Peter YarrowAs a successful artist and activist, Peter Yarrow’s talent is legendary. His musical creativity has always gone hand in hand with his commitment to social justice and equity in society.
Today, he’s reaching a whole new generation with his music and advocacy.
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As a successful artist and activist, Peter Yarrow’s talent is legendary. His gift for songwriting has produced some of the most moving songs Peter, Paul & Mary have recorded, including Puff, The Magic Dragon, Day Is Done, The Great Mandala and Light One Candle. His musical creativity has always gone hand in hand with his commitment to social justice and equity in society. And today, he’s reaching a whole new generation with his music and advocacy.
“We’re part of a long train ride,” is the way Peter Yarrow visualizes the many events that have highlighted a career spanning more than four decades. Yarrow places the success he’s had within a greater context, seeing his accomplishments as part of a tradition, to be credited and carried on. “When I was in high school,” he recalls, “I heard The Weavers’ concert at Carnegie Hall where they sang songs such as ‘If I Had a Hammer,’ and ‘Wasn’t That a Time.’ It was inspiring, and it showed me the extraordinary effect that music of conscience can have.” That lesson launched Peter on a lifelong path that is now, perhaps, in its most vital phase.
Yarrow has been on the front lines ever since the Civil Rights Movement of the early 1960s. Over the years, many issues have moved Peter to commit his time and talent: equal rights, peace, the environment, gender equality, homelessness, hospice care and education. All have utilized his skills as both a performer and an organizer. Along with his singing partners, Noel “Paul” Stookey and Mary Travers, Peter participated in the Civil Rights Movement, which brought them to Washington in 1963 to sing for the historic march led by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., as well as the equally historic Selma-Montgomery march in 1965. He went on to produce and coordinate numerous events for the Peace/anti-Vietnam War movement, including festivals at Madison Square Garden and Shea Stadium. These efforts culminated in his co-organizing the 1969 Celebration of Life, the famous march on Washington, in which some half-million people participated.