Pete Seeger & the Power of Song

Old Town School Pete Seeger tribute comes to Hammond May 7

HAMMOND IN - The Hammond Public Library, 564 State Street welcomes Chicago’s “official troubadour,” Mark Dvorak for a special concert honoring the legacy of American folk icon, songwriter and activist Pete Seeger. The concert takes place at 2:00 pm.

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The program features Dvorak leading the audience through some of Seeger’s best-known songs, including  “If I Had a Hammer,” “Where Have All the Flowers Gone,” “Turn, Turn, Turn,” and others that have become standard in the American folk repertoire..

Perhaps no single person of the 20th century has done more to preserve, broadcast, and redistribute folk music than Pete Seeger, who was born May 3, 1919. His passion for politics, the environment, and humanity earned him both ardent fans and vocal enemies since he first began performing in the 1930s.

In 1948 Seeger formed the folk singing group, The Weavers, which scored massive hit records. After the Communist witch hunts of the 1950s, Seeger was a major force at the Newport Folk Festivals and became a promoter of upcoming talent. 

His marathon-length concerts included Spanish songs, African-American work songs and spirituals, new protest songs and old folk songs, sometimes with rewritten lyrics. And he got everyone singing along, often in multi-part harmony.

Chicago’s Mark Dvorak has followed in the footsteps of Seeger as a musician, educator and community builder. Dvorak toured for six years with the the group WeaverMania! performing Seeger’s role as singer, storyteller and banjo player. 2016 also marks his thirtieth anniversary as a faculty member at the Old Town School of Folk Music. 

“He’s the real deal,” said Bau Graves, Executive Director of Chicago’s Old Town School. ”Mark has made music his life and livelihood and he’s a top faculty member at the school. His performances are elegant, rich and powerful.”

Dvorak will be joined by the Old Town School Folk Chorus, a ten-member group of Old Town School members and singers who have accompanied him for over twenty concerts since Seeger passed away in January 2014.

“We’ve sung a lot of songs together,” said Dvorak of his loose ensemble. “We think it’s a fitting tribute. You can look up Pete’s biography and listen to his discography, but in his own words he said his goal was to, 'Put a song on people’s lips, instead of just in their ears.’ And that’s what we’ve come to Hammond to do.”

Admission to the concert is free for more information, call the library at 219 931 5100 or visit online at

For more information on Mark Dvorak visit

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