music & social change

1963 – Newport Folk Festival, Fort Adams Park, Rhode Island

Peter, Paul and Mary were an American folk-singing trio whose nearly 50-year career began with their rise to become the premier American 1960s folk music group.  They recorded their first album, Peter, Paul and Mary, the following year. It included Lemon Tree, 500 Miles, and the Pete Seeger hit tunes If I Had a Hammer (subtitled: The Hammer Song) and Where Have All the Flowers Gone?. The album was listed in the Billboard Magazine Top Ten for 10 months, including seven weeks in the #1 position. It remained a main catalog-seller for decades to come, eventually selling over two million copies, earning Double Platinum certification from the RIAA in the United States alone. If I Had a Hammer (The Hammer Song) was written by Pete Seeger and Lee Hays in 1949 in support of the progressive movement, and was first recorded by The Weavers, a folk music quartet composed of Seeger, Hays, Ronnie Gilbert and Fred Hellerman, and then by Peter, Paul and Mary.



A Change Is Gonna Come” is a song by American singer-songwriter Sam Cooke, released on December 22, 1964.  The song was inspired by various personal events in Cooke’s life, most prominently an event in which he and his entourage were turned away from a whites onlymotel in Louisiana. With the refrain, “It’s been a long time coming, but I know a change is gonna come,”  “A Change Is Gonna Come” became an anthem for the American Civil Rights Movement.  From Wikipedia

[youtube][/youtube] Curtis Mayfield – People Get Ready  (1965) single by The Impressions, and the title track from the album of the same name. The single is the group’s best-known hit, reaching number-three on the Billboard R&B Chart and number 14 on the Billboard Pop Chart. The gospel-influenced track was a Curtis Mayfield composition, and displayed the growing sense of social and political awareness in his writing.  Wikipedia [youtube][/youtube] Joni Mitchell Big Yellow Taxi 1970.mp4 Big Yellow Taxi” (1970) is know for its environmental concern — “They paved paradise to put up a parking lot” and “Hey farmer, farmer, put away that DDT now” – and sentimental sound. [youtube][/youtube] Marvin Gaye “What’s Going On – What’s Happening Brother” (1971) The album is told from the point of view of a Vietnam War veteran returning to the country he had been fighting for, and seeing nothing but injustice, suffering and hatred.  Wikipedia [youtube][/youtube] Music video by Black Eyed Peas performing Where Is The Love?. (C) 2003 Interscope Geffen (A&M) Records A Division of UMG Recordings Inc.


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