Monthly Archives: May 2016

Free to Be and O, Mary

“Free to Be” is the one song on our FFM spring concert program that the FFM has performed before–the kids sang it at our very first concert, in May of 2013. I’m happy for the kids who have joined us since that time to get to know this optimistic and

Hammer Songs

We have three songs on this concert program that use a hammer as a central image. And there are more folk songs about hammers, like the Lead Belly classic “Take This Hammer”: Were Pete Seeger and Lee Hays thinking partly of John Henry when they chose a hammer to be

“Midnight Special”

My original plan was to program “Midnight Special” last fall with our other train songs, since the Midnight Special is, well, a train. But as I thought about the words more, I started to like the idea of moving it to this spring, with our focus on social justice.

“John Henry”

  David Bromwich writes in the New York Review of Books, “Let me start with a proposition: the great social calamity of our time is that people are being replaced by machines” (“Trapped in the Virtual Classroom,” July 9, 2015).

“People Have the Power”

Some of the songs we’re singing this spring come with a rich background. I thought I might say a few things here about the history of some of the songs or about why these particular songs are appearing on our program (out of the hundreds of possibilities).