Pete Seeger

(Peter Seeger)

Pete Seeger
Pete Seeger
  • Born: May 3, 1919
  • Died: January 27, 2014
  • Nationality: American
  • Profession: Musician, Songwriter, Television Host

53

Quotes

14

Citations

71

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Videos

Peter Seeger was an American folk singer and social activist. A fixture on nationwide radio in the 1940s, he also had a string of hit records during the early 1950s as a member of the Weavers, most notably their recording of Lead Belly's "Goodnight, Irene", which topped the charts for 13 weeks in 1950. Members of the Weavers were blacklisted during the McCarthy Era. In the 1960s, Seeger re-emerged on the public scene as a prominent singer of protest music in support of international disarmament, civil rights, counterculture, and environmental causes.

Quotes
Quote Topics Cited
Did Lincoln hate America when he voted against the Mexican War? Did Mark Twain hate America when he made speeches against the Spanish American War? If you love your country you will find ways to speak out … Nationalism & Treason ;Citizenship & Patriotism
Hard Hitting Songs for Hard Hit People Labor Unions, Labor Relations & Strikes
Heaven’s Yes. I was hopelessly naïve regarding Joseph Stalin. I thought he just drove too hard. Liberals & Conservatives
I am not going to answer any questions as to my association, my philosophical or religious beliefs or my political beliefs, or how I voted in any election, or any of these private affairs. I think these are very improper questions for any American to be asked, especially under such compulsion as this. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
I have been singing folksongs of America and other lands to people everywhere. I am proud that I never refused to sing to any group of people because I might disagree with some of the ideas of some of the people listening to me. I have sung for rich and poor, for Americans of every possible political and religious opinion and persuasion, of every race, color, and creed. The House committee wished to pillory me because it didn’t like some few of the many thousands of places I have sung for. Loyalty & Loyalty Oaths
I sang for a sector of the population that didn’t think much of the House UnAmerican Activities Committee. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
If I hated the United States, I would have left it long ago. Citizenship & Patriotism
If the world is to be put together it will not be done by large organizations. It will be done by millions of small organizations…. Participation: That’s what is going to save the human race. Reform, Change, Transformation & Reformers
If you love your country you’ll find ways somehow to speak out to do what you think is right. Nationalism & Treason ;Citizenship & Patriotism
My father, Charles Seeger, got me into the Communist movement. He backed out around '38. I drifted out in the '50s. I apologized for following the party line so slavishly, for not seeing that Stalin was a supremely cruel misleader. Political Parties & Machines
Now I wished I had a bushel Wished I had a peck Wished I had old Hitler With a rope around his neck. Hey, round, round Hitler's grave Round, round we go Gonna lay that poor boy down He won't get up no more. I'm a-goin' to Berlin To Mister Hitler's town I'm gonna take my forty-four And blow his playhouse down. Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle
Technology will save us if it doesn't wipe us out first. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
This Machine Kills Hate Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle
We didn’t sell out our last concert. We’ve got to get the John Birch Society to attack us before the next concert. Liberals & Conservatives
According to my definition of God, I'm not an atheist. Because I think God is everything. Whenever I open my eyes, I'm looking at God. Whenever I'm listening to something, I'm listening to God. Religion & God
Again, I say I will be glad to tell what songs I have ever sung, because singing is my business. Business, Commerce & Finance
Being generous of spirit is a wonderful way to live.
But I decline to say who has ever listened to them, who has written them, or other people who have sung them.
Do you know the difference between education and experience? Education is when you read the fine print; experience is what you get when you don't. Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training
Down through the centuries, this trick has been tried by various establishments throughout the world. They force people to get involved in the kind of examination that has only one aim and that is to stamp out dissent.
Education is when you read the fine print. Experience is what you get if you don't. Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training
Historically, I believe I was correct in refusing to answer their questions.
I am not going to answer any questions as to my association, my philosophical or religious beliefs or my political beliefs, or how I voted in any election, or any of these private affairs.
I am saying voluntarily that I have sung for almost every religious group in the country, from Jewish and Catholic, and Presbyterian and Holy Rollers and Revival Churches, and I do this voluntarily.
I believe that my choosing my present course I do no dishonor to them, or to those who may come after me.
I came along and was a teenager in the Depression, and nobody had jobs. So I went out hitchhiking, when I met a man named Woody Guthrie. He was the single biggest part of my education. Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training
I came from an intellectual family. Most were doctors, preachers, teachers, businessmen. My grandfather was a small businessman. His father was an abolitionist doctor, and his father was an immigrant from Germany. Families, Children & Parenting
I decline to discuss, under compulsion, where I have sung, and who has sung my songs, and who else has sung with me, and the people I have known.
I feel that my whole life is a contribution. Life
I fought for peace in the fifties. War & Peace
I have sung for Americans of every political persuasion, and I am proud that I never refuse to sing to an audience, no matter what religion or color of their skin, or situation in life. Life ;Religion & God
I have sung in hobo jungles, and I have sung for the Rockefellers, and I am proud that I have never refused to sing for anybody.
I keep reminding people that an editorial in rhyme is not a song. A good song makes you laugh, it makes you cry, it makes you think.
I like to say I'm more conservative than Goldwater. He just wanted to turn the clock back to when there was no income tax.
I live in the country, so I get a fair amount of exercise. We heat our house with wood, so I split wood. We also live on a steep hill, and I have to rake and put in cross-stitches to keep the road from washing out when there's a big rain.
I love my country very dearly, and I greatly resent the implication that some of the places that I have sung and some of the people that I have known, and some of my opinions, whether they are religious or philosophical, make me less of an American. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex
I still call myself a communist, because communism is no more what Russia made of it than Christianity is what the churches make of it.
I think these are very improper questions for any American to be asked, especially under such compulsion as this. I would be very glad to tell you my life if you want to hear of it. Life
I try to sing many different kinds of songs. If I sing a batch of humorous songs, I'll throw in a deadly serious song. Or if I'm singing too many serious songs, I'll throw in a ridiculous song, to mix it up.
I want to turn the clock back to when people lived in small villages and took care of each other.
If I've got a talent, it's for picking the right song at the right time for the right audience. And I can always get people to sing with me. Time
If there's something wrong, speak up!
I'm still a communist in the sense that I don't believe the world will survive with the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer - I think that the pressures will get so tremendous that the social contract will just come apart.
It's a very important thing to learn to talk to people you disagree with.
I've found that festivals are a relatively painless way to meet people and make a few points that need making, without having to hit them over the head with too many speeches.
My mother was a very good violinist; my father was a musicologist and spent most of his life in academia. Life
One of the things I'm most proud of about my country is the fact that we did lick McCarthyism back in the fifties.
Some of my ancestors were religious dissenters who came to America over three hundred years ago. Others were abolitionists in New England in the eighteen forties and fifties.
Songs won't save the planet, but neither will books or speeches.
The good and bad are all tangled up together. American popular music is loved around the world because of its African rhythm. But that wouldn't have happened if it wasn't for slavery. Music, Chants & Rapps
When you play the 12-string guitar, you spend half your life tuning the instrument and the other half playing it out of tune. Life
When you're facing an opponent over a broad front, you don't aim for the opponent's strong points, important though they may be. Pick a little outpost that you can capture and win. And then you find another place that you can capture and win it, and then you move slowly toward the big places.
You'd be surprised how many stupid mistakes I've made. I make stupid mistakes all the time, and some of them have been very big stupid mistakes. Time

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