Program Details

Jewish Singer-Songwriters' Contributions to the Folk Revival: The "Big Three" and Beyond

John Sprung
Jewish Culture & History / Music

Course Description

This program will feature stories, songs and singers from the 1930s to the folk revival of the 60s and 70s. Many people believe it all began with Bob Dylan in 1961, but the groundwork was laid in the 30s, 40s and 50s, with songs like Yip Harburg's, Buddy Can You Spare a Dime, Oscar Brand's, My Old Man, Lewis Allan's, The House I live In, and Tom Lehrer's, The Wild West is Where I Want to be. In addition to songs by the triumvirate of Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, and Leonard Cohen, contemporaries such as Steve Goodman, Arlo Guthrie, Peter Yarrow, Shel Silverstein, Carly Simon, Randy Newman, Janis Ian, Dick Weissman, Larry Block, and others will also be represented. The songs, like the times they illuminate, will be funny, sad and inspirational. 

About the Instructor

  • John Sprung was born and raised in New York. He is a graduate of the High School of Music & Art, Alfred University (BA), and St Johns University School of Law (JD). He combined his career as an attorney with being a folk-oriented singer/songwriter (but jokes that he never let his day job get in the way of his music). His corporate background included Divisional General Counsel for two Merrill Lynch subsidiaries, and several Board Directorships. His musical career includes two released CDs, Remember Me and Other Songs (2004), and Side Effects ( 2008). Side Effects was the number two album for a number of weeks on CD Baby's "Political Folk" category. He has performed his songs on radio and television, with numerous live performances at colleges and coffee houses.

Upcoming programs presented by John Sprung.

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