Pete Seeger

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Pete Seeger

Manhattan, New York County (Manhattan), New York, USA
Death 27 Jan 2014 (aged 94)
New York, New York County (Manhattan), New York, USA
Burial Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend
Memorial ID 124254104 View Source
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Folk Singer, Songwriter, Social Activist. Interested in music his early days, his father was a musicologist and his mother was a violin teacher; both were on the faculty of the Juilliard School of Music in New York City, New York. He learned banjo, ukulele, and guitar by his teens and became interested in American folk-music when he was 16. He began working with noted folk archivist and field recorder Alan Lomax before traveling around the country learning rural music. He attended Harvard University and served in the United States Army in World War II. In the 1940s, he became a friend and singing associate of Woody Guthrie before forming “The Weavers”, which became an enormously popular folk quartet that popularized such folk standards as "On Top of Old Smokey" and Lead Belly’s "Goodnight Irene". In the 1950s his sympathies with humanitarian socialism led him to be blacklisted by the House Un-American Activities Committee, however he continued to perform wherever he could. Seeger recorded for Folkways Records and signed with John Henry Hammond and Columbia Records in the early 1960s. A gifted storyteller and music historian, he brought to his audiences not just the songs but the stories of the people who wrote and first sang them. He wrote a number of folk standards including "If I Had a Hammer" and "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?". With the arrival of the Vietnam War protests, Seeger was rediscovered by a younger audience and in 1965, the Byrds had a #1 hit with his "Turn! Turn! Turn!". From the mid- 1970s on, he worked regularly with Guthrie's son Arlo, and crusaded for ecology with the sloop “Clearwater”, giving concerts along the Hudson River. In 1993, he was honored with the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and in 1994, he received the Presidential Medal of the Arts, as well as a Kennedy Award. In 1996, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as an early influence and later that year, he released his first new studio album in 17 years. Seeger toured and sung around the world and his music instructional books and records have inspired generations of self-taught musicians and folksingers. He died of natural causes at age 94.

Bio by: Louis du Mort

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: isabel
  • Added: 27 Jan 2014
  • Find a Grave Memorial 124254104
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Pete Seeger (3 May 1919–27 Jan 2014), Find a Grave Memorial ID 124254104, ; Maintained by Find a Grave Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.