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Period Pieces: Songs From Women's Mvt for Men
Peggy Seeger
Period Pieces: Songs From Women's Mvt for Men
Genres: Country, Folk, Pop
  •  Track Listings (17) - Disc #1

Peggy Seeger's name tends to be closely associated with those of some prominent men in folk circles. Mike Seeger is her brother; Pete Seeger is her half-brother. And she was married to the late British troubadour Ewan MacC...  more »


CD Details

All Artists: Peggy Seeger
Title: Period Pieces: Songs From Women's Mvt for Men
Members Wishing: 1
Total Copies: 0
Label: Tradition Records
Original Release Date: 8/25/1998
Release Date: 8/25/1998
Genres: Country, Folk, Pop
Styles: Classic Country, Traditional Folk, Contemporary Folk, Singer-Songwriters
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 600491107822

Peggy Seeger's name tends to be closely associated with those of some prominent men in folk circles. Mike Seeger is her brother; Pete Seeger is her half-brother. And she was married to the late British troubadour Ewan MacColl for 32 years; indeed, she inspired him to write the Roberta Flack chestnut "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face." Peggy, however, is a pivotal figure in folk music in her own right, as this winning concept album proves. Here she revives and restores an array of unflinching feminist anthems she's penned over the decades. The classic "I'm Gonna Be an Engineer" targets the career limitations foisted upon ambitious women of her generation ("I been a sucker ever since I was a baby / As a daughter, as a wife, as a mother and as a 'dear' / But I'll fight them as a women, not a lady / I'll fight them as an engineer"). "Reclaim the Night" adroitly addresses rape with equal forthrightness: "A husband has lawful rights, can take his wife whene'er he likes." And that's just a sampling; there aren't a whole lot of associated issues these "women's songs for men and women" don't address--with wit, wisdom, and zest. --Steven Stolder

CD Reviews

Feminism and other issues
Peter Durward Harris | Leicester England | 01/20/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"As befits a musical member of the Seeger family, Peggy had very strong opinions about many issues and sometimes sang about them. This collection gathers together many of those songs although some have been remixed or re-recorded. Sometimes lyrics were changed to bring them up to date for 1998 - topical songs can go out of date very quickly. Peggy originally recorded most of the songs here for three earlier albums, these being Penelope isn't working any more (1977), Different therefore equal (1978) and Familiar faces (1988), though some are newly recorded. The album comes with interesting liner notes including comments by Peggy about the songs and their relevance to 1998.Peggy was partner to Ewan MacColl for many years up to his death in 1989. He famously wrote a song about their first meeting (The first time ever I saw your face) that eventually became a major hit for Roberta Flack. Curiously, her other major hit (Killing me softly with his song) was also inspired by a singer, as it was about a Don McLean concert. Among the various issues on which Peggy expresses her opinion are equality - or lack of - with men (I'm gonna be an engineer, Different therefore equal, Twenty years), pregnancy and babies (The nine month blues, Lullaby for a very new baby), generational disputes (Different tunes), battered wives (Winnie and Sam), rape (Reclaim the night), missing people (Missing), industrial strife (Union woman II), trade boycotts (Support the boycott), industrial injuries (R S I), the role of women in the church (Turncoat), role reversal (B-side) and the long-running Greenham common peace campaign (Woman on wheels, Carry Greenham home). The album is rounded off by Darling Annie, a male-female duet in which the man wants them to marry but the woman just wants them to live together, so that's what they do.You may not agree with all of Peggy's views but these songs are still hugely entertaining. If you enjoy folk music with a political edge, this is for you, especially if you interested in the female perspective."
Songs spanning over 30 years of Women's Issues.
Mr. B. E. Power | Brighton, UK | 08/28/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

""Period Pieces" is a splendid anthology of songs covering a period of more than thirty years in which Peggy Seeger has been active both as a singer / songwriter and campaigner in debating Women's Issues. Peggy reminds us in the title that these are also Men's Issues, so if you are part of a circle or class studying human relationships, here is what these songs will contribute: "I'm Gonna Be an Engineer" (1971) is a witty plea for equality in the workplace. "R.S.I" (1987) reflects the slow pace of change in the workplace during the Thatcher years, though the VDU operator suffering from Repetitive Strain Injury at least has the option to leave her job and take her employer to court. "Nine Month Blues" (1976) lists the hazards of every method of contraception short of total abstention - a realistic backcloth for a discussion on the pros and cons of abortion. "Lullabye for a Very New Baby" (1973) was originally addressed to a baby herself - Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger's daughter, but acts as a reminder to men and women of the pains (and joy!) of being a mum. "Different Tunes" (1988) features Peggy and her daughter Kitty - then a teenager - in a parent and daughter dialogue familiar to all mothers with daughters aged 15. Kitty's identity is often confused with that of her late half sister (Kirsty MacColl). Kitty is endowed with a brilliant voice. Both she and Kirsty have participated in providing the backing for many MacColl / Seeger recordings. Kitty has also joined in live performances of "White Wind" (Ewan & Peggy's anthem against apartheid: 1978) and can be heard in the background on at least three of the CDs that Peggy Seeger has recorded with Irene Scott since Ewan MacColl's death in 1989. Do not allow the campaigning commitment of "I Support the Boycott" (1963) to put you off buying South African fruit. The song is still delivered with verve, as well it might be - it took about 30 years for Harold MacMillan's 'wind of change' to arrive. "Winnie and Sam" (1978) highlights a problem that won't go away: men who batter their women partners. Peggy bases her campaigning songs on careful field work and she reminds us that physical violence towards women is encountered at every level of society - 'Winnie is a lawyer's daughter, Sam's got a Ph.D.' The theme women's apprehension of being subject to violence or rape is extended in "Reclaim The Night" (1979) where the Law is looked to as a mechanism that could put a higher value on women's safety. "B-Side" (1988) is a witty, yet serious attempt to put men in women's shoes - 'Men, watch out! There's dangerous women about! Boys, beware! There's violent females everywhere'. "Carry Greenham Home" (1983) and "Woman on Wheels" (1987) are tributes to the power that women can yield when they unite against evils such as cruise missiles. Greenham Common was reclaimed through Women Power - even the woman in her wheel chair and her disabled colleagues played their part in cutting the fence surrounding the missile base. The tracks on this album encompass many political campaigns. "Missing" (1987) reminds one of the brutality that the Pinochet regime in Chile inflicted on women and children as well as men. "Turncoat" (1994) marks the change in the law that permitted women to become 'priests' within the Church of England. Peggy Seeger hardly misses a women's issue in this collection. "Twenty Years" (1978) attempts an overview of the psychological pressures that nearly all women face, as opposed to the physical demands entertainingly described in "Lady, What Do You Do All Day?" (1978) and the "Housewife's Alphabet" (1976) that appear on other of Peggy Seeger's albums. As a concession to thinking men who are trying to face 'both women's and men's issues', Peggy rounds "Period Pieces" off with a love song entitled "Darling Annie" (1971). The man in the song is rather traditional in his offerings to his darling Annie, but she is able to educate him and he is able to adapt because love binds them together - 'not the vow, not the string, not the golden wedding-ring'. "Period Pieces" is not only musically very varied and satisfying, but reviews an ongoing dialogue in which thinking women and men should want to engage - even if it takes another 30 years before they agree."
Hilarious and biting!
Mr. B. E. Power | 11/09/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Just heard one of her songs on the radio about getting revenge on an insolent smoker by farting--absolutely hilarious! Looked here & realized she sang some other songs I loved-- very witty! Songwriting at its best!"