April 28, 2010

Peter, Paul and Mary's Last Soaring Song

Posted: 02:58 PM ET


By Quinn Brown
LKL Producer

It's hard to understate the importance and impact of folk music.  What started with Woody Guthrie and then was popularized by New York's Greenwich Village scene in the ‘60’s (and its luminaries including Pete Seeger, Karen Dalton, and Bob Dylan), echoes to this day with any artist that picks up an instrument and sings something besides "baby, please don't go."

Folk music is defiant, topical, rousing, poetic.  Its influence reached the likes of Johnny Cash, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Marley, The Beatles, Public Enemy, Iggy Pop, Joni Mitchell, Bono, and countless others.

As pervasive as the music is, it may never have reached the masses if not for Peter Yarrow, Noel "Paul" Stookey and Mary Travers - Peter, Paul and Mary.  For those who could not handle the lo-fi recordings of Guthrie or the aural snarl of Dylan, the folk trio was more than just palatable.  Their three-part harmony was a symphony of voice (and a lone acoustic guitar).  And the masses took notice.

So it is fitting that the last testament of the folk legends ("Where Have All the Flowers Gone", "Puff the Magic Dragon", "Leaving on a Jet Plane") is Peter, Paul and Mary with Symphony Orchestra:  The Prague Sessions (Rhino Records).  Over their five-decade career, the group performed with an orchestra around 30 times and, as Yarrow says, "Those were special to Mary.  She had a strong feeling about those concerts."

Mary Travers passed away September 16, 2009 due to complications from chemotherapy for treatment of leukemia.  The trio and longtime collaborator Robert DeCormier spent the final years of Travers' life compiling 14 live stage performances and enlisting the Czech Symphony orchestra to bring her final dream to fruition.  The result is a record of soaring sounds– voices and strings that swell to the point where the songs aren't folk so much as they are hymns.  "This feels like the last page of the photo album.  It's honoring Mary and the importance of the music we shared," says Stookey.

Peter Yarrow and Paul Stookey sat down with CNN to discuss the symphony project, Mary Travers' impact on their lives and her final days, and performing as a duo.

LKL Blog: The origins of the new album went back many years?

Peter: It was a part of our history as an extension. There was a part of our history that had not been shared. It was very special to Mary and to all of us because there was a certain kind of musical exhilaration and passion in our performances when we would perform with the symphony orchestra. These arrangements, which were done by Bob DeCormier, were the closest to it–with my objective mind making the comparison–like Puccini wrote the score. It's just characterization between the orchestra and the singers. And that gives you another sense of the dimension and the passion because it’s really well written. If it's not, it's really wrong because with folk music it has to be really right for it to work in the context with being united as you sing.

Paul: Little-by-little, we had 5 or 6 songs that we did with the symphonies. We would add new ones each year. So about 5 years ago, just before Mary was diagnosed with leukemia, we all said, “You know we should really take these songs out and, surrounded by these beautiful orchestrations, record them.” And everyone was up for that idea.  We had performed 25 to 30 times with symphony orchestras over the past 25 years. We had never recorded these tunes. And now they have all come together, albeit a bit unofficially, but with the excitement of live performance of the trio and with the beautiful orchestrations.

Unfortunately, Mary’s circumstance became more and more severe. So in the later days of Mary’s life we talked about sending our tracks that we had performed. We sent tracks to Czechoslovakia with our musical director. So he went over with tracks that we recorded from live concerts and the late 90s and early sets. And the interesting thing about those tracks that over the period of 40 years the arrangements for even the classic tunes like "Puff the Magic Dragon" or "Where have all the flowers gone" or "This Land", had changed considerably.

Peter:  [The album is] one of the things that we just never attended to but something that was very precious to us, and particularly to Mary. She just had a very strong feeling about those concerts. They would always really inspire her.

LKL Blog: Did you find that to be a pretty easy marriage? The folk based music and the orchestra?

Paul: Ordinarily I would not. I would be very critical of anyone attempting to do this, but Bob DeCormier's background is folk music. And he has just been involved in folk music from the ground level up. So his trick for the folk music is not to over-power it but to stand behind it and make it more visible.   A large wave and sail all in one.

Peter: There’s only a few people who can do it. He was a musical director and he did it with a very in-depth understanding of the music. Most orchestrations done for folk are really wrong.  They are distracting and kill the intimacy of it. And this album has none of that. Many people feel it’s musically the richest album we’ve ever done.

LKL Blog: Regarding mary, were you able to be with her before she passed?

Paul:  Oh yes. In the later days I would say every two weeks you would find Peter and I at Mary's house and, in all honesty, as she was dealing with her circumstance there was a gentleness that just infused from her and an awareness that life was very precious and that spread to her friends. She had many of them around her.

Peter: Paul and I were there for most of the day her last day. And I spent time with her and everybody else. It was a small group. Very shortly thereafter we had the memorial service and the burial. We had a celebration of her life, with over 30 people that remembered her and paid tribute to her. It was a most amazing gathering.

LKL Blog: What did she mean to Peter, Paul and Mary musically, personally and otherwise?

Paul:  Wow. That’s a major question because frankly you’re asking a tree to come out of the forest.  The overall impact of Peter, Paul and Mary was greater than the sum of its parts. There was synergy that she drew from Peter and I.

There was the entire issue of feminism, and she was one of the leading images.  By declaring her intelligence and sensitivity she, I think, elevated the awareness of the power of perception of women.  She was the stronger voice of all three of us. It was amazing that to us we became such a family of vocalists, which is the only way to describe it.  Mary contributed an edginess and strong voice, but also the immediacy of our passion by being very flexible with her voice. She had an amazing range.

Peter: When we were on stage we called upon the best of ourselves, and each other, to share the best that we could be. Not just musically but in human terms. And that was the details of the group. That’s what we did. And that’s the way we embraced each other.

LKL Blog: Has it been difficult to perform as a duo?

Peter:  We continue. It’s different but it must be done. It’s not a matter of having a life and then that life being over, it’s a matter of the resonance of the value of what’s been said. It continues.

Paul: Recently, I said [to Peter] "I really enjoy talking to you." He said, "Don’t you know this is the way we’re breathing." I thought wow that’s true. I just teared up. I realized the truth of it.

LKL Blog: Your group played at the historic March on Washington in 1963 that featured Martin Luther King Jr.  What did you make of the scene at the inauguration last year?

Paul: The victory of Obama psychologically and metaphorically liberated, celebrated all people, and not just the black. And so in Washington, everyone was forthcoming, genuinely happy in sharing their life and their life with other people. It was the closest thing I’ve seen to the kind of affection people had in the ‘60’s.

Peter: We have been doing what we’ve been doing for a long time. We see the actual inauguration on television. We can say we’ve participated in some way. To bring testimony to our presence on the most private of levels, and the most public of levels. That is the legacy carried on. We carry the legacy of what we’ve experienced as Peter Paul and Mary. Not to reminisce, but to recreate. And that’s what the future holds for me and Paul and everyone who is touched by that era, by that music that idealism, and by extraordinary times of great opportunity.

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Filed under: Entertainment • LKL Web Exclusive • Music • Paul and Mary

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Donald L Allen   April 28th, 2010 3:24 pm ET

Donald L Allen if there is summation you want to make against the low it need to be the rip police it about the right of all people it not just about you and it all or money not just your,s if you understand it way don't you do it right see you you might not like it but it true I no you of all people no what I,M saying and the thing is what or you gonna do on the mater see you Larry and this is only the sicken timE been on see you I did not send no other Email this is the only other one

Donald L Allen   April 28th, 2010 3:32 pm ET

Donald L Allen I think the grope have nutting to do with what I,M doing since you well not recognise me as a sucker you or not one near you don't do nutting that I have not dun already the thing wen or you going relics it to your feed pick all I do and than you put your clam on it not like you rely do anything right see what I mean and no what it mean to you or what it don,t meant to you the hole thing is not like it post to work like that you no it true you can crash my computer any time you please but it not like you or UP right in what you or doing see what it meant to you and then we can get sum were see you Donald L Allen PS hop you can read see you Larry King

Faith   April 28th, 2010 4:24 pm ET

Any way to get rid of the gibberish that is Donald L Allen's comments?

socalgal   April 28th, 2010 4:28 pm ET

Stop smearing Mary's name with the sickening thought of our nation's current and worst president ever.

Valerie   April 28th, 2010 4:38 pm ET

I think someone needs to tell "Donald L Allen" to "put the pipe down, puff, the magic dragon"!

Jim   April 28th, 2010 4:42 pm ET

To Donald L Allen---Said What???

c.j.   April 28th, 2010 4:42 pm ET

Having been lucky enough to have seen Peter Paul and Mary live several times over the years it certainly is touching the way they feel after Mary's passing. She had a terrific presents on stage, and the whole group is really a page unto itself on the history of the sixties for sure. Meaningful clear and clean lyrics and wonderful presentation are something they had throughout that today's generation knows nothing about with the noisy foul ( I guess ) music they listen to.

Bubba   April 28th, 2010 5:05 pm ET

They were a great group and made great music; they are part of our culture and history as well as being good people. Their songs will be played and discussed a hundred years from now, and you can't do better than that.

lammd   April 28th, 2010 5:36 pm ET

Why do all the folk music articles forget the real populizers of commercial folk music? Were it not for the Kingston Trio there would have been no PP&M., Bob Dylan, the Eagles, etc. Of course if not for the Weavers, no Kingston Trio. Please give these guys, who had 4 albums in the top 10 at the same time, their long overdue credit.

lammd   April 28th, 2010 5:36 pm ET

Why do all the folk music articles forget the real populizers of commercial folk music? Were it not for the Kingston Trio there would have been no PP&M., Bob Dylan, the Eagles, etc. Of course if not for the Weavers, no Kingston Trio. Please give these guys, who had 4 albums in the top 10 at the same time, their long overdue credit.

PS: love PP&M, just want to set the record straight.

Horsehooves   April 28th, 2010 6:23 pm ET

Easy folks on Donald Allen...he reads that something is going on.
To you Donald Allen...have someone proof read what you are writing. You don't make any sense. Sorry guy, but you just don't make any sense.

CK   April 28th, 2010 6:58 pm ET

Unlike most pop music, PP&M's music often inspired and provoked, with some lyrics worth savoring. And of course, the vocal arrangements were just so tight and melodic. It's good to see that P&P are still out there, making music, keeping those voices in the wind for many to hear. The Kingston Trio, PP &M, and the Weavers made "folk music" palletable to a mass audience, and that's a good thing. I'd also add Bob Gibson, Odetta, and Josh White to the list, although they never made it to the pop charts. All of these artists showed us that folk music simply didn't belong to farmers, miners, hobos, sailors, and slaves, but to everyone–that while romantic love is a nice topic, there are other topics to sing about...other topics that you almost never hear in country or pop or rap...topics about our history, challenges, social woes, travels, and work. THANKS PP&M for the new recording, and for the past half century of song.

Chuck in Jasper Georgia   April 28th, 2010 7:53 pm ET

SOCALGAL.. apparently you have not noticed.. Bush is no longer the president.

Dan Morgan   April 28th, 2010 7:53 pm ET

I'm pretty sure folk music started long before Woody Guthrie.

maggie   April 28th, 2010 8:59 pm ET

Peter Paul and Mary were great..with beauiful harmony and thought provoking songs they were icons of the peace movement in the `60 s....RIP Mary.

Three Dog Mama   April 28th, 2010 9:17 pm ET

Stop blaming Obama for the ills that Bush caused for this country. Bush invaded Iraq, Obama didn't. Bush GAVE the banks money with no way to track how that money was spent. The article was more on their music together and their performances worldwide – NOT Bush or Obama. And Donald L – get a life.

Sammy   April 28th, 2010 9:34 pm ET

I grew up with Peter paul and Mary, as well other groups that sang folk music. I still listen to them today. (People think I'm crazy but they don't know the peace beauty and serenity in all folk music) I konw Mary's death was a severe blow to Peter and Paul and when I heard about her death it saddened me too-VERY MUCH

Jeanne   April 28th, 2010 10:24 pm ET

Looking forward to the recording discussed. What a beautiful tribute to Mary. I was fortunate to see them perform at the Red Rocks Amphitheater in Colorado years ago-a most memorable evening. I also loved the folk music of the 60's, including Bob Gibson whom I saw perform at the Gate of Horn in Chicago and was privileged more recently to see Odetta perform in Eugene, OR not too long before her death.

Samatha Abbott   April 28th, 2010 10:31 pm ET

Peter,Paul&Mary was the very first album I bought with my 2 sisters as a present for our father. That album was played on his Hi-Fi stereo over and over and over, and I can still remember every word to every song. With my child's voice, I could harmonize with Mary's voice, "Where did all the flowers go-Long time passing ...", as she sang a sweet lullaby directly to me through that record player. She was my friend and a voice I loved

When my father died 20 years later, i played that LP one last time before it was packed up into storage–
"Where have all the flowers gone?
Girls have picked them every one
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?"

Farewell, Mary Traverse–thanks for bringing music into a child's life. See you on the other side!

Annie   April 28th, 2010 10:50 pm ET

As long as we're evoking memories, let's toss in The Chad Mitchell Trio, The Highwaymen, The Brothers Four, The New Christy Minstrels, etc. What a legacy to revel in! The Kingston Trio came to our town for a fundraiser a couple of years ago-absolutely WONDERFUL evening!!

tim   April 28th, 2010 11:24 pm ET

I have heard cuts from this album and I completely disagree with Peter about the arrangements. They ARE intrusive and they DO overpower the folk asthetic of this legendary group of singers.

dorothy   April 28th, 2010 11:35 pm ET

I am 63 years old and grew up in the rip roaring 60's. I loved PPandM. Saw them in concert in California and Texas. I was so sad about Marys death but her music like Elvis will live on.

lynne glasman   April 29th, 2010 12:09 am ET

I had the honor of living in Berkeley during the '60's. I heard & saw the Kingston Trio at the Hungry I. I enjoyed the Lamplighters. And Joan Baez. But most of all, I loved PP&M. I still get a thrill when I hear their recordings. When Mary's death was announced, I cried like a baby. Part of my idealistic youth had died, as well as an incredibly talented human being. May her memory be for a blessing.

Cajazz76:24:8   April 29th, 2010 12:10 am ET

I remember vividly sitting in the MAC terminal at Norton AFB, not far from Los Angeles, waiting to board a flight to participate in the "Southeast Asian War Games". The song '"Leaving on a Jet Plane" was piped over loud speakers and hit very deep in the pysche of this, then GI, for reasons much more ingrained in my head than one can imagine. I was travelling in the footsteps of an older brother who had taken the trip before me. For him the consequences were far worse, than for me.

It wasn't very long before "Puff the Magic Dragon" resonated in the daily lives of many sent there as the unwilling, doing the unnecessary, for the ungrateful, learned of new meanings for that song.

It was a nickname for the DC-3, with the military designation AC-47 'Spooky', nicknamed "Puff" and, of course, the three fingered unfiltered bible verse bound, in lieu of Jackie Papers, smoldering sticks that were "Magic" for many of us to allay our consternations with.

I know the song was written about the course of life as we grow older, and that the writers detested any other meaning, but they should take comfort that is was never meant, in that arena, as derogatory.

maggie   April 29th, 2010 12:25 am ET

Peter Paul and Mary came to Sydney in the `60s I would have loved to have seen them but was too young.They seemed so close to each other like a sister and 2 brothers and like Dylan their music went far beyond what perhaps they had intended.

Dodie   April 29th, 2010 12:27 am ET

What a wonderful group, PP&M. So much talent and their music was wonderful.
Here are some of their more famous songs. My favorite being Blowin in the wind.

How many roads must a man walk down
Before they call him a man?
How many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand?
How many times must the cannon balls fly
Before they're forever banned?

(Very beautiful lyrics and with deep meaning)

For The Love of It All
Early Mornin' Rain
Forever Young
Early In the Morning
500 Miles
El Salvador (written for El Salvador during their Civil War)

For Lovin' Me

Their concerts were wonderful!

Gary Horn - Michigan   April 29th, 2010 3:27 am ET

Peter, Paul & Mary helped define us as a nation ... their songs got our toes tapping, our hearts racing and our minds thinking. Mary's voice stirred us in a way that today's youth can't comprehend. I'm happy that Peter & Paul are still performing and I look forward to seeing them perform again ... and they will always be Peter, Paul & Mary ...

Dan   April 29th, 2010 7:33 am ET

Amazing that the Republicans attack Obama because he tried to pass healthcare, while the rest of America hates Bush because he illegally attacked a country that didn't attack us, lied about going to war, violated the Geneva convention, encouraged torture, illegally spied on U.S. citizens, refused to recognize prisoners of war, kept POWs in dentention indefinately without trial and without access to legal records and legal counsel, killed close to a hundred thousand Iraqis civilians in the invasion part of his war just to start. Quite a contrast between the two presidents.

Roland   April 29th, 2010 8:10 am ET

One of my favorite recordings PP&M made was a single (I believe) of "Cruel War" that had an orchestral background. I liked it as much or better than the acoustic versions that have appeared on their albums. Like others who have posted here, I grew up with their music (had their first album when that was the only album they had out), they were the first group I saw perform live. Amazing people, amazing group.

Pearl   April 29th, 2010 9:08 am ET

PPM: It's all about the harmony.

j   April 29th, 2010 9:49 am ET

What this country needs now is dispassionate discussion of serious issues by informed people. Our president's unfortunate trend toward personmally attacking people who disagree with him isn't helpful. Let's stick to the facts. As to President Bush, he did take us to war. While the CIA and most of the world's inteligence gathering services provided bad information for decision makers, there is no substance to the oft repeated comment that Bush lied. There is no evidence that Bush knew about or condoned torture. Terrorists legally are not POWs and the Geneva convention has not been violated. The contrast in administrations you refer to becomes less of a contrast over time as the current administration continues to quietly adopt the prior administrations policies regarding terrorists. Is Guantanimo still open? The issues are difficult and nuanced and you careless sloganeering is unhelpful.

David Kaye   April 29th, 2010 9:53 am ET

Fortunately for all of us, Mary Travers will live forever on the wonderful recordings of PP&M. What made PP&M great was the mixture of intelligent lyrics with wonderful musicality. I was lucky to have seen them live, as well as The Weavers, The Kingston Trio, The Limelighters and so many others. Although The Kingston Trio did not do much protest music, one of their songs expressed the antiwar philosophy so well put forth by PP&M. It was called The Merry Minuet. The final lines are as current today as they were when they were written in the 60's:
They are rioting in Africa,
There's strife in Iran,
What nature doesn't do to us,
Will be done by our fellow man.

Larry Liddell   April 29th, 2010 9:57 am ET

I had the honor and privilege of interviewing PP&M once and found them to be an open, honest, forward, thinking group and yet individualistic in their responses. And I found their music to be the same. Their songs had meaning and were sung in a way that expressed that meaning. I will miss Mary Travers but the music of PP&M will forever be with me.

Greg   April 29th, 2010 10:00 am ET

to Socalgal - could you be any more clueless? I doubt it. If you know anything about PPM, you would know that they find your politics abhorrent. It's right there in their music. We know that you wouldn't be caught anywhere near the March on Washington in 1963 (you're lovely that way, I can tell), but PPM believed in the cause and were there.

So, honestly, quick smearing your sickening opinion in the comments section of a piece which celebrates some of the last original work we will get out of this amazing trio.

I think you've confused Obama with the eight years of George W. Bush as far as the worst president ever. And the fact that you're in Southern California is offensive to all of us that live here. Please move to a red state where you can meet up with your toothless first cousins and marry one.

Ingrid   April 29th, 2010 10:27 am ET

The article and the nostalgic comments about PP&M give me chills. Their music was a profound part of my childhood – my parents had a number of their records that we listened to time and time again. Wonderful memories!

Michael   April 29th, 2010 10:37 am ET

I don't think that I will ever reach a point where I get past the crying everytime someone says "Mary Travers." PP&M was the very first live concert I ever went to, and it changed my life forever. I've had the incredible opportunity to hear them perform as a group many times since, and also to run into them each separately while walking around Manhattan, and they were always so kind and willing to talk and laugh with me. They are the nicest people I have ever met. And I am so glad I bought all of Mary's solo albums when they first came out and still have them. Thank you Peter, Paul and Mary for changing my life, and helping me become a better person.

American_Guy   April 29th, 2010 10:42 am ET

Folk music fans: I recently converted some vinyl to MP3s for a friend, and one of the albums was from the We Five, from the early sixties. I was surprised. They only had one hit: You Were On My Mind, but the rest of the album was really folk music. They were PP&M wanna-be's, and the female vocalist had an absolutely amazing voice and range. If you get the opportunity, listen to it. The album name is: We Five, You Were On My Mind.

Billcy   April 29th, 2010 11:13 am ET

Give Obama a chance, he has had only the last 18 months to screw up...inaction on a list of issues, healthcare "Reform" that no one wanted, bank bail outs etc. He's just getting started. Anyway...
Peter, Paul and Mary introduced great songwriters to the general public just by recording their songs. Gordon Lightfoot, John Denver and made Bob Dylan"s music palatable to the masses (Dylan can't sing worth a da*n). Saw them in concert many times and it was a complete show, great music and comedy by Paul. Will miss Mary.

mickey   April 29th, 2010 11:16 am ET

the chad mitchell trio!

my parents had their records and i wore them out growing up.

i later on they became just the mitchell trio and chad was replaced with a guitar player that did pretty well for himself...

paul   April 29th, 2010 11:35 am ET

Peter, Paul & Mary ~ they were (& are) folk music! True, the Kingston Trio & others were the opening act but PP&M showed us the beauty, poetry & passion of folk music. I grew up with them & consider them friends even though we have never met. I was lucky to see them in concert several times during their long career. Their concerts were a celebration of life & love unified by the power of music. Mary may be gone but PP&M continues to inspire new generations of "folkies" with their music, social commitment & artistry. To each of them: Thank you!

Mark   April 29th, 2010 12:14 pm ET

Obviously you mean to say it's hard to overstate the importance of folk music, not that it's hard to understate it. And as the photo accompanying the piece shows, it wasn't a solo guitar, it was two beautifully played and arranged acoustic guitars (often with acoustic bass as well) with the symphony of three wonderful voices.

And yes, I'm looking forward to the new album!

Wizwill   April 29th, 2010 12:14 pm ET

I had the distinct privilege of hearing Peter Yarrow sing in Providence, Rhode Island at a Dump Nixon rally, about 1970 as I recall. it was a cold and raw rainy day and he sang an impassioned "Weave Me the Sunshine" including several verses I have never heard since. By the time the song was finished, the sun was out and people were dancing. Nixon got dumped at the next election, too.

I performed music professionally for 20+ years. PP &M plusMerle Haggard were the genesis of my music. RIP Mary.

David   April 29th, 2010 12:16 pm ET

Folk music probably started when this country was being settled. During the 60s, we protested everything and much of our protest got expressed in songs: Vietnam, Civil Rights, Woman's Rights, sexual revolution. All of the "protest singers", PPM included, showed up on a TV program called Hootenanny. Song was the way we express out discontent. Today we complain about Obama vs Bush. Today we fight wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – two countries that never attacked us, just as we fought Vietnam – a country that never attacked us. Our leaders told us it was necessary. What I would like to see is every ballot for every office – federal, state and local governments – to always have one manditory entry: "NEITHER". Today we are forced to chose between Democrat or Republican (yeah, there are other parties – but not really). I would like to be able to say I don't want either one of them – the both suck and I want a better choice. Can we get organized enough to force that change to out voting in the US. I think Mary Travers would want that. We haven't had a decent choice since I started voting in the 60s and I deserve better than what I have been offered. Put "NEITHER" on the ballot and voter turn-out will exceed 90% of all registered voters. Anybody want to take that bet???

Bill   April 29th, 2010 12:35 pm ET

The "other person" mentioned in the article, Karen Dalton, has had some of her music re-appear in the last few years. She apparently liked singing, but disliked performing, and didn't record too much. Look her up on Youtube, there are a few of her songs there. She has a unique voice and wonderful sound.
PP&M were among the first memories I have of hearing music in our home. My parents were fans of the Limeliters, but we had a lot of folk music LPs around the house.
PS. I voted for Obama, and plan to again when he wins a second term.

Peter   April 29th, 2010 1:45 pm ET

As a college student and volunteer usher at the Mann Center in Philly the summer of 1981, I showed up early one evening for a PP&M concert and found them rehearsing a song on stage. No one was in the audience but me, sitting in the third row. When they finished the song, I stood up and applauded and Mary smiled and thanked me. What a sweet lady! I'll always cherish that memory.

flirtinw/disasster   April 29th, 2010 2:45 pm ET

Donald L, you be bawn an bred in de briar patch now ain you. All uppity wid de po-leece an de digns dat go dere an here but nebber away over yar. But howebber they sit they still a scritchin dey fleas a same as ebberboddy else. So set yoself an widdle de wood. Yonder by an by thangs'll sebble themselfs and you all'l feel bebber.

Cajazz76:24:8   April 29th, 2010 3:25 pm ET


You insight is 'smeared' through your impaired ability to see the truth. You appear, through more than just my eyes, to be ill with the disease called 'racism'...It is 'Colo-rectal Screening Month', have yours observed for blockages that may retard your brain from visualizing the proper anally retentive skills you lack to expel opinions of a president who has his poo-poo in one well-organized bag. Your ass-versely opinionated excrement stinks!

flirtinw/disasster   April 29th, 2010 3:39 pm ET

The fact that Cajazz can magically transform one person's opinion into 'racism' is one of the bigger problems facing the US. Opinion is opinion and harmless unless someone's looking for a soapbox or a fight. Focus on helping all Americans become productive members of society so we don't continue our slide into third worldom.

Cajazz76:24:8   April 29th, 2010 3:46 pm ET

@Donald L Allen

As 'jack', a fellow blogger said, you serve up "word salad", but I admire your courage to serve it up. It may take time to unscramble your meaning, but wherever you grow it, know that it is protected by the scarecrow that blows in the breeze of our First Amendment where it is displayed for the world to see......

Cajazz76:24:8   April 29th, 2010 3:58 pm ET


It doesn't require voodoo to see, given the fact it's worn on the sleeves of the vivid remarks sewn into your mind-set. One would have to be blind to be devoid of where the soapbox containing your washed-out opinions come from. You need to reach into that boxed cavity and grab a bar and wash the vile attitude exposed within your comments...regarding Donald L Allen..

Cajazz76:24:8   April 29th, 2010 4:22 pm ET


Your right to express yourself is fully protected, ass well, by the 'First Amendment" even though are "innocent of literary merit ". However, that innocence and your protection under the constitution does not provide for the demeaning of race. I am assured you are all white with my comments.....

Cajazz76:24:8   April 29th, 2010 4:27 pm ET



Your right to express yourself is fully protected, ass well, by the 'First Amendment" even though ewe are "innocent of literary merit ". However, that innocence and your protection under the constitution does not provide for the demeaning of race. I am assured you are all white with my comments.....Don't be so sheeple...ewe have your rights...use them in the pasture of integrity.

flirtinw/disasster   April 29th, 2010 4:45 pm ET

Cajazz, the only thing worse than your attempt at literary cleverness is your own self hatred. Ease up, brother.

Navajo Joe   April 29th, 2010 5:44 pm ET


At least it is self-hatred and is directed at moi and not at mon ami...

Navajo Joe   April 29th, 2010 6:19 pm ET

Hey caj, I have been trying to find you on the LKL blogs. I figured you would be scalping an attitude somewhere. Check your e-mail I have sent you. I was in the one dealing with immigration. So far my hair is still on my head, what is still left of it.

Navajo Joe   April 29th, 2010 6:27 pm ET


caj appears to have you covered...a few words to help you deal with him. Dont' Mess With Texas...we are long on looking out for each other. He is not hateful but he does have a very healthy attitude when it involves human dignity and the rights of others. I read some of your blogs and he has the correct comeback to you from what I understand of him. Maybe you should read a little deeper into his messages he sends out.

flirtinw/disasster   April 30th, 2010 12:06 pm ET

Eff Texas.

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 12:37 pm ET

flirtinw/disasster April 29th, 2010 2:45 pm ET
Donald L, you be bawn an bred in de briar patch now ain you. All uppity wid de po-leece an de digns dat go dere an here but nebber away over yar. But howebber they sit they still a scritchin dey fleas a same as ebberboddy else. So set yoself an widdle de wood. Yonder by an by thangs'll sebble themselfs and you all'l feel bebber.

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 12:52 pm ET


Proud of your comments above? You enjoy standing on your soapbox spewing bubbles of sectarianism motivated by contempt? I'll bet you're a real pillar in your community that propagates the seeds of angst toward all you do not understand.

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 12:58 pm ET


You personify a benighted prince of dark charm and benevolent repulsion...a true oxymoron..

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 1:39 pm ET

flirtinw/disasster April 29th, 2010 2:45 pm ET
Donald L, you be bawn an bred in de briar patch now ain you. All uppity wid de po-leece an de digns dat go dere an here but nebber away over yar. But howebber they sit they still a scritchin dey fleas a same as ebberboddy else. So set yoself an widdle de wood. Yonder by an by thangs'll sebble themselfs and you all'l feel bebber.

While you are confined to the crawl space of your willful nescience there is a world of omniscience reading your comment and are in postulation for the repose of your twisted and perverted psyche...I too am concerned for your serenity and harmony among those who reside in close proximity to you....

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 1:46 pm ET

flirtinw/disasster April 29th, 2010 2:45 pm ET
Donald L, you be bawn an bred in de briar patch now ain you. All uppity wid de po-leece an de digns dat go dere an here but nebber away over yar. But howebber they sit they still a scritchin dey fleas a same as ebberboddy else. So set yoself an widdle de wood. Yonder by an by thangs'll sebble themselfs and you all'l feel bebber.


flirtinw/disasster   April 30th, 2010 1:52 pm ET

Joel Chandler Harris reference notwithstanding....don't be concerned.

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 2:26 pm ET


Who isn't aware of the reference?'s how you used this day and age it is repulsive when characterizing someone...or their attributes

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 2:35 pm ET


Just keep in mind it was written in 40 languages and is renown worldwide, as are the contributors of these blogs..worldwide. Everyone who is aware of his publications knows Harris was well versed in the traditions of life on plantations, he once worked on one.

flirtinw/disasster   April 30th, 2010 2:36 pm ET

That's the first noteworthy thought you've relayed, Jazz. And you're right, it was a poor attempt at humor aimed more toward DL's incoherent bombastic nonsense than race or creed.

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 2:58 pm ET


Peace...thank you so much for a retraction...we all chide him in benign ways with no intent to harm him..all's in the past....friends?

flirtinw/disasster   April 30th, 2010 3:32 pm ET

2 humble wordsmiths passing in the ether....

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 3:55 pm ET


And all up in smoke...what a gas!

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 4:00 pm ET


Your moniker humbly reminds me of an old girlfriend that backed into the propeller of a Cessna...

flirtinw/disasster   April 30th, 2010 5:53 pm ET

That's where it comes from. Now you're scaring me.

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 6:50 pm ET

Fear not..she came in piece..butt was a little half-assed..

Cajazz76:24:8   April 30th, 2010 6:55 pm ET

Out of fear of Moderation...

Fear not...she came in piece...but was a little half-fast..

Dan   May 2nd, 2010 9:25 am ET

Just a few months ago I had finished off making a personal cd compilation of my favorite PP & M songs, here is the songs and track order . Even though their best stuff was the early material, it is interesting that four songs came from later albums:
Freight Train, Puff the Magic Dragon, Don’t Think Twice, Blowin’ in the Wind, The Cuckoo, Early Mornin’ Rain, Hangman, For Lovin’ Me, Sorrow, This Land is Your Land, Monday Morning, Golden Vanity, Lemon Tree, When the Ship Comes In, Jimmy Whalen, Stewball, Polly Von, Rolling Home, 500 Miles, Settle Down, If I Were Free, If I Had a Hammer, Because All Men are Brothers, Comings of the Roads, The Last Thing on My Mind, The Kid.

Nukemom1952   May 2nd, 2010 10:15 pm ET

Peter, Paul and Mary were a part of the soundtrack of our lives; in the early sixties, when folk music was heard hourly on the radio and seen weekly on TV (remember "Hootenanny?"), their ineffable sound and beautiful harmonies rose above the talented crowd who brought the music of history into the mainstream. Whether singing Dylan or Guthrie or giving a modern twist to songs written by forgotten authors whose words were current 200 years ago, they were a group who blended elements that created a catalogue that will still be heard after ALL of us are dead and gone.

I wish that I'd seen them perform live. I love their live concert recordings even better than their studio stuff, and I hope that sooner or later the pendulum that is modern music swings back to again embrace folk music so that those who have yet to be exposed to the lyrical harmonies of this amazing trio will have the chance to learn and enjoy the songs that they rendered so beautifully. After all, folk music is really the stories of the times, and their recordings are as topical now as they were when they were high on the charts. That is the ultimate gift of folk music, in the end.

Andrea   May 3rd, 2010 2:24 am ET

Thank you Nukemom for a beautiful epilogue. I remember belting out "Come mothers and fathers throughout the land, And don't criticize what you can't understand..." on my guitar in the late '60's. That was such a magical time for me as a 20 year old, and PP&M was a huge part of it. Does anyone else feel that time was the highlight of their life?

Jeff Lambert   May 8th, 2010 2:29 pm ET

(Typos corrected) In 1986, I was the grand prize winner of a contest sponsored by WNEW Radio. I wrote a poem–exactly 25 words–explaining what Peter,Paul & Mary meant to me (it was for their 25th anniversary). As a result, I and my wife were guests of Pete Fornatel (sp?) who picked us up in a limosine and drove us to P,P&M's Broadway 25th Anniversary concert and the after-show party, too. In the years that followed, my wife and I, our two daughters and several friends went back stage many, many times to visit with the trio. We were always greeted with hugs, whether it be at Tanglewood in Massachussetts, the Westbury Music Fair in New York or at the University of Masssahussets. P,P & M shaped my life values and I am very appreciative. It saddens me a lot that the trio has become a duo. The first line of my winning poem was, "Unknowingly, we're best friends...."

Alisha Cox   July 9th, 2010 8:22 am ET

CD Compilations are great when you want to hear long playing music on long trips.";;

Lily Walker   July 12th, 2010 9:53 pm ET

i have lots of cd compilation at home and most of them are rock and ballad.–.

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