Sunday, May 3, 2009

Petefest at Madison Square Garden- Happy 90th Birthday

Pete Seeger, who recently performed at the inauguration with his grandson and Bruce Springsteen, will get the chance see both of them again at his ninetieth birthday party, which will be taking place today at Madison Square Garden. Springsteen's attendance is evidence of the esteem with which generations of musicians regard the folk legend.

Folk Music such as that popularized by Pete Seeger and acknowledged by historians, sociologists, and educators indicates the important role that music plays in the education of our children (see video). It is difficult to imagine discussions about the Great Depression or the Civil Rights movement without the music of the times providing a context for the mood of the country at the time. No doubt this historic economic downturn we are currently engaged in will generate it's own music and artistic inspiration for future generations to understand and to place within it's own historic and sociological context.

Joining Springsteen will be luminaries such as Kris Kristofferson, Eddie Vedder, Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle, and John Mellencamp. A full list of those appearing follows:


Abigail Washburn and the Sparrow Quartet
Ani DiFranco
Arlo Guthrie
Michael Franti
Bela Fleck
Ben Bridwell (Band of Horses)
Ben Harper
Bernice Johnson Reagon
Billy Bragg
Billy Nershi (String Cheese Incident)
Bruce Cockburn
Bruce Springsteen
Dar Williams
Dave Matthews
Eddie Vedder
Emmylou Harris
Guy Davis
Jay Ungar & Molly Mason
Joan Baez
John Mellencamp
Kate & Anna McGarrigle
Keller Williams
Kris Kristofferson
Ladysmith Black Mambazo
Larry Long
Mike & Ruthy Merenda
Native American Indian Cultural Alliance
NYC Labor Chorus
Patterson Hood (Drive-By Truckers)
Preservation Hall Jazz Band with Del McCoury
Ramblin' Jack Elliott
Richie Havens
Scarlet Moore
Silvio Rodriguez
Steve Earle
Taj Mahal
Tao Rodriguez-Seeger
Tom Chapin
Tom Morello (Rage Against the Machine)
Tom Paxton
Tommy Sands
Tony Trischka
Toshi Reagon
Warren Haynes 


Proceeds from the concert will benefit  Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, an environmental organization founded by Seeger to preserve and protect the Hudson River. 

See Seeger perform "What Did You Learn in School Today" from a BBC broadcast recorded in 1964.

For a review of the concert click HERE.

For a review of the concert by the NY TIMES, click HERE.