Posts Tagged ‘Folk music revival’

579_carolyn hester_05Carolyn Hester (born January 28, 1937, in Waco, Texas) is an American folk singer and songwriter. She was a figure in the early 1960s folk music revival.

Carolyn Hester’s first album was produced by Norman Petty in 1957. In 1960, she made her second album for the Tradition Records label run by the Clancy Brothers. She became known for "The House of the Rising Sun" and "She Moved Through the Fair".

Hester was one of many young Greenwich Village singers who rode the crest of the 1960s folk music wave. She appeared on the cover of the May 30, 1964, issue of the Saturday Evening Post. According to Don Heckman of the Los Angeles Times, Hester was 579_carolyn hester_01"one of the originals—one of the small but determined gang of ragtag, early-’60s folk singers who cruised the coffee shops and campuses, from Harvard Yard to Bleecker Street, convinced that their music could help change the world." Hester was dubbed "The Texas Songbird," and was politically active, spearheading the controversial boycott of the television program, Hootenanny, when Pete Seeger was blacklisted from it.

After failing to convince Joan Baez to sign with Columbia Records, John H. Hammond signed Hester in 1960. However, Hammond has a different recollection of events. In his autobiography, "John Hammond on Record," he maintains that he passed on Baez "..because she was asking a great deal of money while still a relatively unknown artist." That same year Hester met Richard Fariña and they married eighteen days later. They separated after less than two years.

579_carolyn hester_02In 1961, Hester met Bob Dylan and invited him to play on her third album, her first on the Columbia label. Her producer, John H. Hammond, quickly signed Dylan to the label.

Hester turned down the opportunity to join a folk trio with Peter Yarrow and Paul Stookey. With Mary Travers the trio found stardom as Peter, Paul, & Mary. Although Hester collaborated with Bill Lee and Bruce Langhorne, she concentrated exclusively on traditional material. In the late 1960s, unable to succeed as a folk-rock artist, she explored psychedelic music as part of the "Carolyn Hester Coalition", before drifting out of the music industry of the period.

579_carolyn hester_03Hester has disputed David Hajdu‘s depiction of her marriage to Fariña in his book Positively 4th Street: The Lives and Times of Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Mimi Baez Fariña, and Richard Fariña. She also identified supposed exaggerations in his description of the relationships among Dylan, Baez, Hester, and the Fariñas. Hester denies that Fariña was so close to Dylan, as some rock historians claim, and strongly disputes that Fariña was in any way responsible for Dylan’s success, as Hajdu insinuated. Hajdu also suggested that Hester had an ongoing rivalry with Baez and her sister Mimi. To this day, Hester maintains that, on the contrary, she did not and does not know Baez well, and that they never were rivals, personally or professionally.

579_carolyn hester_04In 1969, Hester married the jazz pianist-producer-songwriter, David Blume, the composer of The Cyrkle‘s 1966 Top 40 hit "Turn Down Day." Together they formed the Outpost label. They also started an ethnic dance club in Los Angeles.

In the 1980s she returned to recording and touring. She and Nancy Griffith performed Bob Dylan’s "Boots of Spanish Leather" at Dylan’s Thirtieth Anniversary Tribute Concert at Madison Square Garden in 1992.

In 1997, Hester toured Germany for the first time. Her tour manager was Dirk Stursberg of M&K Management. As a friend, she visited his home and bought a Teddy from his wife’s company, the Teddy Atelier Stursberg. A year later, Hester played in a festival in Denmark.

In 1999, Hester released a Tom Paxton tribute album. She appeared on the A&E television Biography of Bob Dylan in August 2000.

Blume died in the spring of 2006. Hester closed the dance club, Cafe Danssa, a year after her husband’s death.

She continues to perform and tour with her daughters, Amy Blume and Karla Blume. They recorded her latest album, which was released in 2010, We Dream Forever.

Text from Wikipedia 

I have two great records with the Carolyn Hester Coalition, “Carolyn Hester Coalition” from 1969 and “Magazine” from 1970 but they are unfortunately in a format that WordPress don’t allow. This is pure prog rock and completely different from the music in these videos. I’ll see if I can find a converter on the net and post some cuts from these records later on – Ted

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