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Joan Baez – We Shall Overcome At Woodstock
The Mexican-American Joan Baez offered a peaceful end to a chaotic first day of Woodstock. The female equivalent of folk god Bob Dylan, the pregnant Baez took the state and offered a serene playlist for the crowd just before rain washed over the Bethel, NY event.
Baez is most well known for her career which has spanned 50 years and includes 30 albums with songs recorded in as many as eight languages. She is revered for her interpretation of other artists’ work such as Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, The Rolling Stones, Stevie Wonder, The Beatles and a myriad of others.
With the release of her first two albums titled “Joan Baez” in 1959 and “Joan Baez Vol. 2” in 1961, Baez enjoyed commercial success with her single “There But For Fortune” which became a top ten hit in the UK in 1965. After the release of the 1968 albums “Any Day Now” and “David’s Album” which was recorded for her husband who had been jailed for draft dodging, Baez was booked to perform at Woodstock.
The Woodstock performance took place around 12:55am and included a speech to the crowd of how her husband had been arrested as well as an a capella performance of the song “Swing Low Sweet Chariot”.
After Woodstock 1969, Baez has moved in different musical directions and seen success within many different veins. She has displayed activism in being supportive of such causes as the anti-war movement, human rights, gay and lesbian rights, civil rights, and environmental causes.
Baez, now age 68 remains active in her social causes as well as her music career. Her most recent concert was in 2008 at the Montreux Jazz Festival in Montreux, Switzerland and released her 24th studio album on September 9, 2009. Her Woodstock performance is featured on the 1970 documentary as well as the 1990 supplemental “Woodstock: The Lost Performances“.