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Pete Seeger

Singalong: Live at Sanders Theatre, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1980

Release Date: 12/15/1991
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This is not simply a live recording. It is a carefully planned project to document a life's work. Seeger describes it in his own words: "Before my voice, memory and sense of rhythm and pitch were too far gone I decided, at age sixty, to document one of my two-hour 'concerts' such as I have given for over twenty-five years, usually at colleges....In January, my wife Toshi once again put aside her own work to help me drive to Cambridge, Massachusetts....Sanders Theatre, on the Harvard University campus, is one of our best small auditoriums. Built a century ago, it holds 800 seats in semicircular rows. Lots of wood panelling, with wonderful 'live' acoustics for singing....The audience, mostly youthful, included parents, grandparents, and pre-schoolers. They all sang like angels." (from Seeger's extensive liner notes). This sixtieth-birthday singalong combines old Pete Seeger favorites ("If I Had a Hammer," "The Water Is Wide," "Twelve Gates to the City," and "Abiyoyo") with more recent topical songs ("Young Lady Who Swallowed a Lie," and "Christo ja Nacio"), and moving renditions of "Amazing Grace" and "Jacob's Ladder." Throughout it all, Pete weaves a magical thread of narrative -- introducing the songs, talking about the history, about the present, and about human aspirations around the world on a recording 117 minutes long. His extensive liner notes, written shortly after the concert, provide yet another perspective on what he was trying to do, and are filled with suggestions for how future performers might do the same. For over fifty years, Pete Seeger has addressed contemporary social issues in an exciting combination of political, historical and topical songs. No other recording so brilliantly captures the communal experience of a Pete Seeger concert. This concert is brought to you just as it was originally performed, as a testimony to the skill and dedication of a master performer at the height of his powers. ~ Roundup Newsletter, Rovi

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