Posted by themusicsover on December 18, 2011
January 25, 1934 – December 18, 2011
Warren Hellman was a successful private equity investor whose Hellman & Friedman rose to become a multi-billion dollar firm. He was also a philanthropist and music junkie who founded AND funded San Francisco’s popular Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival. A banjo player himself, Hellman launched the Golden Gate Park event in 2001 to an audience of just 13,000. Since then, it has swelled to be one of the world’s greatest music events, drawing as many 500,000 each year over two days. And the best part, it is FREE to attend as Hellman’s gift back to the city. The inaugural festival presented just four acts on the main stage and another five on its second. Performers included Emmylou Harris, Alison Krauss, and Hazel Dickens. The 2011 event hosted over 100 performers including Chris Isaak, Bright Eyes, M. Ward, Steve Earle, Robert Plant, and Del McCoury. Warren Hellman was 77 when he died from complications of leukemia on December 18, 2011. Hellman reportedly left a trust fund to finance future festivals.
Do yourself a favor and attend Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival next year!
Posted in Musician | Tagged: Alison Krauss, Bright Eyes, Chris Isaak, Del McCoury, Emmylou Harris, Hazel Dickens, Robert Plant, Steve Earle, Warren Hellman | Leave a Comment »
Posted by themusicsover on April 22, 2011
June 1, 1935 – April 22, 2011
Hazel Dickens was a popular Appalachian bluegrass and folk singer, songwriter and musician who was revered for her beautiful voice as well as for her socially driven lyrics that tended to touch on feminism and pro-union causes. Born into a poor mining family in West Virginia, Dickens became friends with Pete Seeger’s brother and fellow musician Mike Seeger, who prompted her desire to get involved with the highly active Baltimore-Washington folk music scene of the ’60s. She and Seeger’s wife, Alice Gerard went on to perform and record as Hazel & Alice. By the mid ’70s, Dickens was working as a solo artist. Four of her early recordings can be heard in the award-winning mining documentary, Harlan County, USA. She also appeared in the film as well as Matewan and Songcatcher. Although she stopped putting out albums in the mid ’80s, Dickens could still be found performing live for many years to come, even as recently as at Austin’s SXSW music conference in March of 2011. Hazel Dickens passed away on April 22, 2011. She was 75.
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Posted in Bluegrass, Folk, Musician, Singer, Songwriter | Tagged: Hazel & Alice, Hazel Dickens, Pete Seeger | Leave a Comment »