Sunday, January 29, 2012

Remember These Guys...?

Growing up when I did, we were fortunate to have a lot of folk singers.

Besides the obvious harmony and easy beat of the music, there was often a message in the lyrics. I miss those old groups! Not many groups have their pleasing and soothing way of singing! This group was always one of my favorites!

Jan 29, 1962:
Peter, Paul and Mary sign their first recording contract

Peter, Paul and Mary didn't revolutionize folk music the way Bob Dylan did. Dylan's songwriting fundamentally altered and then ultimately transcended the folk idiom itself, while Peter, Paul and Mary didn't even write their own material. They were good-looking, crowd-pleasing performers first and foremost—hand-selected and molded for success by a Greenwich Village impresario named Albert Grossman. Yet in their good-looking, crowd-pleasing way, Peter, Paul and Mary helped make Dylan's revolution possible, both by popularizing his songs and by proving the commercial potential of "serious" folk music in doing so. They took a decisive step on their path to success on January 29, 1962, when they signed their first recording contract with Warner Bros.—the label they still call home nearly half a century later.

Peter Yarrow, Noel Paul Stookey and Mary Travers ran in the same Greenwich Village circles, but had never performed together before Albert Grossman came along. Grossman, a co-founder of the Newport Folk Festival, was a controversial figure on the New York folk scene—a man openly seeking to commercialize a movement that wore its self-serious leftist political roots on its sleeve. Grossman recognized commercial potential in the "message songs" he was hearing in famous Village venues like Gerde's Folk City, if only he could combine the music of brilliant songwriters like Pete Seeger with the non-threatening appeal of singers like the Kingston Trio.

Pete Seeger's former group, the Weavers, had enjoyed enormous success in the early-1950s with hits like "Goodnight Irene," until their leftist background derailed their career during the Red Scare. The downfall of the Weavers led to a split within the nascent folk revival—a split between political folk that had no chance for commercial success and entertaining folk that was utterly apolitical. Grossman believed that he could span that divide with a group whose youthful good looks and non-threatening demeanor would make subtly political folk music acceptable within the popular mainstream. Enter Peter, Paul and Mary and songs like "If I Had a Hammer" and "Where Have All the Flowers Gone," both from their debut album in 1962. In 1963, Peter, Paul and Mary would release their biggest hit ever: "Blowin' in the Wind," written by a new client of Grossman's named Bob Dylan. It was the first sample of Dylan's work that most of the world would ever hear.

Mary Travers passed away in 2009.



Man, now I'm really feeling my age! Let's get some fresh coffee and go sit in the kitchen. I'll put on some oldies but goodies!

16 comments:

Gorges Smythe said...

Yup, I remember them!

HermitJim said...

Hey Gorges...
Good music from back then!

Thanks for dropping by this morning!

Ben in Texas said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ben in Texas said...

Of Course I remember. How could anyone get to out age and NOT remember?
We all learned to play the simple cords our our acoustic guitars and tried to find someone we could harmonize with.

Sixbears said...

Sure do remember them, even though I was a kid at the time.

John said...

Peter, Paul and Mary; Kingston Trio; Smothers Brothers just to name a few. Beautiful music and as you stated--told a story. I still play some of PP&M music when I dust off the old guitar.

tea4too0 said...

They were and still are my most favorite group. Because of them, I am a guitar playing granny. My kids both know how to play and two of the 4 grandkids are starting to learn to play guitar.It is suc fun when we can all get together and play. Thanks for the memories.
tea4too0

linda m said...

I remember them and all the others from that time period. Still the best music out there.

HermitJim said...

Hey Ben...
I was luckier than most, as I played the harmonica. That meant I didn't have to sing!

I sure did enjoy the music from back then and some of the shows...like "Hootnanny!"

We sure did have fun back then!

Thanks for coming by this morning, buddy!


Hey Sixbears...
Some of the older songs sure were a lot easier to sing along with.

It would be nice if some of the old timey stuff would make a comeback!

Thanks for the visit, my sailing friend!


Hey John...
Guess it's the kind of music that stays with you for a long time!

Keep practicing with the guitar, brother! Might need ya one of these days!

Thanks for the visit this morning!


Hey Tea...
Now that's a fun way to enjoy some family time! Playing music together, maybe a little sing-a-long!

We need a lot more of that!

Thanks for coming by today!

HermitJim said...

Hey Linda...
Sure was easy on the ears and pleasing to the soul, that's for sure!

Thanks so much for your visit today!

TROUBLEnTX said...

Kinda turns my stomach now, after hearing what his daughter, McKinzie Phillips, said about Peter, her father.

HermitJim said...

Hey Trouble...
You need to remember that she was licked off her television show as a teen because of her drinking and drug use! Being the tramp she is, I wouldn't believe anything she said!

Her type always seem to blame someone else for their problems and usually, if the truth be known, it turns out that they were lying!

I don't like her, don't trust her, and don't have any use for her kind!

Thanks for coming by today!

JOJO said...

I remember those songs but its not my thing.
And I know people like McKinzie, unfortunetly there are 2 of them in my family. They point fingers at everyone and nothing is ever their doing.

Lets just sit and enjoy the day.

HermitJim said...

Hey Trouble...
Besides, her father was John Phillips of "the Mammas and Pappas" and had nothing to do with Peter, Paul, and Mary!


Hey JoJo...
I reckon that every family has at least one of those kinds around somewhere!

Luckily not that many!

You have a great day, sweetie...and thanks for coming by today!

Dizzy-Dick said...

You sure do bring back a lot of memories. When I was in college, the hootanany or how ever you spell it, came to our campus. Lots of fun and good music. I'll bring my guitar and you bring your harmonica and we will bring back some of that music (grin).

Anonymous said...

I still play my old records of peter paul and mary, there will never be the likes of that trio ever ever again!!!!now people sing of death, detruction, and that hip hop crap, save me from that bull you know what! Mary Travers died not too long ago, a big big loss in my opinion, but heh I was only 14 years old an eigth grader ready to graduate from elementary school..those times were totally precious too, now our world has no respect for elders, the elderly, older folks and just plain working folks, never mind most don't keep married longer than a new york minute & have no loyalty only to themselves and what they can get from another...Is it any wonder that in the greatest country in the world a lot are starving for food and they work in excess of many hours at jobs most americans born here would never consider working!!!!!!! The presidential debates to me are a farce, fat cat career politicians with lots of money, arguing amongst themselves like they really care about the working man and or woman? I think not, at least Obama did not grow up priveleged and learned education would be the gateway to a good life...I don't think he has anything to worry about in this election year and your blog reminds me of my childhood when to me life was most precious not like today when to me my own opinion citizens are just out to get what they want, when they want with no consideration to their fellow man....I am a happy baby boomer married many years to my childhood sweetie pie, he seems to feel the same way as I do too!!!!!!!!!!!!!