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The Protest Singer

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A spirited and intimate look at American icon and activist Pete Seeger.
Throughout his life, Pete Seeger transformed a classic American musical style into a form of peaceful protest against war, segregation, and nuclear weapons. Drawing on his extensive talks with Seeger, Alec Wilkinson delivers a first hand look at Seeger's unique blend of independence and commitment, charm, courage, energy, and belief in human equality and American democracy. We see Seeger as a  child, instilled with a love of music by his parents; as a teenager, hearing real folk music for the first time; as a young adult, singing with Woody Guthrie. And finally, Seeger the man marching with the Rev. Martin Luther King in Selma, standing up to McCarthyism, and fighting for his beloved Hudson River. The gigantic life captured in this slender volume is truly an American anthem.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Mar 16, 2009 – In his latest book, New Yorker writer Wilkinson (The Happiest Man in the World) gives due praise to the influential American singer Pete Seeger, who humbly told his biographer that “what's needed is a book that can be read in one sitting.” It is just such a spirit of humility that emerges from Wilkinson's lovely and, indeed, brief profile of Seeger (who turns 90 in May), at once social activist, environmentalist and, above all, courageous musician, the peoples' singer, who wholeheartedly believed in his father's dictum that “music, as any art, is not an end in itself, but is a means for achieving larger ends.” Wilkinson's thorough research is artfully couched in his extended interviews with the singer on his wooded property in upstate New York, during which Seeger elucidates his storied genealogy, recounts his times with Woody Guthrie and describes his testimony before the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1955 (the full transcript of which is reprinted as an appendix). Wilkinson's biography reads as lucidly as if we were there with him, listening to Seeger's history as he boils maple sap down to syrup and chops his daily quota of firewood. In Wilkinson's writing, one can almost hear Seeger's axe splitting the logs.
The Protest Singer
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  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Biographies & Memoirs
  • Published: Apr 21, 2009
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 174 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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