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Pete Seeger

Peter Seeger (May 3, 1919 – January 27, 2014) was an American folk singer and social activist. He was the nephew of American war poet Alan Seeger, who died fighting with the French Foreign Legion during the Battle of the Somme in 1916.

A fixture on nationwide radio in the 1940s, Seeger also had a string of hit records during the early 1950s as a member of the Weavers, most notably their recording of Lead Belly's "Goodnight, Irene", which topped the charts for 13 weeks in 1950. Members of the Weavers were blacklisted during the McCarthy Era. In the 1960s, Seeger re-emerged on the public scene as a prominent singer of protest music in support of international disarmament, civil rights, counterculture, and environmental causes.

A prolific songwriter, his best-known songs include "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?" (with Joe Hickerson), "If I Had a Hammer (The Hammer Song)" (with Lee Hays of the Weavers), and "Turn! Turn! Turn!", which have been recorded by many artists both in and outside the folk revival movement. "Flowers" was a hit recording for the Kingston Trio (1962); Marlene Dietrich, who recorded it in English, German and French (1962); and Johnny Rivers (1965). "If I Had a Hammer" was a hit for Peter, Paul and Mary (1962) and Trini Lopez (1963) while the Byrds had a number one hit with "Turn! Turn! Turn!" in 1965.

Seeger was one of the folk singers responsible for popularizing the spiritual "We Shall Overcome" (also recorded by Joan Baez and many other singer-activists) that became the acknowledged anthem of the Civil Rights Movement, soon after folk singer and activist Guy Carawan introduced it at the founding meeting of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in 1960. In the PBS American Masters episode "Pete Seeger: The Power of Song", Seeger said it was he who changed the lyric from the traditional "We will overcome" to the more singable "We shall overcome".

Birth and Death Data: Born May 3rd, 1919 (New York City), Died January 27th, 2014 (Manhattan)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1950 - 1961

Roles Represented in DAHR: vocalist, guitar, banjo

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 51 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Decca 76280 5/4/1950 Around the world The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 76281 5/4/1950 Tzena, tzena, tzena The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 76420 5/26/1950 Whispering Gordon Jenkins Orchestra vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 76421 5/26/1950 Tzena, tzena, tzena Gordon Jenkins Orchestra vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 76422 5/26/1950 Goodnight Irene Gordon Jenkins Orchestra vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 76423 5/26/1950 When I grow too old to dream Gordon Jenkins Orchestra vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80077 10/24/1950 Lonesome traveler The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80078 10/24/1950 So long The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80127 11/3/1950 (The wreck of the) John B The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80128 11/3/1950 Midnight special The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80129 11/3/1950 The roving kind The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80130 11/3/1950 The drinking gourd The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80139 11/6/1950 Trouble in mind The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80140 11/6/1950 Along the Colorado trail The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80141 11/6/1950 Suliram The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80142 11/6/1950 I know where I'm going ; Hush little baby The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80845 4/9/1951 Along the Colorado trail The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80974 5/4/1951 The frozen logger The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80975 5/4/1951 Follow the drinking gourd The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80976 5/4/1951 Wake up, darling Cory (Darling Corey) The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80977 5/4/1951 Greensleeves The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 80978 5/4/1951 Easy rider blues The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 81070 5/9/1951 Greensleeves The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 81178 6/12/1951 When the Saints go marching in The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
Decca 81179 6/12/1951 Run home to Mama The Weavers vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar, banjo  
(Results 1-25 of 51 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Seeger, Pete," accessed January 15, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/209241.

Seeger, Pete. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved January 15, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/209241.

"Seeger, Pete." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 15 January 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/209241

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