Clearwater Festival

The Clearwater Festival (officially The Great Hudson River Revival) is a music and environmental summer festival and America’s oldest and largest annual festival of its kind. This unique event has hosted over 15,000 people on a weekend in June for more than three decades. All proceeds benefit Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, Inc., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit environmental organization.

The Festival, a celebration for the Hudson River, features singer-songwriters, performers and musicians offering fun with a purpose — a diverse mix of contemporary, traditional and American Roots music, dance, family-oriented entertainment and storytelling. In addition to music and dance, a juried craft show, Green Living Expo, working waterfront, environmental education sites, and a Circle of Song featuring audience participation fill out the weekend's schedule.

All behind-the-scenes elements, such as the seven sustainable bio-diesel-powered stages,[1] recycling of food waste, volunteer meal preparation, and sponsor selection, are done with goals of sustainability and social responsibility in mind. Use of carpooling, bicycling, and public transportation are encouraged. The entire festival is wheelchair-accessible and staffed with American Sign Language interpreters. Clearwater was one of the first festivals to provide ASL interpreters, with 16 interpreters working at the 2011 event. The festival also includes services for the disabled, including 20 on-site wheelchairs and seating in front of every stage.[2]

Pete Seeger2 - 6-16-07 Photo by Anthony Pepitone
Pete Seeger at the 2007 Clearwater Festival

The Festival was founded in 1966 by Toshi Seeger and her husband, folk singer Pete Seeger, who regularly performed at it.[3][4][5] Among those who have performed over the years are Janis Ian, Arlo Guthrie, Tom Paxton, Michelle Shocked, Tish Hinojosa, Dizzy Gillespie, Paul Winter, Odetta, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Dar Williams, The Skatalites, Ani DiFranco, Taj Mahal, Alhaji Bai Konte, Toshi Reagon, Christine Lavin, Steve Earle, Shawn Colvin, Joan Osborne, Railroad Earth, Donna the Buffalo, Buckwheat Zydeco, Jonatha Brooke, Drive-By Truckers, Indigo Girls, Josh Ritter, Suzanne Vega, Jorma Kaukonen, Billy Bragg, David Bromberg, Peter Yarrow, The Low Anthem, The Felice Brothers, Punch Brothers, Toubab Krewe, the Foremen, and Justin Townes Earle.

In 2009, the Festival celebrated several auspicious occasions, including the 40th anniversary of the launch of the sloop Clearwater, the 90th birthday of Pete Seeger and the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson’s voyage up the river on the Half Moon. Fittingly, festival performers included some longtime folk-centric Clearwater traditions as well as many new artists who made their first appearance at the festival. First-timers in 2009 included veteran vocal group The Persuasions, Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, psychedelic rock band Dr. Dog, Elvis Perkins in Dearland and A.C. Newman, as well as singer-songwriters Alejandro Escovedo and Allison Moorer, plus bluegrass/jam band acts Old Crow Medicine Show and Cornmeal.

Emphasizing the importance of the Hudson River to the Festival, Hudson River Sloop Clearwater has added a number of river front activities such as kayaking and rowboating, and rides on the tall ships The Clearwater, The Mystic Whaler, and The Woody Guthrie.

Clearwater Festival
GenreJam band, Rock, Jazz, Blues
DatesJune 17–18, 2017
Location(s)Croton Point Park, Croton-on-Hudson, New York, United States
Years active1966 - present
WebsiteOfficial Website
Sloop Clearwater3 - Photo by Anthony Pepitone
Sloop Clearwater

History of the festival

The festival was founded in the wake of the Storm King Mountain controversy that focused on the Hudson River from 1963 - 1982.[6]The Festival has also had its origins in the Sloop Clearwater itself. To raise money to build the Sloop, Hudson River Sloop Clearwater founders Pete Seeger and friends held a series of small fundraising concerts[7] in the Hudson River Valley and at Sandy Hook in New Jersey, and passed a banjo around the crowd to collect donations. By 1978, the concerts had evolved into a land-based Festival at Croton Point Park, which hosted the Festival for a decade, until pollution problems from the park's landfill forced a relocation to a suburban college campus. It was not until 1999 that the Festival was able to move back to the park and the shores of the Hudson River.[8] The 2016 festival, which would have been the 50th anniversary of the festival, was cancelled so that resources could be directed to a substantial restoration of the sloop Clearwater.[9] The festival returned in 2017.

Mission of the festival

The Great Hudson River Revival is produced by Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, Inc., a nonprofit, member-supported, environmental organization, to raise funds and consciousness on the plight of the river and the earth, as well as uniting the community around the river. All proceeds go directly to support Clearwater’s environmental research, education, and advocacy to help preserve and protect the river and its tributaries, as well as communities in the river valley.

The Festival makes possible innovative educational initiatives such as Clearwater’s New Hudson River School, which has helped more than 430,000 young people and over 250,000 adults experience the wonders of the River from aboard the Sloop Clearwater.


  1. ^ "Clearwater looks to new generations", Times Herald Record, accessed 23 June 2011
  2. ^ "Clearwater festival brings music to deaf fans with stage-side sign-language-interpreters", NY Daily News, accessed 23 June 2011
  3. ^ Martin, Douglas (2013-07-11). "Toshi Seeger, Wife of Folk-Singing Legend, Dies at 91". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-08-07.
  4. ^ Amateau, Albert (2013-07-18). "Toshi Seeger, 91, co-founded Clearwater with Pete". The Villager. Retrieved 2013-08-07.
  5. ^ "Toshi Seeger, Wife of Pete Seeger, Dies at 91". Rafu Shimpo. 2013-07-19. Retrieved 2013-08-07.
  6. ^ Hayes, Madison A. (June 3, 2018). "The Regal Fight for Storm King Mountain". Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  7. ^ "Walking the Talk, Singing the Song" Archived 2011-07-24 at the Wayback Machine, Roll Magazine, p. 16, accessed 04 November 2010
  8. ^ "Festival Information" Archived 2010-07-06 at the Wayback Machine, Clearwater Festival website, accessed 04 November 2010
  9. ^ Clearwater Festival Retrieved 9 June 2016. Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links

Coordinates: 41°10′56″N 73°53′35″W / 41.18222°N 73.89306°W

Croton Point Park

Croton Point Park is a Westchester County park in the village of Croton-on-Hudson.

The park has several public attractions including: a miniature aircraft airport, boat launch, tent and RV camping, cabin rental,

cross-country skiing, fishing, group picnicking, hiking and walking trails, a museum, nature study, pavilions, a playground, swimming, and a beach.

Cry Cry Cry

Cry Cry Cry was a folk supergroup, consisting of Richard Shindell, Lucy Kaplansky, and Dar Williams. The band released a single eponymous album of cover songs on October 13, 1998.

Eighth Step Coffee House

The Eighth Step Coffee House was founded in Albany New York in 1967, by a group of local churches and was housed for 30 years in the basement of the First Presbyterian Church on the corner of State and Willett Streets.Small (100) concerts and weekly Open Mikes were held in the basement. Larger (300) concerts were held upstairs in the Assembly Hall, which features two Tiffany Windows, one a commemorative window for Joseph Henry.The Eighth Step lost its original home in 2000. It then moved to the Cohoes Music Hall, but after 2003 it had no fixed home. Since 2007 it has been located in Proctor's Theatre in Schenectady, New York. The Eighth Step is run by Margie Rosenkranz who is also attached to the Clearwater Festival in which Pete Seeger is the driving force. The Eighth Step has hosted performers Ani DiFranco, Janis Ian, Greg Brown, Utah Phillips, Sheila Jordan and Richie Havens to name a few.

The long list of known and unknown artists with whom The Step has worked includes Pete Seeger, Milt Hinton, Paula Robeson, Janos Starker, Ronnie Gilbert, Greg Brown, Holly Near, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Richie Havens, Guy Davis, Lost in the Trees and independent rock phenomenon Ani DiFranco. DiFranco first performed regionally at The Step to an audience of 40 people, then the following year she drew 400 people in the larger hall. The following year Rosenkranz and The Step produced her performance at the Palace Theatre in Albany, NY to over 2,600 people.

Grammy Award for Best Musical Album for Children

The Grammy Award for Best Musical Album for Children was an honor presented to recording artists for quality children's music albums at the Grammy Awards, a ceremony that was established in 1958 and originally called the Gramophone Awards. Honors in several categories are presented at the ceremony annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States to "honor artistic achievement, technical proficiency and overall excellence in the recording industry, without regard to album sales or chart position".The award for Best Musical Album for Children was first presented to producer Alan Menken and Tim Rice in 1994 for the soundtrack to the Disney film Aladdin.

The award was discontinued from 2012 in a major overhaul of Grammy categories. Starting in 2012, this category merged with the Best Spoken Word Album for Children category to form the new Best Children's Album category. This merger meant essentially returning to the categorization set-up prior to 1994 (although with a small name change), when recordings for children was covered by the Grammy Award for Best Album for Children alone.

Hudson River Sloop Clearwater

The Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, Inc. is a non-profit organization based in Beacon, New York that seeks to protect the Hudson River and surrounding wetlands and waterways through advocacy and public education. Founded by folk singer Pete Seeger with his wife Toshi Seeger in 1966, the organization is known for its sailing vessel, the sloop Clearwater, and for its annual music and environmental festival, the Great Hudson River Revival.

July 1

July 1 is the 182nd day of the year (183rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. 183 days remain until the end of the year.

It is the first day of the second half of the year. The end of this day marks the halfway point of a leap year. It also falls on the same day of the week as New Year's Day in a leap year.

The midpoint of the year for southern hemisphere DST countries occurs at 11:00 p.m.

July 9

July 9 is the 190th day of the year (191st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. 175 days remain until the end of the year.

Leo Kottke

Leo Kottke (born September 11, 1945) is an acoustic guitarist. He is known for a fingerpicking style that draws on blues, jazz, and folk music, and for syncopated, polyphonic melodies. He overcame a series of personal obstacles, including partial loss of hearing and a nearly career-ending bout with tendon damage in his right hand, to emerge as a widely recognized master of his instrument. He currently resides in the Minneapolis area with his family.

Focusing primarily on instrumental composition and playing, Kottke also sings sporadically, in an unconventional yet expressive baritone described by himself as sounding like "geese farts on a muggy day". In concert, Kottke intersperses humorous and often bizarre monologues with vocal and instrumental selections from throughout his career, played solo on his 6- and 12-string guitars.

MacTalla Mor

MacTalla Mor is a Celtic Roots Band that was formed in 2002 and is based near New York City. The band combines traditional Bagpipes and Gaelic singing with modern music styles including, rock, blues, jazz, reggae and hip hop. MacTalla is made up entirely of members of the Ofgang family.Since their inception MacTalla Mor has toured the United States and Canada. They have played at Caesar's Palace Las Vegas, Grandfather Mountain Highland Games, for ESPN, ABC and NBC TV and at Pete Seeger's Clearwater Festival.

The band has released four CDs. The CD "The New Colossus" released in 2008, was recorded in at A-Pawling Studio in Pawling New York in 2007. The CD's title track The New Colossus is based on a sonnet of the same name by Emma Lazarus the final lines of which were engraved on a bronze plaque in the pedestal of The Statue of Liberty in 1912.

Mean Venus

Mean Venus is an American hard rock band from New Jersey. The quintet consists of 'J' (lead singer and songwriter), Adrian Freyre & Marcelo Cardosa (guitar), Russ Ippoliti (drums), and Chigger (bass). Formed in early 2006, Mean Venus has shared the stage with numerous national acts including 7Mary3, Skid Row, Extreme, Ratt, Dokken, L.A.Guns, Stryper, King's X, Rainbow, UFO, Sebastian Bach and others. In April 2008, Mean Venus headlined the Hawaiian Chopper Magazine's Motorhead Classic in Honolulu, Hawaii. They also performed at 2008's Clearwater Festival. Mean Venus songs have received radio airplay all over the country (WDHA, WZZO, WYSP, etc.)

Paul Winter

Paul Winter (born August 31, 1939) is an American saxophonist who founded the Paul Winter Consort. He has recorded more than 40 albums and won seven Grammy Awards. He has toured and recorded in 52 countries and six continents. He often records while traveling in wilderness areas, including on rafts, mules, dog sleds, horses, kayaks, sailboats, steamers, tug-boats, and Land Rovers. He performs benefit concerts for environmental and world peace organizations.

Pollution of the Hudson River

Between 1947 and 1977, General Electric polluted the Hudson River by discharging polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), causing a range of harmful effects to wildlife and people who eat fish from the river or drink the water. Other kinds of pollution, including mercury contamination and cities discharging untreated sewage, have also caused problems in the river.

In response to this contamination, activists protested in various ways; for instance, musician Pete Seeger founded the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater and the Clearwater Festival to draw attention to the problem. Environmental activism led to passage of the federal Clean Water Act in 1972, as well as federal government designation of the river as a Superfund site in 1984.

Extensive remediation actions on the river began in the 1970s with the implementation of wastewater discharge permits and consequent reduction of wastewater discharges, and sediment removal operations, which have continued into the 21st century.

Puss n Boots

Puss n Boots is an American alternative country band from Brooklyn, New York, formed in 2008 that consists of members Norah Jones, Sasha Dobson and Catherine Popper. Their debut full-length album, No Fools, No Fun, was released on July 15, 2014, through Blue Note Records.

Richie Havens

Richard Pierce "Richie" Havens (January 21, 1941 – April 22, 2013) was an American singer-songwriter and guitarist. His music encompassed elements of folk, soul, and rhythm and blues. He had an intense and rhythmic guitar style (often in open tunings), played soulful covers of pop and folk songs, and opened at the 1969 Woodstock Festival.


Sukay is an Andean folk music band

The Felice Brothers

The Felice Brothers are an American folk rock/country rock band from New York.

The Weavers

The Weavers were an American folk music quartet based in the Greenwich Village area of New York City. They sang traditional folk songs from around the world, as well as blues, gospel music, children's songs, labor songs, and American ballads, and sold millions of records at the height of their popularity. Their style inspired the commercial "folk boom" that followed them in the 1950s and 1960s, including such performers as The Kingston Trio, Peter, Paul, and Mary, The Rooftop Singers, The Seekers, and Bob Dylan.

Toshi Seeger

Toshi Seeger (born Toshi Aline Ohta; July 1, 1922 – July 9, 2013) was an American filmmaker, producer and environmental activist. A filmmaker who specialized in the subject of folk music, Toshi's credits include the 1966 film Afro-American Work Songs in a Texas Prison and the Emmy Award-winning documentary Pete Seeger: The Power of Song, released through PBS in 2007. In 1966, Seeger and her husband, folk-singer Pete Seeger, co-founded the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, which seeks to protect the Hudson River and surrounding wetlands. Additionally, they co-founded the Clearwater Festival (officially known as The Great Hudson River Revival), a major music festival held annually at Croton Point Park in Westchester County, New York.

Studio albums
Live albums
Almanac Singers
The Weavers

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