Pete Seeger Singalong

2 Feb

pete seeger singalong dc
On an unusually warm (a whopping 50-degree) Saturday, over a hundred people gathered in the Columbia Heights Civic Plaza in Washington, D.C. Young and old, many banjos and guitars, and one washtub bass joined together in some of the best known songs of folk musician and activist Pete Seeger.

I hadn’t listened much to Pete’s music before coming to Folkways in the summer, when I had to research music of the Civil Rights Movement. “We Shall Overcome” was the first song of his I really loved, and yesterday the crowd added in several contemporary, District-specific verses.

(Most people misheard “remember Pete” and sang it as “we’ll remember peace.”)

Since digging further into his extensive catalog (he played on 100+ Folkways albums—the earliest in 1953, the last in 2012), I’ve realized I grew up with many songs Pete popularized, as has probably every kid in American in the past fifty years. For example: “Wimoweh” (you know, the Lion King song).

I’m glad I could be a part of this beautiful scene—very much in the spirit of Pete.

“There is something about participating. It is almost my religion. If the world is still here in 100 years, people will know the importance of participating, not just being spectators.” —Pete Seeger

pete seeger singalong dcpete seeger singalong dcpete seeger singalong dc


5 Responses to “Pete Seeger Singalong”

  1. jim bunch February 2, 2014 at 4:35 pm #

    Wonderful recordings. An audio blog is a fantastic idea.

    • Elisa Hough February 2, 2014 at 6:49 pm #

      Thanks, Jim. Hope you get a chance to look through the rest of the blog!

  2. Jim Bunch February 2, 2014 at 8:43 pm #

    I have, and love what you do. Do you help out with the Smithsonian Folk Live Festival? My wife volunteers each year and helps out Jeff Place with the audio recordings and documentation.


    Come to a show or Farmer’s Market performance sometime

    • Elisa Hough February 2, 2014 at 9:54 pm #

      Oh, you’re the bass player! I’ll keep an eye on your group, hope I can catch a show.

      Yes, I was interning at Folkways over the summer, and now I’m a staff member at the Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage as an editor/writer. And I do the social media for the Folklife Festival!


  1. A massive link pile-up 1/24/2014 – 2/7/2014 « An Easy Distance - February 7, 2014

    […] a listen and read this awesome story about the recently passed Pete Seeger from […]

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