote and in his singing.
I remember him in the 1960's singing in Washington Square Park in NYC. There was always a large crowd around. I also remember him singing on Saturday nights at the Henry Street Settlement songfests in NYC.
Lionel was a humanitarian. For many years he was social worker who helped abused children.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: kytrad (Jean Ritchie)
Date: 16 Oct 08 - 09:13 PM

He was a good friend of ours from the Long-ago Days, and I'm sorry that we lost touch as the years passed. Love and blessings to his family and friends.    Jean


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Subject: Re: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST,Steve Shapiro
Date: 18 Oct 08 - 08:06 PM

In the mid-1950s, The Shanty Boys were a mainstay on Oscar Brand's live radio program Folksong Festival on WNYC. I was a regular listener.

One song I think Lionel wrote was Get Out the Gatkes (long underwear), a silly song which I still sing every winter!

Once my little sister Grace
Said she itched just every place....

Get out the gatkes.
Get out the gatkes.
Get out the longest pair.
Some call them longjohns.
Some call them (snuggies?)
As long as they're warm
Who cares?

I met Lionel when he performed solo at a resort in the Catskills.
50+ years later, this remains a fond memory. Steve Shapiro


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: Art Thieme
Date: 18 Oct 08 - 08:36 PM

I think I met him at Camp Friedman in Connecticut one time when I was on staff there for a NY Pinewoods week. It is vague...
I recall he sent me a song he'd written when John Kennedy was assassinated. That collection is now at the Library Of Congress.

I wish I'd known Lionel better.

RIP
Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST,Joe Locker
Date: 20 Nov 08 - 05:06 PM

Because I now live in England, I have only recently learned of Lionel's death, thus the delayed response.

Lionel was one of the nicest, kindest, most generous people you'd ever want to meet. Just a couple of examples: when my wife and I got married in NYC in 1962, Lionel's mother had recently died. He then drove us out to the family house in Brooklyn, and asked us to take any utensils, plates, gadgets, etc. that we needed to set up home. We still have some of them. In the winters, after the picking season in the Square had finished, he used to host monthly Sunday afternoon sessions in his loft apartment near Houston Street. It was there that I saw Woody Guthrie, who was by then very ill - quite a shock, as I had only previously seen him in concert.

Lionel and I, along with my brother Willie and Jules Hansen, appear in the feature film "Greenwich Village Story" - which opens with a scene from the Square, showing us doing two full numbers. However once the story begins, you never see us again!

The Shanty Boys were an excellent and entertaining group. Roger Sprung's banjo picking was exciting, and Mike Cohen's singing and playing were top-notch, but the anchor was Lionel, whose mellow voice and witty comments really pulled them together. They used to give monthly late night concerts in the basement of the Youth Hostel building on West 8th Stree - where Mike worked. They also played in Carnegie Hall. Lionel gave my brother a Brownie bass, and luckily, I wound up with the fine Gibson SJ guitar that Mike used to play (I think it was actually Roger's) - it's the one pictured on their album cover.

More human beings like Lionel are needed. Sadly missed.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST,Richard Kaplan
Date: 28 Mar 09 - 12:14 AM

I knew Lionel a little differently than most of you. I met him around 1974 through a neighbor of his on Warren St. in Brooklyn - Nils Bruner. Nils' son Roland and I used to come in from Great Neck and spend weekends visiting all the people renovating their brownstones on the block. Lionel was one of them. This was before Brooklyn regained its cachet, and these weren't the noveau riche gentrifying the neighborhood. For two teens from the burbs that isolated block between Bond and Nevins was as amazing and surreal a place as imaginable.

I ended up spending 2-3 years of weekends, holidays and summers helping Lionel renovate his building. At night we'd walk his super-shy Samoyed "Blue" around the neighborhood, get McDonalds or soemthing e;se from the Bodega, and listen to casettes or reel tape of his shows on WNYC. He kept gallons of water in the fridge and drove a beat up old VW station wagon. He was truly kind and generous, though he wasn't meant to be a property owner.

It hurt when people took advantage of him, but he was part of the neighborhood, and it was a real island of civility in a then still reeling borough. I'm sorry to have heard of his passing.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST,julianne sawinski
Date: 12 Jul 10 - 09:08 PM

Yes he was really a good guy.   I worked fixing his basement with roland who i love dearly still. bless him, hope he had a lot of great kids.    Lionel was the music man and was very good to us and generous.   bless his heart.    I am sorry to be just now hearing about his passing altho i believe he is in heaven and has no time to worry about now.    2010   tell roland to call me sometime julianne2saw@yahoo.com    He was an urban pioneer, kilberg was, and across the street were the mandels, now where did kelly and the hubby go, houston/   and nils had a brownstone also.   it was a great place and time.    I hope all his tapes are being taken care of ,   he had it all.   Love J


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST,j
Date: 31 Aug 10 - 05:31 PM

richard kaplan   get nils to e me Julianne2saw@yahoo.com


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Subject: RE: Obit: Lionel Kilberg (Aug 2008)
From: GUEST,Aaron Kilberg
Date: 29 Dec 16 - 07:59 PM

Wow. My family is just reading this thread. All these years later.
Thank you all for your kind thoughts and Lionel stories. Lionel was first cousins with my father. Because he had no siblings - they were very close. And of the age difference between him and I - I always considered him more like an Uncle. He was all the things you all said here. Kind generous loving humanitarian all those things with a sweet singing voice to boot.
We were present in his last days and he passed away peacefully.
We just walked by his home in Brooklyn this past and stood in front reminiscing with my sons who all knew him. It was so peaceful for us to do this since there was no funeral or memorial service it was our closure. So to find this thread at this time is like Liomel reaching out to us again.
Best to all,
Aaron Kllberg


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