Legendary Folk Pioneer Fred Hellerman Of The Weavers Passes At 89
September 12, 2016 at 1:09 PM (PT)
FRED HELLERMAN, a founding member of the influential folk music group THE WEAVERS, died on SEPTEMBER 1st at his WESTON, CT, home, after a lengthy illness, according to his son CALEB.
THE WEAVERS were formed in the late '40s by HELLERMAN, PETE SEEGER, LEE HAYS and RONNIE GILBERT, helping popularize folk music with recordings including “Goodnight Irene” and “On Top Of Old Smoky.” The group disbanded after being blacklisted by anti-COMMUNISTS in the early '50s but performed again into the '60s and then at a reunion concert at CARNEGIE HALL in 1980.
HELLERMAN also produced ARLO GUTHRIE’s classic 1967 record, “Alice’s Restaurant,” and worked as a composer, arranger and songwriter
The BROOKLYN-born HELLERMAN began collaborating in the YIDDISH theater before learning to play guitar while serving in the U.S. COAST GUARD, then began collaborating with other musicians when he lived in NEW YORK.
He moved to WESTON in 1969 and installed a recording studio in the home often visited by SEEGER and others.