Roots Celebrates Tim Hardin’s Birthday!

December 23rd, 2009
Tim Hardin's Woodstock Piano

Tim Hardin's Woodstock Piano; Remembering Tim on 12/23

Tim Hardin (1941-1980) moved to the Woodstock area in 1968 with his wife Susan Morss and his young son Damion. Already the town was a thriving music destination— with The Band, Bob Dylan, the Mothers of Invention, Richie Havens and the Blues Magoos in residence. It is said that Hardin, of all the songwriters in early 1960s Greenwich Village, was the best. His first album, recorded for Verve in 1966, yielded such tunes as “Reason to Believe,” which was covered by Rod Stewart, and “Hang On To a Dream” which became a staple for The Nice. In the aftermath of this release Bob Dylan referred to Hardin as the best songwriter alive.

It was with Tim Hardin 2, his second album, that the songwriter released “If I Were a Carpenter,” his most memorable song. Also on the album were such tunes as “Black Sheep Boy” and “Lady Came from Baltimore.” During an eight-month period from 1965 to 1966 some of his best-known songs were written on a piano in his room in Los Angeles. By the time Hardin moved to Woodstock his career was taking off.  Read the rest of this entry »

Bob Fass on the Woodstock Sound-Outs

June 22nd, 2009
Bob Fass


For more than 40 years Bob Fass has hosted Radio Unnameable on Pacifica Radio’s WBAI. Fass’s show pioneered free-form radio. He has welcomed them all—the famous as well as the lesser known. Some of the former include Bob Dylan, Arlo Guthrie, The Fugs, and Happy and Artie Traum.

In the late sixties Fass emceed a series of music festivals on the outskirts of Woodstock, NY. As Fass writes in his foreword to Roots of the 1969 Woodstock Festival, these were known as the Sound-Outs: “Someone from USCO called it Sound-Out because it wasn’t a Be-In.” He continues,

“We invited the best musicians we knew. Stagehands built a stage. Macrobiotic, energy-transforming food was prepared and sold for pennies a bowl. Mind-expanding goulash imported from around the world was abundant. It was a potent mix of the new and the traditional. There was a whole lot of love and whole lot of creativity and community spirit . . .”

 The festivals were open-air affairs held on Pan Copeland’s farm in West Saugerties, NY. Some of the acts associated with the Sound-Outs include Ellen McIlwaine’s Fear Itself, the Colwell-Winfield Blues Band, Tim Hardin, Don McLean, Scott Fagan, Frank Wakefield, and Cat Mother and the All Night Newsboys.