Sunday, November 22, 2015

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Mimi & Richard Farina

Artist:Mimi & Richard Farina
Song:Pack Up Your Sorrows
Album:Pack Up Your Sorrows: Best Of The Vanguard Years

Richard Farina was a big part of New York's Greenwich Village folk music scene in the early 60s. He is best known for his recordings with his wife Mimi Farina. He is somewhat forgotten today because of his premature death. But several of his songs have become folk music standards. He was born Mar. 8, 1937 in Brooklyn, NY. Farina began writing while majoring in English at Cornell University and he became friends with Peter Yarrow later of Peter, Paul and Mary. Of course this led him to Greenwich Village and the folk music scene. Farina met folksinger Carolyn Hester and married her 18 days later. She had a contract with Columbia Records so he became her manager. She went out on tour and he worked on his novel. When Bob Dylan played harmonica on Carolyn's 1961 album Carolyn Hester, Farina and Dylan became pals. This also led to Dylan signing with Columbia. Farina traveled to Europe where he met 17 year old Mimi Baez, younger sister of folk music legend Joan Baez. He divorced Carolyn and married Mimi in 1963. They moved to a cabin in Carmel, CA and Farina started writing songs. They debuted as Mimi & Richard Farina at the 1964 Big Sur Folk Festival and they signed with Vanguard Records. Pack Up Your Sorrows is from their 1964 debut album Celebrations For a Grey Day. The song has been covered by many artists, most notably Judy Collins. The duo recorded three albums. Farina was producing an album for Joan Baez. And he released his novel Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me. At a party for Mimi's 21st birthday, Farina saw a guest with a motorcycle. They went out for a ride at high speed and the driver lost control and the bike flipped. Richard Farina died on Apr. 30, 1966 at age 29. It was a big loss to the folk music community. This comp is a good sampling of Mimi & Richard Farina's recordings. Mimi moved to San Francisco and continued to perform usually with her sister Joan. She died in 2001. Here's Mimi & Richard Farina performing Pack Up Your Sorrows with Pete Seeger on his TV series Rainbow Quest 1965.

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