Imagine a young woman, free of makeup, a curtain of black hair, barefoot even in the Massachusetts winter, burnishing 200-year-old ballads in a crammed Cambridge coffeehouse, picking like an old hand at her acoustic guitar. At the launch of the 1960s, this was radical, inverting music on its shiny, hair-sprayed head. Joan Baez landed on Time magazine’s cover, lauded as the Queen of Folk. All at the august age of 21.
Joan Baez will be honored by the Kennedy Center, along with country musician Garth Brooks, dancer-choreographer Debbie Allen, violinist Midori and actor Dick Van Dyke. If anyone deserves it, she does.
Her music has been so much a part of my life.
The Washington Post article from which the top quote is taken is excellent and will bring a tear to many eyes. Here are some of her songs to enjoy.