By Jasper Lapienski
As the last of 25 participants in the first Freedom & Struggle Song Swap arrived on Saturday, February 23, 2019, Charlie King -- 2018 PMN Artist-in-Residence and host of this month's swap -- asked us to move our chairs back to accommodate everyone.
The new, monthly song swap in Greenfield is co-sponsored by Dance Spree, a community group that I lead which hosts weekly freestyle boogies as well as workshops and other community events, such as a debate of candidates for statewide offices who belong to parties that are are excluded from the two party duopoly. The song Swap has two main objectives: to bring home the singing of freedom songs, and to bring singers and dancers into contact with one another, encouraging crossover between the groups.
The evening included a whole lot of Pete Seeger songs, and thanks to a loan of songbooks from Peter Blood & Annie Patterson, everyone was able to sing along. Attendees included Ben Grosscup, PMN executive director; Storm, Steering Committee member; and Rob Peck, MC of the 2018 summer concert.
To be held on the 4th Saturday of every month, the song swap takes place at The Episcopal Church of St James & Andrew in downtown Greenfield, leading up to and into that night's freestyle dance. We hope you'll join us for both the singing and the dancing, month after month!
For more info on the song swap go to www.peoplesmusic.org/events - more on the dance go to www.dancespree.org
Upcoming swaps: March 23 with Michael Nix; April 27 with Ben Grosscup; May 25 - still seeking facilitator.