Pete Seeger, the iconclastic American singer, songwriter and social activist, who devoted his whole life to fight against social injustice, armed with a banjo, a guitar and the transformative power of song, has died , aged 94.
He lent his voice to the labor, peace and civil rights movements, being a musician and a revolutionary, his powerful songs helped soundtrack the 1960's protests, advocating for change, offering his services too in opposition to war and racism.
A Harvard College dropout, he became the indefatigable champion of the voiceless, at the same time almost single-handedly sparking the folk-musical revival,over the course of his long journey, despite blacklisting, even death threats, he never softened his core political beliefs. His dedication never wavered, his indomitable spirit, one to be celebrated.
Born at his grandparent's estate in Patterson, New Jersey on May 3, 1919, he was the son of a musicologist called Charles Seeger, and his mother was a violin teacher called Constance de Clyver Edson Seeger.
From meeting Woody Guthrie in the 1940's he was to be on the frontline of every key progressive crusade- from labor unions and migrant workers in the 1930's and 1940's,anti-fascist, the banning of nuclear weapons and opposition to the Cold War in the 1950's , civil rights and the anti-Vietnam War movement , environmental responsibility, opposition to South African apartheid, the oppression of the Palestinians in the present day, the occupy movements and a supporter of human rights throughout the world. Blacklisted by the media for more than a decade after tangling with the House of UnAmerican Activities Committe in 1955, at the height of McCarthyism, ad paranoid withchunts. He never stopped fighting, never stopped believing.
His legacy consists of over 80 albums, his influence on other musicians immeasureable, from Bob Dylan, to Rage Against the Machine bringing political and folk traditions to the masses, his contribution to the world cannot be overstated, inimitable and courageous, singing with defiance, inspiring countless generations.
It only takes one person to care, one person to make a difference, Pete Seeger, musician and activist did all these things with abundance.We shall overcome, someday soon, Pete Seeger R.I.P. Heddwch/peace.
A selection of my favourite Pete Seeger songs, there are so many wonderful ones to choose from.
Pete Seeger and the Almanac Singers- Solidarity Forever
Pete Seeger - Where have all the flowers gone.
Pete Seeger - If I had a hammer
Pete Seeger - Bells of Rhymney
Pete Seeger - To my old Brown Earth
Pete Seeger - Little Boxes
"IF THERE'S SOMETHING WRONG SPEAK UP"
"THIS BANJO SURROUNDS HATE AND FORCES IT TO SURRENDER"
"A GOOD SONG REMINDS US WHAT WE'RE FIGHTING FOR"