Richie Havens | Artist
Richard Pierce Havens was an American singer-songwriter and guitarist born 1941 in Brooklyn, New York. His music encompassed elements of folk, soul, and rhythm and blues, employing an intense and rhythmic guitar style and soulful covers of pop and folk songs. His career shot to fame following his mesmerising opening act at Woodstock. As a youth, Havens began organising his neighbourhood friends into a street corner doo-wop group. At age 16, he was performing with the McCrea Gospel Singers and at age 20 moved to Greenwich Village to immerse himself in the folk club scene. Havens' reputation for his solo performances quickly spread beyond the Village folk music circles and after cutting two early records signed on with Bob Dylan's manager Albert Grossman and landed a record deal with Verve Folkways. He released a string of excellent records through the late '60s and '70s, after which his career dipped for several decades however he continued to tour and write music for TV and commercials. He came back strongly in the '90s with a performance at President Bill Clinton's inauguration and made several excellent late career recordings. Standout albums include Mixed Bag, Something Else Again and Richard P. Havens 1983, all from 1968, The Great Blind Degree (1971), Wishing Well (2002), Grace of the Sun (2004) and the archival release Live at the Cellar Door (1990). Havens was of Native American descent on his father's side and of British West Indian descent on his mother's. His grandfather was a Blackfoot of the Montana-South Dakota area who, along with his great-uncle, joined Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, moved to New York City and settled on the Shinnecock Reservation on Long Island, New York.
Artist Website: richiehavens.com
Featured Albums: Richie Havens