Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Seeger at the inauguration

It's a beautiful thing that Pete Seeger has lived long enough to perform at the Obama inauguration. The man is 89 years old and has been singing folk songs for more years than many people will live. He's old enough that he influenced Bob Dylan when Dylan was still unknown. He was sentient during the depression, was a victim of McCarthyism and was likely chopping firewood in upstate New York on 9/11. In a lot of ways Seeger's activism seems naive (he was a card-carrying member of the communist party at one point), but this clip of an 89 year old man who spent his entire life caring deeply about his country, performing for a sea of people to celebrate the culmination of a movement he was a part of, is moving.

An aside: Bruce Springsteen made a great cover album of Seeger's songs called We Shall Overcome. Highly recommended.

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