Monday, April 22, 2013

Richie Havens, 1941-2013

   He'll always be best known for opening Woodstock, both the festival and the film. But Richie Havens had a long career -- he stopped touring only three years ago -- and wielded one of the most beautiful voices and one of the most distinctive acoustic guitar styles in folk music.
Richie Havens at Woodstock
   He was a strong songwriter -- he wrote "Handsome Johnny," which was part of that Woodstock set, with Louis Gossett Jr. -- but he was primarily known as a distinctive interpreter of other artist's work. He performed memorable versions of several Bob Dylan songs, perhaps most notably "Just Like a Woman," and he had a hit with a cover of George Harrison's "Here Comes the Sun."
   He died suddenly of a heart attack on Monday, April 22. He was 72.

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