Springsteen leads Seeger 90th birthday tribute

Wed Mar 18, 2009 4:44pm EDT
 
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By David J. Prince

NEW YORK (Billboard) - Bruce Springsteen, Dave Matthews, Eddie Vedder, John Mellencamp and Emmylou Harris are among the dozens of musicians who will celebrate American folk music legend Pete Seeger's 90th birthday with a gala concert at Madison Square Garden on May 3.

The event, dubbed "The Clearwater Concert: Creating the Next Generation of Environmental Leaders," will raise funds and awareness for Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, an environmental organization founded by Seeger in the 1960s to preserve and protect the Hudson River.

Other artists scheduled to appear include Steve Earle, Joan Baez, Juanes, Richie Havens, Kris Kirstofferson, Tom Morello, Billy Bragg, Michael Franti and Ben Harper.

Celebrations honoring Seeger's musical legacy and social activism will go on throughout the year. The Madison Square Garden birthday concert is part of a series of 90th birthday events benefiting Clearwater, which is also marking its 40th anniversary.

Wilco's Jeff Tweedy will play a rare acoustic solo set at Clearwater's annual "Spring Splash" fundraiser in Beacon, N.Y., on March 28. Tweedy and Seeger will perform together at the sold-out event.

Blues singer Susan Tedeschi, folk hero Arlo Guthrie, "newgrass" sensations Old Crow Medicine Show and Alejandro Escovedo are some of the artists headlining the annual Clearwater Festival in Croton, N.Y., on June 20-21. The Persuasions, indie favorites Dr. Dog and Elvis Perkins in Dearland, New Pornographers frontman A.C. Newman, and Allison Moorer are among the dozens of other performers announced Wednesday on the festival's website (here).

Seeger will be performing numerous times during the two-day festival, and his grandson (and frequent collaborator) Tao Rodriguez-Seeger will also play a set with his band.

All of the money raised at the events support Clearwater's environmental research, education and advocacy efforts to help preserve and protect the Hudson River.   Continued...

 
<p>Musician Bruce Springsteen performs during halftime for Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa, Florida February 1, 2009. REUTERS/Jeff Haynes</p>