Rae Anne Donlin has Died

Article written by on Sunday, Mar 25, 2007 in Passings

Rae Anne Donlin died March 15th of complications from Alzheimer’s disease. She and her husband Bob ran the legendary Passim coffee house in Boston for 25 years.

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Job Opening: Swallow Hill Music Association Executive Director

Article written by on Sunday, Mar 25, 2007 in Organizations

The Swallow Hill Music Association seeks a dynamic, experienced and creative Executive Director to lead, develop and operate the organization.

Located in Denver, Colorado, The Swallow Hill Music Association is the largest folk, roots and acoustic music organization west of the Mississippi. Swallow Hill is an award winning 30-year-old non-profit corporation dedicated to the preservation and presentation of folk and roots music. It currently presents more than 250 concerts a year in a 22,000 square foot facility with two concert halls and a coffee house. Through its on-site music school, Swallow Hill provides instruction to more than 3000 students enrolled in 300+ classes.


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Petition to Nominate Pete Seeger for Nobel Peace Prize

Article written by on Friday, Mar 23, 2007 in Opinion

Long-time civil rights activist and co-founder of the Freedom Song Network, Eleanor Walden has organized a petition to urge the American Friends Service Committee to nominate Pete Seeger for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Pete Seeger has been a crusader for Peace and Social Justice over the course of his 87 year lifetime. As a prominent musician his songs, messages and performance style have worked to engage other people, particularly the youth, in causes to end the Vietnam war, ban nuclear weapons, work for international solidarity, and ecological responsibility. It is time that a cultural worker receives the recognition that this work has great influence and global reach, that it is not only a medium of entertainment but of education, compassion and fraternity.

Of course Pete has never been alone in this work. He is the first to affirm that. But his unique sense of purpose, decency, and ability, and the support of Toshi and his family gave him the opportunity to be all that he could be. He is a role model and a guiding spirit, we are fortunate to have had him in our world. We can be influential in getting him nominated for the honor he deserves.

As cultural workers we know the power of the arts, we also know how difficult it is to gain recognition for cultural creation. Pete Seeger has gained recognition without compromise! Carl Sandburg called Seeger “the living embodiment of America’s traditions….” When Pete was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996 they said, “Pete Seeger’s contribution to folk music, both in terms of its revival and survival, cannot be overstated.” Pete was also honored by the Kennedy Center with its Lifetime Achievement Award in 1994. In 2001 they again paid tribute to Pete Seeger with a cross generational presentation. The program featured friends and family including Tao Rodriguez-Seeger, grandson of Pete Seeger, and Sarah Lee Guthrie, granddaughter of Woody Guthrie.” They described Pete as being, “Instrumental in popularizing the indigenous American song, his own compositions – among them ‘If I Had a Hammer,’ ‘We Shall Overcome,’ and ‘Where Have All the Flowers Gone’ (and ‘The Big Muddy’ ) have served as anthems for an entire generation.

It is important to honor our forbears, we all stand on Pete Seeger’s shoulders in a manner of speaking. We have an opportunity to acknowledge him a “father” of a cultural, social, and political movement, which enriched us all and in which we all share, as much as we share our paternal DNA.

I posted a petition on a site named The aim is grassroots influence to the American Friends Service Committee to nominate Pete Seeger for the Nobel Peace Prize. I know there are many people interested in adding support. I’m asking everyone to circulate the petition information to at least 5 other people asking them to notify 5-10 other people.

Eleanor Walden

The petition can be found at

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New Videos From Patrick Costello

Article written by on Sunday, Mar 18, 2007 in On The Web,Publications


A while back, actually quite a while back. I posted about Patrick Costello’s Creative Commons licensed [banjo and guitar instruction books…Patrick wrote recently to let me know that he’s still at it. He’s added two instruction videos, one for Banjo and one for guitar. Like his books they’re licensed under creative commons and can be downloaded for free…

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Dylan Hears A Who

Article written by on Sunday, Mar 18, 2007 in On The Web


dylanhearsawhotracycard.jpg This Dylan spoof features Dr Seuss performed by a pretty good Dylan impersonator along with artwork for the “album”. Some of tracks work better than others but all in all it’s quite funny and weird. I particularly like “Green Eggs and Ham”. What’s your favorite?

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George W. Told The Nation

Article written by on Thursday, Mar 15, 2007 in On The Web

Tom Paxton has updated his Vietnam era ‘Lyndon Johnson Told The Nation’ and posted it on his web site as one of his ’short shelf life’ songs.

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Connie Kaldor Honored

Article written by on Sunday, Mar 04, 2007 in Awards


conniekaldor_3.jpg Connie Kaldor nas been named a member of Order of Canada. Canada’s highest civilian honour, ‘The Order of Canada’ recognizes “a lifetime of outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation”.

Susan Forbes Hanson points us to a delightful profile of Kaldor and her reaction to the award.

“On Wednesday morning, two things happened to Connie Kaldor — one resounding, the other quiet. First, the former Regina resident was officially named a member of the Order of Canada for her achievements in folk singing and writing. Second, on the way to dropping her sons off at school, the third line of the song she’s been writing came to her.”

Regina Leader-post: Kaldor ‘thrilled’ with honour

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Mark Spolestra Passes

Article written by on Sunday, Mar 04, 2007 in Passings

Sadly Mark Spolestra passed away this week at 66. Active in the 6o’s folk scene and an early friend of Bob Dylan’s he sought more steady work while his children were growing up but had returned to songwriting since retirement. Ron Olesko posted this obituary.

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