From Paul Kaplan.
March 24, 2009
March 24, 2009
From Paul Kaplan.
November 3, 2008
Even chord patterns can be funny.
August 24, 2008
Peggy Seeger has written a song to promote the Obama campaign, She let us know about so we are going to post her e-mail and link here. Does anyone sing campaign songs anymore? Well, maybe you could post your mashed up version on youtube and send us the link. Better yet. Text me and I’ll get back to you.
HELLO ALL – this is a mass mailout, sent en masse to all of my mailing list. The attachment contains a song entitled “Obama is the One for Me”. It is intended to help Obama’s campaign for the presidency. The song is light, a bit over-idealistic and expresses my preference for the the person I feel is the best of the only two candidates that are running for the office. I don’t normally push my political preferences via e.mail – so if you are absolutely against even hearing it, just delete the whole e.mail (although you might find yourself singing along with it: it’s kind of catchy). If you do hear it and like it and feel that it could be of use to Obama’s campaign, please
1) send it anywhere, to anyone, especially the media
2) sing it yourself in any style whatsoever
If you chance to record it yourself please put the first two lines of the credits below on the recording. Also, I’d love to hear what you do with it. The credits for THIS recording are as follows, and the credits should follow the song wherever it goes in THIS form:
words, music, © Peggy Seeger
administered by Harmony Music
vocals: Peggy Seeger (lead) and Cathy Fink (harmonies)
arrangment: Cathy Fink, Marcy Marxer and Peggy Seeger
all instruments played by Marcy Marxer
further information from www.pegseeger.com
If you would like a CD of the ‘Obama is the One for Me’ which includes original artwork, a karaoke version (without lead vocals so you can sing it yourself) and a text in .pdf. Please send $5 (or a check made out to Peggy) and a good shipping address to:
91 Paul Gore #1
Jamaica Plain MA
Please allow a week or so for delivery.
You can also listen at www.pegseeger.com & www.myspace.com/peggyseeger
April 3, 2008
The George Bush Coloring Book was compiled six years ago. Now it is available to you free, online, exclusively from Broadside. While we cannot offer print copies, feel free to print out the pages yourself, color them in, or submit to us your own additions.
Download it here.
If you enjoy it, let us know with a comment. We’re happy to be able to provide the book and would love to hear from you.
As the big man says, “The true strength of America happens when a neighbor loves a neighbor just like they’d like to be loved themselves…”
February 28, 2008
by Norman Ross
Judy is an enormously talented musician, and it is a treat to watch her strumming away on her signature Martin 12-string guitar and her unsigned 88-string Steinway piano. Listening to her at the Carlyle though was a slightly different matter. Although she commented on “what a wonderful room” it is, she didn’t say exactly why, and it doesn’t appear she meant the acoustics because her voice, more than ample without any mic for a room that size, was processed with an echo-chamber effect throughout her 90-minute show. In the end, she sounded more distant than in Carnegie Hall, although we must have been sitting 20′ from her. Nevertheless, she sounded great if you didn’t mind the effects. And it is a beautiful room filled with Picassoesque murals, comfortable banquettes and friendly clients, most of whom looked like Republicans but who seemed to be old folkies and in sync with Judy’s politics. (One lady commented to her companion as we walked past at the end, “Well HE looks like a folkie!” A redeeming moment for your reporter, certainly, but perhaps the only man in the room with even a small beard.)
The least expensive room upstairs at the Carlyle is $700, while a 3-bedroom suite starts at $4,000 per night! The cover charge in the Café Carlyle is $125, a Manhattan was $18.75 (maybe I shouldn’t have specified Seagram’s). A typical entrée (dinner is required if you want to sit at a table) is $40. So the three of us could have skipped the evening and rented Carnegie Hall (or at least a rehearsal room) for the same price! But then we would have had to do the singing ourselves, something of a letdown.
On the other hand, Judy did invite us to sing with her, including some of her own songs and the Beatles as well, although she indicated she was at least a year late for “When I’m 64?” because she’s collecting Social Security (just what I was wondering about between songs; I’m starting in August myself). Ned Rorem, the songwriter/composer, whom we had met only a few days earlier at a free classical concert at a church almost directly across Central Park from the Carlyle, graced the room and we got to hear one of his lovely songs, perhaps the only song of the evening we hadn’t heard before. (One of his classical pieces had been on the program at the church.) Several other celebrities were mentioned because they had been there on other nights, including famed producer Jac Holtzman.
As she did a year earlier, Judy led us somewhat through the story of her life, which we’ve also read, so there wasn’t much new. “When I moved to New York, I started seeing a therapist, but I thought it sort of came with the apartment.” To some extent, the between-the-songs patter was a continuation of those sessions. We learned that Judy’s had many affairs and we learned the names of some of the better-known men, including Stacy Keach (they used to live together near us on the Upper West Side) and Stephen Stills (we don’t know if anything transpired with Crosby and Nash). Her current husband, of 30 years’ duration, was sitting toward the rear and was introduced. Her accompanist on the piano sang along on some of the songs and generally added to the evening.
We went to the movies with Judy not too long ago. Well, we went to the movies and saw her there, intense, pacing up and down in the aisle with her cellphone, waiting for the previews to begin–a New York moment. Her face is always a little taut, but at least she now talks to the audience. We seem to recall Carnegie Hall decades ago with the same tautness, pretty much the same extraordinary voice and musicianship, but very little connecting to the audience. She has gradually learned to be at least a little relaxed. But she talked about the wonderful music of Rogers and Hart and then sang “Barbara Allen,” a strange segue. Struggling with tuning her 12-stringer she should have used Theo Bikel’s line in a similar situation, “Well, it’s close enough for folk music.” And folk music it mostly was, if you count her own oeuvre and “Blowin’ in the Wind” as folk. OK with me. As for Stephen Sondheim, as Lee Hays once said, he’s OK if you don’t ‘folk him up’ too much.
Pete Seeger sang at the Village Gate many decades ago (three fabulous discs came out of his stint there with Willie Dixon and Memphis Slim), and of course the Weavers got their big start when Gordon Jenkins heard them at the Village Vanguard around 1950 (can you believe that “Tzena Tzena Tzena” and “On Top of Old Smoky” were the most popular songs in the United States!), so folk music in night clubs is, I suppose, nothing new. And since she did get us singing along, it clearly was folk because when did Rogers and Hart ever lead a singalong? Judy has had a hard life, and we didn’t forget that last night. She’s also brilliant, despite my criticisms.
Harry Shearer’s is the voice you hear regularly on the Simpsons but you might have also caught him in Spinal Tap or A Mighty Wind. It took a mighty fortitude to watch A Mighty Wind if you were a folky in the 60′s as he skewered some of the stereotypes so perfectly; self- satisfied, smug, politically too earnest and burnt-out types each got their swipes. But Harry is still one of the most prolific satirists today churning it out regularly through his radio program ‘Le Show’ and other outlets. This song, “935 Lies” was heard amongst the news clips and ‘syndicated features’ of Le Show on a recent Monday morning. With a beat and sound like recent Dylan recordings, Shearer finds rhymes you wouldn’t expect and puts forth his own voice in the lyrics putting the 935 documented lies of the Bush administration in perspective. Thanks to Harry for sending along the mp3. This is the radio version which he says will be re-recorded in New Orleans later this month. Looking forward to it, Harry. Thanks.
by Jeff Ritter, ed. Broadside Revived
At an informal gathering the other day the name of Phil Ochs came up and a former SDS organizer described a great story of his first encounter with both Phil Ochs and illegal drugs in the same sentence! After that we began trying to imagine who the great politically conscious songwriters are of today. I mentioned rap and hip-hop as being on the forefront of political consciousness even though I haven’t listened to it seriously since the days of Grandmaster Flash. But as I have read, hip-hop does reflect on alienation in our society as well as any music ever has. One quite musically astute observer stated that no one put beautiful melodies together with poignant and powerful lyrics as well as Phil Ochs. I kept my mouth shut about Dylan at that point not wanting to defend his voice versus Phil’s. But the conversation became diluted after that and we never got to the crux of the issue: who are the great politically active and conscious songwriters of today? Are they in hiding? On vacation? Hiatus? Or mainstream into the sagging music industry going down with the ship? Go to the Broadside Forum and nominate your favorite, yourself or the most obscure local musician who is trotted out for every rally, potluck and benefit: we don’t know about them, but we’d like to.
Check out our interview with Pete Seeger here.