Commemorations Concert tour Joe Hill songs

Joe Hill on Labor Day

This weekend is looking to be a busy one for Joe Hill centennial events.

We kick off with a commemoration in Salt Lake City, at the site of the execution:

9/5/2015 Concert: The Joe Hill Organizing Committee hosts a day-long celebration of Joe Hill’s life and work Saturday, Sept. 5, at Sugarhouse Park (which stands on the site of the prison where Joe Hill was held and executed) in Salt Lake City, Utah.  Noon to 8 p.m. Judy Collins, Mark Ross, Anne Feeney, David Rovics, Mischief Brew, Joe Jencks, and many more. Free.

9/6/2015 Exhibition on life and legacy of Joe Hill opens at American Swedish Historical Museum, Philadelphia. A report with photos (on the website) will air Labor Day on WHYY-FM.

through Sept. 7: Exhibit: Joe Hill – martyren från Gävle. Länsmuseet Gävleborg, Gävle, Sweden. The Museum website offers photos of the exhibits alongside an extensive text offered in English and Swedish. The Swedish version has a much richer array of photographs, both from the era and of the exhibit itself.

9/7/2015 Labor Day Concert: Bucky Halker sings labor songs at the historic Pullman site in honor of Labor Day and Joe Hill. Pullman Historical Site (Chicago suburbs), Noon – 2:00 p.m., free.

Joe Hill 100 Roadshow launches in Sweden next Friday!

Bucky Halker’s new album, Anywhere But Utah: Songs of Joe Hill, is being released. Here’s a link to an article about the CD that has appeared in several papers, including one issued in Salt Lake City. We hope to have copies to sell through soon.

The Events page is being continuously updated; in the last week we have added shows throughout the midwest and the south, and we hope to get details up on the West Coast leg of the Roadshow in the next several days.

We Never Forget! Joe Hill Lives! Don’t Mourn, Organize!

Commemorations Concert tour

Giant Show in Salt Lake City; Roadshow hits Sweden

joe-hill-who-is-singing-300x3009/5/2015 Concert: The Joe Hill Organizing Committee hosts a day-long celebration of Joe Hill’s life and work Saturday, Sept. 5, at Sugarhouse Park (which stands on the site of the prison where Joe Hill was held and executed) in Salt Lake City, Utah.  Noon to 8 p.m. Judy Collins, Mark Ross, Anne Feeney, David Rovics, Mischief Brew, Joe Jencks, and many more. Free.

9/12/2015 Concert: The Joe Hill Roadshow hits Pittsburgh. Anne Feeney, Mike Stout, and more. Saturday, Sept. 12, 7:00 p.m. The Pump House  (location of the Historic Battle of Homestead), 880 E. Waterfront Dr., Munhall Pennsylvania

Joe Hill 100 Roadshow in Sweden!
Anne Feeney and Jan Hammarlund on tour, singing the songs of Joe Hill in English and Swedish.

Friday 9/11/2015 – Sunday 10/13/2015. Vaensterdagarna, Malmo

Sunday 9/13/2015, 8:00 p.m. Jonskoping

Tuesday 9/15/2015 7:00 p.m. Tellus, Misommarkransen.

Wednesday, 9/23/2015 8:00 p.m. FolkKulturCentrum

Saturday, 9/26/2015 8:00 p.m. Kultarnatten, Norrkoping

Commemorations Concert tour

Joe Hill Roadshow travels East Coast

The Joe Hill Roadshow’s East Coast leg has had successful stops in Baltimore, Philadelphia, Washington DC, and Ithaca, with concerts resuming Wednesday in New York City, Schenectady NY, Springfield MA, Barre VT, and Cambridge MA.

John Braxton, Charlie King, Terry Leonino, Greg Artzner  and George Mann
John Braxton, Charlie King, Terry Leonino, Greg Artzner and George Mann

Here’s a link to a write-up of the Philadelphia show, which includes some short videos.

For those unable to make it, the closing (August 2) show at Club Passim will be streamed live on their website.  We hope to post details for the (short) Southern leg and the West Coast leg soon…

Philadelphia Joe Hill Show

Commemorations Concert tour

East Coast leg of Joe Hill Roadshow

roadshow.small7/23 – 8/2/2015 Joe Hill Roadshow, East Coast leg begins in Washington, D.C. and ends in Cambridge, Mass.

Thursday, July 23, Washington, DC:  Magpie, Charlie King, DC Labor Chorus and George Mann in concert. Washington Ethical Society, 7750 16th St NW, 7:30 pm. $10-$15, no one turned away for lack of funds.

Friday, July 24, Baltimore:  Magpie, Charlie King and George Mann in concert. First Unitarian Church, 514 N Charles St., 7:30 pm. $15, $10 students and seniors, no one turned away for lack of funds. Advance tickets: 410.685.2330

Saturday, July 25, Philadelphia:  Magpie, Charlie King and George Mann in concert. University Lutheran Church, 3637 Chestnut St., 7:30 p.m. Sliding Scale, $10 – $30, children $5. Sponsored by Crossroads Concerts; co-sponsored by Swedish-American Museum and IWW Hungarian Literature Fund.

Sunday, July 26, Ithaca, NY:  Magpie, The Burns Sisters and George Mann in concert. The Space at Greenstar, 700 W Buffalo St., 7:00 pm. $15, no one turned away for lack of funds. Benefit for “Fight for $15”

Wednesday, July 29, New York City:  Magpie, Charlie King, George Mann and New York City Labor Chorus in concert. Local 1199 Union MLK Auditorium, 310 West 43rd Street, New York, 7:30 pm, $10-$15, no one turned away for lack of funds.

Thursday, July 30, Schenectady, NY: Charlie King, Magpie, Joe Jencks, and George Mann onstage in the underground theater. Eighth Step at Proctors, 432 State Street, Schenectady, 7:00 pm

Friday, July 31, Barre, VT: Magpie, Charlie King and George Mann (with special guests Anything Goes) in concert. Old Socialist Labor Hall, 46 Granite Street, 7:30 pm, tickets $15, seniors and students $12, no one turned away!

Saturday, August 1, Springfield, MA: Magpie, Charlie King and George Mann in concert. Bing Art Center, 718 Sumner Ave., 8:00 pm. $15, students and seniors $10, none turned away for lack of funds.

Sunday, August 2, Cambridge, MA: Magpie, Charlie King and George Mann (with special guest Evan Greer) wrap up the Northeast leg with a concert at this venerable, historic folk music venue. Club Passim, 47 Palmer Street, Cambridge, MA 8:00 pm. Tickets $20, $18 for members.

Commemorations Concert tour

Joe Hill tributes in Great Barrington & Paris

NE Roadshow.Guthrie

A new edition of Franklin Rosemont’s book on Joe Hill, translated into French by Frédéric Bureau, will be released May 22.
A discussion of the book and performances of Joe Hill’s songs in French and English by Fred Alpi and several others will be held June 6 at the CNT offices, 33 rue des Vignoles, 75020 Paris, France.
Commemorations Concert tour

Joe Hill Concert opens LaborFest, San Francisco

June 2015: John McCutcheon celebrates the release of his new album of Joe Hill’s music, Joe Hill’s Last Will, with a series of concerts in California (and one show in Virginia).

David Rovics will headline a Joe Hill Commemoration Concert opening LaborFest 2015 July 5 at ILWU Local 34 Hall in San Francisco.  On July 5, 1934,  two longshore strike supporters  were gunned down by police, igniting the 1934 San Francisco general strike.  LaborFest is an annual working class cultural, music and film festival.

Last week’s Wall of Power Radio Hour includes a segment on the Joe Hill Roadshow, with live performances and interviews with Bucky Halker, Jan Hammerlund, Professor Peter Rachleff, and a rousing tune by the Twin Cities Labor Chorus. Minnesotans can stream it at (the site requires listeners to verify that they are listening from Minnesota).

Commemorations Concert tour

Joe Hill Roadshow video

JoeHill.TV has posted a 50-minute video of excerpts from the Joe Hill Roadshow: null

The site also hosts an interview with U. Utah Phillips, the Bo Widerberg film “The Ballad of Joe Hill” (the film is mostly in English with some Swedish), and an eclectic range of other material include documentaries, interviews, concerts, etc.

Commemorations Concert tour

Joe Hill Roadshow Midwest Tour a Success

The Midwest leg of the Joe Hill Roadshow has finished, drawing sell-out crowds at some venues and bringing Joe Hill’s music to several cities. Lil’ Rev, Bucky Halker and JP Wright did most of the shows, joined by Anne Feeney and Jan Hammarlund on many stops and a veritable host of musicians for the Madison show. Photos from several shows are in the gallery.

Bucky Halker & Little Rev in St Paul
Bucky Halker & Little Rev in St Paul

A preview of Bucky Halker’s forthcoming CD (which will be released in June) of Joe Hill’s songs was available at every stop — we will add it to the JoeHill100 store as soon as it’s available.

David Rovics’ Joe Hill European tour concludes with three shows in Switzerland this weekend.

John McCutcheon kicks off a tour celebrating the release of his new album of Joe’s songs, Joe Hill’s Last Will, June 5. Several shows are scheduled in California, with a June 19 show in Virginia.  There’s a couple more dates set for late November in Madison, Wisconsin, and Maryland.

We hope to release dates for the Southern and East Coast legs of the Joe Hill roadshow soon. The Joe Hill centenary t-shirts are available in our store (we’ll get photos up as soon as we can get someone to model them in decent lighting – there are some shots in the photo gallery, but they hardly do the design justice) in sizes ranging from small to triple XL. Coming soon are listings for songbooks, buttons, and more.

Commemorations Concert tour

John McCutcheon: Joe Hill’s Last Will

Folksinger John McCutcheon has released a new album, Joe Hill’s Last Will, marking the centenary of his execution. His blog describes the album this way:

Joe Hill was a songwriter for the Industrial Workers of the World, the Wobblies, back in the early 20th century. He was the ultimate utilitarian songwriter, composing pieces to be used at meetings and picket lines and rallies. He wrote songs to be sung and to be used. To be useful.

His songs “The Preacher & the Slave” and “Casey Jones, the Union Scab” are what some people know of his work. But veteran folk musician and longtime labor activist, John McCutcheon, has released an album bringing Joe Hill’s music to a whole new audience. With fresh arrangements, stunning musicianship, and released on a palette that makes these songs feel as though they were written today rather than a century ago, there is a life and vitality that is both rare and refreshing.

Joe Hill was executed by a Utah firing squad at dawn, November 19, 1915. This album is being released in honor of the centenary of Hill’s death.

Songs on the album: Casey Jones, It’s a Long Way Down to the Soup Line, The Tramp, Joe Hill’s Last Will, Mr. Block, What We Want, The Preacher & the Slave, Overalls & Snuff/The Connaughtman’s Rambles, The Wooden Shoe/Ta Ra Ra Boom De Ay, The Rebel Girl, Stung Right, Where the Fraser River Flows, There Is Power in a Union

Tour dates:

Saturday, June 6, Sutter Creek Theater, 44 Main St., Sutter Creek CA

Sunday, June 7, Grass Valley Center for the Arts 314 W Main St., Grass Valley CA

Monday, June 8, Sierra Nevada Brewing Company 1075 E 20th St., Chico CA

Wednesday, June 10,  Fresno CA

Thursday, June 11, Church of the Brethren, 2301 Woodland Ave., Modesto CA

Friday, Jun 12, St. James Episcopal Church, 37051 Cabrillo Terrace, Fremont CA

Saturday, June 13,  Freight & Salvage, 2020 Addison, Berkeley CA

Sunday, June 14, Sebastiani Theater, 476 First St. East, Sonoma CA

Friday, June 19, Singleton Center for Performing Arts, 922 Park Ave., Richmond, Virginia

Commemorations Concert tour

Joe Hill Road Show: Midwestern Leg

roadshow.smallJoe Hill Road Show. Concerts in Chicago, Madison, Milwaukee, Oshkosh, St. Paul, and more.

Friday, May 1: Chicago: HideOut, 1354 W Wabansia Ave.

Sunday, May 3: Batavia, IL: Fox Valley Folk Society

Tuesday, May 5: Sheboygan WI: Paradigm Café, 1202 N 8th St.

Wednesday, May 6: Madison, WI: Barrymore Theater, 2090 Atwood Ave.

Thursday, May 7: Green Bay, WI: Luna Café, 330 Main Ave.

Friday, May 8: Milwaukee, WI: Anodyne Café, 224 W Bruce St.

Saturday, May 9:  Oshkosh, WI: New Moon Café, 401 N Main St.

Sunday, May 10: St. Paul, MN: East Side Freedom Library, 1105 Greenbrier St.


Please check tour listings for additional special guests:

Anne Feeney is the best labor singer in North America,” according to the late great Utah Phillips. This Pittsburgh-based activist has a dozen critically acclaimed recordings embodying her bottomless songbag, as well as her own inspiring and often hilarious original songs.  Audiences love Anne’s humor, hope, and her high-energy performances. Celebrating 45 years of comforting the afflicted, and afflicting the comfortable.

Since emerging on the new folk scene in Sweden in 1972, Jan Hammarlund’s songs of struggle, liberation and love have garnered him the admiration of acoustic music fans and activists all over Scandinavia. In addition to his popular original compositions, Jan has translated the songs of Violeta Parra, Bertolt Brecht, Malvina Reynolds and various French cabaret-style composers. Jan Hammarlund is more than a musical storyteller, he is a singing historian.

Fusing folk, blues, honky-tonk country, straight ahead rock, and jazz, Bucky Halker has recorded a dozen albums, including his double-CD, The Ghost of Woody Guthrie (2012), an original music tribute to Guthrie, and Welcome to Labor Land (2007), his renditions of labor protest songs from Illinois. Bucky, a Ph.D. in labor history, is the author of For Democracy, Workers, and God: Labor Song-Poems and Labor Protest, 1865-1895 and the producer-scholar for the Folksongs of Illinois CD series. He is currently recording a CD of Joe Hill’s songs to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Hill’s execution in 1915. Rick Kogan recently referred to Bucky as a “missionary, spreading the words and redefining folk music in new and vital and exciting ways.”  Chicago Tribune (March 23, 2014)

Lil Rev is an award-winning storyteller, entertainer and rooted multi-instrumentalist. A former teacher, bus driver and self-proclaimed music historian, he has been called “A Wisconsin Treasure” by the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee Folk Center and Pete Seeger said, “Listen to this! Lil Rev is great!” Lil Rev tours North American teaching ukulele clinics, performing his one-man shows of Jewish Cultural Heritage and concertizing at traditional arts venues from coast to coast. 

JP Wright is a singing Locomotive Engineer and union activist. His music centers around his work at the railroad as well as his involvement in the Rank and File reform labor movement. His music is influenced by folk and traditional Kentucky mountain music. He is currently Co-Chair of Railroad Workers United and a delegate for the Kentucky IWW General Membership Branch.