Richie Havens

Posted in Music by chamblee54 on April 22, 2013

Richie Havens died this morning. He was 72 years old. In 1969, he was the first performer at Woodstock. Mr. Havens was featured in the movie, and became very popular. The promoters asked him to play longer, while the backstage chaos played out. “Freedom” was mostly improvised to fill this need.

In 1974, PG had the privilege of seeing Richie Havens. He was playing at Richards, a club on Monroe Drive. It was the 2am show, on a weeknight. There was not a large crowd. What crowd there was kept yelling for “Freedom”, as if Mr. Havens had an obligation to play it.

Mr. Havens played a Guild guitar. He strummed it hard, with his pick dragging down over the body past the air hole. It looked like a guitar would only last a show, or two, before he would wear scratch marks in the body. Indeed, he did change guitars in mid show that night.

Pictures are from The Library of Congress.

3 Responses

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  1. Anonymous said, on April 22, 2013 at 7:54 pm

    why are HOllywood actors taking the jobs others should have and becoming promoters of “stuff” ! So lame

  2. Richards | Chamblee54 said, on August 19, 2013 at 6:00 am

    […] Elton John, wearing a gorilla suit. PG saw three more shows (that he can remember) at Richards. Richie Havens was worth the two dollar admission. Soft Machine played in the winter of 1974. Larry Coryell played […]

  3. Richie Havens | Chamblee54 said, on April 28, 2018 at 9:04 am

    This is a repost. […]

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