About this project
Artists/People/Performances featured in Project:
Pete Seeger, George Wein, Joan Baez, The Decemberists, The Waifs, Fleet Foxes, Tao Rodriquez Seeger, The Avett Brothers, Odetta, Mavis Staples, Arlo Guthrie, Elvis Perkins in Dearland, JIm James, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Dar Williams, The Indigo Girls, The Del McCoury Band, Suzanne Vega, Doc Watson, Gillian Welch & David Rawlings,David Gahr, Murray Lerner, Bob Jones, Judy Collins, Theo Bikel, Bernice Johnson Reagon, Billy Bragg, The Low Anthem, Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings and many more!
In 1959, two visionaries – Pete Seeger and George Wein - created a musical phenomenon known as The Newport Folk Festival. It is the "grandfather" of contemporary music festivals and the legendary festival where Bob Dylan "plugged in" though its legacy reaches far beyond that mythical moment.
The Newport Folk Festival introduced its audiences to roots music from around the world, resurrected interest in the dying art of Cajun music and – on its New Folks stage - introduced the world to James Taylor, Arlo Guthrie, Van Morrison and Joni Mitchell.
Fifty Years of Folk is a multi-part documentary that celebrates over 50 years of musical excellence, explores the rich social activism of the times and honors the deep and lasting impact of the Newport Folk Festival.
How Your Support Will Help:
We are preparing our project for national launch/broadcast. Fifty Years of Folk is a totally independent project: we don't get government funding or grants. That's why your support is so important.
We are exploring broadcast opportunities and, already, PBS has expressed interest. While PBS will not provide funding or production support, it will give the project the national exposure it deserves.
We will use your Kickstarter pledges to hire the creative partners needed to move this project closer to broadcast. Reaching our goal will allow us to complete the rough cut and continue our marketing efforts.
Please pledge as much as you can. If we don’t reach our goal, we’re back to zero.
How the Project Came About:
In August 1996 – for the last of date of Joan Armatrading’s US tour – we (Beverly Penninger & Alyson Young) went to the Newport Folk Festival. It was a remarkable weekend and the beginning of a dream, a dream that history of the festival could be an amazing documentary film. We made a commitment to return each year and to make this dream a reality.
Two years later, after the festival, we met the producer, Bob Jones, and told him about our dream. He listened quietly and we exchanged contact information. He was pleasant and non-committal.
Then, in 2001, Bob Jones invited us to bring a camera crew to Newport to interview Joyce Wein, wife of co-founder George Wein. Her passion was inspiring and she motivated us to learn more and dig deeper into the history of the festival. The following year, Bob Jones invited us to New York City to conduct interviews with George Wein, Suzanne Vega, Oscar Brand, Odetta and folk photographer David Gahr.
Since that time, we have filmed countless interviews and hours of performance footage, capturing moments on-stage and off that are magical and inspirational, in addition to collecting hundreds of photographs and remarkable archival materials.
Without the benefit of deep pockets, we took the “stealth” approach to securing interviews. When someone connected to the festival came within driving distance of Charlotte, NC, our crew leapt into action: We interviewed Pete Seeger in Charleston, Peter Yarrow in Asheville, Joan Baez in Durham and Judy Collins in Newberry, SC. We made the two-hour drive from Newberry in a brutal ice storm, scared to death, but deliriously happy to have another wonderful interview.
After more than a decade of taping and a sizable personal investment, we remain captivated by the story and 100% committed to completing the documentary. From the outset, we have approached this project with passion and dedication and we are thrilled that you are willing to help us to the finish line.
The money raised from your pledge via Kickstarter will go directly to post production expenses and getting the rough cut to potential broadcast partners.
Thank you for committing your hard-earned dollars to this important project. We encourage you to tell your friends about it and we hope you carry a sense of pride and partnership in helping bring this documentary to life.
We appreciate your support.
For More Information:
Visit our website: www.nakatv.com. Feel free to email us for a full project proposal or to ask additional questions.
Part of our pledge money will be used to hire an artist to create an official Fifty Years of Folk logo. This original artwork/logo will be featured on the guitar picks, posters, mouse pads and tees. We will contact you to get t-shirt size prior to shipping.
All items will be shipped after project completion and once DVD's have been replicated and packaged. (International orders will require additional shipping fee.)
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