Rise Up and Sing

Hope + change through song

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Preface by Pete Seeger

Pete Seeger wrote the Introduction to Rise Up Singing. We asked him if he wanted to write the intro also for the new book and he said: "Ask somebody much younger!" A year before he died, however, we spent a day going over plans in detail for the new book. He agreed to have a shot at dictating a very brief preface. This is what he spoke (which will be included in Rise Again):

Why is singing good for the planet? Nobody can put it in words. But if there is a human race here in a hundred years, my guess is that one of the main reasons will be we found ways we can sing together – different religions, different languages. The act of singing together makes us realize we’re human beings – we can’t put it in words.  And to a certain extent all the arts are important that way – the dancing arts, the cooking arts, the humor arts.

But the older I get the more I’m convinced that if there’s a human race here, singing will be one of the main reasons why. Singing together, not solo singing.  Singing together. Families can sing together and strangers can sing together. People who think they hate each other can sing together.

And perhaps if we find the right songs, people so filled with hate they carry a gun with them: we can reach them too. Who knows?


        - Pete Seeger, Beacon NY, February 2, 2013