Happy Birthday to Musician, Activist, + 2019 Grammy Nom Joan Baez

Musical icon and folk legend Joan Baez turns 78 today. The activist has quite the resume in her 60 years of performing and creating music that sparks social justice and political protest. Usually at 78, retirement is long overdue, but Ms. Baez is still adding accolades to her endless legacy.
Before reaching eminence, Baez was born this day on Staten Island, New York - a New Yorker by blood. She grew up as a Quaker and has always stayed true to their traditions, with her commitment to pacifism and social issues, including civil rights and non-violence.
Baez began writing songs as early as 13, but her professional, musical career truly began at the 1959 Newport Folk Festival. Her first album, Joan Baez, was released in 1960, and to this day she's released over 30 albums.
Audio from 1959's Newport Folk Festival
Her latest album was released in 2018, and it marked her first studio album in a decade, titled Whistle Down the Wind. The new album was in conjunction with her final tour ever, which is set to conclude in May.
Baez' setlist have always been filled with her perfect folk-renditions of famous songs. Her most performed song to date is "Diamonds & Rust" followed closely by Earl Robinson's "Joe Hill."
This folk queen is in her mid 70s, yet she still manages to performed over 20 songs on tour. Peep her most recent setlist below.
Joan Baez
Baez continues to out-due her contemporaries - she's been nominated in the 2019 Grammys for best folk album for Whistle Down the Wind. This will mark her 9th nomination!
While her touring days are nearing an end, the tireless activist will never retire from fighting for justice. This year alone, she spearheaded charities for Camp Fire, AND served as an Ambassador for the Innocence Project to combat wrongful criminal convictions. Did we mention she's an artist too? Yeah, she's truly a powerhouse of a woman.
She recently told People her plans after retiring from the road, and it's perfect:
"After I wrap the tour I plan on just resting, staring out the window. I’ve never just stared out a window! My Buddhist inclinations will have a better chance than they have. I don’t particularly like meditating but I realize how important it is, so I just do it. And I’ll have more time for that. I’m an elder — that’s the polite way to say it — I won’t live forever, and I think that death is a really important part of one’s life. In this culture we don’t study it enough, or get used to the idea, or consider it a beautiful event. I don’t know what I’ll feel like when I’m 90. I mean, I’ll probably be 100 like my mom."
So... What do you hope to have accomplished by 78? Because Baez sets a REALLY high bar.
Happy Birthday, legend!
Head to her website for tour dates and info.


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