Bruce Springsteen said it best when he said that of Pete Seeger, the banjo picking, earth loving, peace worshipping, fairness demanding troubadour of our times.
Never giving in, but never raising his hand in anger, Seeger has spent his life bringing good to everything he touches while the fearful, the cowards, the bigots, the maggots of our society tried to tear him down. He held his head high while they gnashed their teeth in sky is falling fashion.
What did these people fear? “Where Have All The Flowers Gone”, “This Land is Your Land”, “Turn, Turn, Turn”, and his dangerous banjo caused them to feel unsafe and build bomb shelters. Pete Seeger, the affable songster was the boogeyman.
Seeger used music and peace to bring people closer together. From introducing “We Shall Overcome” to Martin Luther King to saving the polluted Hudson River with the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, Seeger has always been about justice for people and for nature.
In January, Pete Seeger sang at the Inauguration of President Obama. What a turn of events. His political opponents from the 1950’s going forward are mostly dead, gone and forgotten.
In May, he turned 90. Musicians from every genre came out to honor him. They came out to honor seven plus decades of perseverance. They came out to honor the person who lived a life worth living.
He lives his music. He lives his message. His voice is not as strong. But, it’s never been about the strength of the voice. It’s been about the strength of the message. Sing on Pete.