By Terry Roland

Eric_Andersen_Blue_River.jpgEric Andersen was there at the birth of the singer-songwriter movement of the 1960s. But, his story is not bound in time. While his contemporaries include Tim Hardin and Fred Neil, his is a distinct voice. He's a blues enthusiast who reads the Beats; He's a rocker who leans deep into his own poetry distinct from Dylan or Cohen. At times his music calls to mind a gentle blue river while at other times you may find yourself knee-deep in the rivers of the delta on a full moon night with screaming slide guitars calling in the distance. There is no stronger example of this than his 2007 live album, Blue Rain. If you explore the legacy of his recorded work over the last 40 years, you'll hear him trading off lyrical licks with Lou Reed, harmonizing with The Band's Rick Danko, co-writing with Townes Van Zandt or singing a tribute to Jack Kerouac.



By Audrey Goodman

About a year ago, I was really missing acoustic folk music- BAD.

I was embarking upon a self imposed break from music education, in order to refresh myself as a musician and explore some different paths to take. One of the first things on my task list of ‘things to do to re-energize the musician within,' was to see if I could reconnect with some kind of folk music scene here in Los Angeles. I had recently realized how much I missed having this genre of music heavily in my life, as it had been during my teen years when I was teaching myself guitar, writing songs, and hanging out at local coffeehouses in Cambridge to play and listen to others play. At first, I was not terribly optimistic to find a real ‘scene' of folk music in what I considered to be this slightly music-cynical, ‘folksily challenged' Los Angeles we live in. But I was determined that if such a community existed, I would find it if it took me weeks to do so. Interestingly enough, it only took me about a day!!

Read more: Music in the Mountains

Song of the South:
Morris Dees and Guy Carawan

The Birth of We Shall Overcome

By Ross Altman

We_Shall_Overcome_button.jpgMorris Dees is co-founder with Joe Levin of The Southern Poverty Law Center, the chief tracker and prosecutor of hate crimes in the United States. They started 39 years ago and somehow have survived decades of death threats from those they have brought law suits against, including members of the Ku Klux Klan, the American Nazi Party, and Aryan Nation skinheads like California's Tom Metzger.

They typically follow criminal trials in which the criminal justice system fails to bring justice to families of murdered victims by pursuing perpetrators in civil prosecutions to put the masterminds behind these crimes-against black people, gays and lesbians, Latinos, Jews and any other targeted minority-out of business. They have literally shut down the offices of the KKK in a number of states, after all-white juries have acquitted them on criminal charges, by gaining multi-million dollar verdicts against the leaders of such hate groups and then forcing them to sell off all of their assets to pay the judgments.

Read more: Song of the South