“What would Pete do?” I find myself asking this question with increasing frequency as I read the front page news. Of course, I am referring to Pete Seeger. He was a great inspiration for me. I miss him. This month, I share a song that he taught us and boldly add two verses of my own. I also announce a new forthcoming studio album. I’ll meet you in the kitchen and share the details with you!
Photo © 2019 Dan Tappan
NEWS: Announcing a new album in the works!
Although I released two singles last year plus informal recordings of a new song nearly every month for the past twelve years, I haven’t recorded a full studio album of my original music since Journey Home in 2011. With a huge backlog of original songs demanding to be recorded, I have started the process. This project is an album of topical songs, which I hope to release very early in 2020. I am considering how I can use this new album to raise awareness of important issues, and as a focus for a “get out the vote” campaign or perhaps to support progressive candidates in important key races. Although I am recording these songs in my home studio, I have reached out to a few professionals for help. Stay tuned for more information soon!
I offer all of my studio recordings for free download (or pay what you want) via my online Store. And all of my informal “unofficial” recordings can be found on my Jukebox page (or in every “Kitchen Musician” blog post.)
THIS MONTH’S MUSIC
It Could be a Wonderful World
As performed by Pete Seeger
Written by Hy Zaret and Lou Singer
Additional verses by Tom Smith (ASCAP)
Because I have been working hard on recording a new album, my songwriting has taken a back seat recently. So this month I share a video that my friend King Yee took a couple weeks ago at the Roslindale Open Mike.
Astute Kitchen Musician readers may remember that I have previously shared an earlier video of this song, which I recorded shortly after Pete died in 2014. It was written by Hy Zaret and Lou Singer, but most of us associate it with Pete. I first noticed it on his 1959 album, Folk Songs for Young People. I would prefer to drop the “young” qualifier, as adults always seem to enjoy singing it with me.
Please join me in the spirit of Pete Seeger as we pass through this busy holiday season, and stoke our furnaces for important work in 2020!
(If so inclined, I invite you to leave a comment by scrolling to the end of this page.)
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Featured Non-profit: Sloop Clearwater
“For over 45 years, Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, Inc. has been at the forefront of the environmental movement as champion of the Hudson River, working to pass landmark legislation like the Clean Water Act, and providing innovative educational programs, environmental advocacy, and musical celebrations, including the renowned annual Clearwater Festival, to inspire, educate, and activate millions of people.
Today, Clearwater is carrying forward Pete Seeger’s legacy, partnering with schools and community leaders to raise the bar of environmental education, realizing that this time the health of the Hudson River must go hand in hand with creating a sustainable world of green jobs in a green economy. Clearwater’s unique approach to public outreach has made the sloop Clearwater a symbol of grassroots action through hands-on learning, music and celebration.”
Please join me in supporting the important work of Sloop Clearwater.