Folk Tuesday: Farewell, Pete

I don’t suppose life owed him anything after 94 years, but I doubt there’s a folkie out there who wasn’t a little sad today to learn that Pete Seeger had slipped away from us yesterday.

Worth noting: On her Facebook page today, Judy Collins reported that she had a gap in her ridiculously busy tour schedule that allowed her to be home in New York City for exactly one day — yesterday. So of course she went to visit her old friend in the hospital, held his hand, sang to him, gave him a kiss, and thanked him for the song above, which she recorded in 1963, and which she cites as the main reason she switched to 12-string guitar.

After Mary Travers died, I said something to the effect that you know you’re folk royalty when Judy Collins shows up to sing “Amazing Grace” at your funeral. When God arranges her itinerary so she can show up at your deathbed to hold your hand, kiss you goodbye, and sing one of your own songs to you as you’re dying? I’m gonna go ahead and read that as a big ol’ “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

If God is a folkie — and, really, why wouldn’t he be? — I’m betting as soon as Judy’s voice faded out, Mary’s faded in, segueing right into “If I Had a Hammer” to welcome him to a festival that makes Newport pale by comparison.

Emily

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