Tags: ronnie gilbert | dies | the weavers | folk | singer

Ronnie Gilbert, Folk Singer and Star of 'The Weavers,' Dead at 88

By    |   Monday, 08 Jun 2015 08:49 AM

Ronnie Gilbert, a founding member of the influential 1950s folk quartet The Weavers, died Saturday at her Mill Valley, California, home. She was 88.

Gilbert — along with Pete Seeger, Lee Hays, and Fred Hellerman — created the sound behind the Weavers, which popularized songs like "On Top of Old Smokey," Lead Belly's "Goodnight Irene," "The Hammer Song," and Woody Guthrie's "So Long, It's Been Good to Know Yuh," according to The New York Times.

Groups like The Kingston Trio, the Limeliters, and Peter, Paul & Mary were "direct musical descendants" of the Weavers' influence, which could also be seen in such acts as Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, and Phil Ochs, The Times noted.

"Amidst their success, the group maintained their progressive and leftist politics, which drew the eye and ire of those in the anti-communist movement of the 1950s," Rolling Stone reported. "In 1951, the Weavers were investigated by the Senate Internal Security Subcommittee, which sought to probe potentially subversive citizen threats, and soon they were blacklisted from performing and recording."

After the blacklisting, the group broke up but came back together in 1955, minus Seeger, and continued performing until 1964.

Gilbert, who had married and divorced, performed in a sold-out Weavers reunion concert in Carnegie Hall in1980 and then appeared in regional theaters in the 1990s in a one-woman show about labor organizer Mary Harris, also known as Mother Jones, according to The Times.

Many people shared their condolences on social media.











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Ronnie Gilbert, a founding member of the influential 1950s folk quartet The Weavers, died Saturday at her Mill Valley, California, home. She was 88.
ronnie gilbert, dies, the weavers, folk, singer
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2015-49-08
Monday, 08 Jun 2015 08:49 AM
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