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Peter Yarrow, Noel Paul Stookey and Mary Travers came together to reclaim folk's potency as a social, cultural and political force. The Trio lived their songs. They sang at the March on Washington where Dr. In , they returned to the middle of the charts again with Yarrow 's "Day Is Done," a surprisingly autumnal work.
They also chalked up another Grammy Award that year for Peter, Paul and Mommy , an album of children's songs that became a mainstay of their catalog, reaching generation after generation of parents and children. During the summer of , Warner Bros. Released that September, the single "Leaving on a Jet Plane" peaked at number one, the trio's only chart-topping single, and also pulled Album back onto the list of top-selling LPs.
It was inevitable that there would be a split at some point, given their different, evolving lives. Mary Travers was now the mother of two daughters, Yarrow was newly married, and Stookey , in addition to wanting to work with new and different musical sounds, had developed a serious belief in Christianity.
Amid a flurry of sales behind "Leaving on a Jet Plane," and the release in the spring of Ten Years Together: The Best of Peter, Paul and Mary which rose to number 15 , the trio completed their concert obligations and announced in the fall of that they were taking a year's sabbatical from Peter, Paul and Mary. Mary Travers continued working in a folk-pop vein for a time, while Peter Yarrow wrote topical songs dealing with the politics of the time, and Paul Stookey proved the most adventurous of the three musically, exploring harder rock sounds as well as jazz, and delving into Christian-oriented music.
They moved around each other's orbits, appearing on each other's albums occasionally and even reuniting on behalf of George McGovern 's presidential campaign, but it was clear by the late '70s that none of them had enough of an audience on his own to sustain a full-time performing career. Travers moved from Warner Bros. This was all a long way from their s heyday, and a reunion album also proved a false start, selling more poorly than any LP in their history. The concerts surrounding that album, however, marked the beginning of a gradual re-forming of the trio.
Travers , a single mother with two daughters and a menagerie of pets to look after, was nonetheless concerned with the antinuclear movement, with which Yarrow had long been involved. Stookey rejoined after some hesitation, and by the early '80s Peter, Paul and Mary were a functioning trio again, playing concerts occasionally and trying to record, including their annual Christmas concerts at Carnegie Hall in New York.
Without skipping a beat, they picked up from their early-'60s beginnings, only the civil rights anthems had new meaning in an era when the laws protecting those rights were under attack by the Reagan administration.
And they were interspersed with songs about the political strife in El Salvador and the nuclear arms race. As long as they included "Puff The Magic Dragon " in their repertoire, however, the trio was still largely immune from attack by the right. The real difficulty was getting their work heard by a larger public in the music environment of the s. By that late date, none of the major labels were interested in the work of folk groups of their vintage so they did it themselves, initially releasing the live reunion album Such Is Love on their own Peter, Paul and Mary label.
Peter, Paul & Mary
They were associated with Gold Castle Records, a promising independent label, for much of the late '80s, until its failure, but they did get to record a handful of LPs that they ended up owning outright. They retained good relations with Warner Bros. Finally, in , some 30 years after the trio signed with them, Warner Bros. Records became interested in doing a follow-up to Peter, Paul and Mommy , which had been a perennially good seller in its catalog.
After the s, the group had been moving into the role of elder statesmen of the folk community -- Mary Travers even hosted a television special that brought together the entire present and former membership of the Kingston Trio on-stage -- and this status was borne out in with the Lifelines album. The latter, an all-star concept album featuring the trio performing with colleagues, older and younger -- including ex- Weaver Ronnie Gilbert and blues legend B.
King -- was sufficiently successful to generate a concert follow-up, Lifelines Live , the following year.
In , they carried the same all-star singalong concept a step further, in a slightly different direction, with Around the Campfire , and in , Warner Bros. In , Travers was diagnosed with leukemia and eventually underwent a bone-marrow transplant, but the trio resumed performing by the following year.
Successive tours followed during the s until news appeared in that Travers ' leukemia had re-emerged. She began chemotherapy, but died of complications on September 16th of that year. Yarrow and Stookey , as a tribute to Travers , turned next to a project the trio had been discussing before her death -- adding fresh symphonic orchestrations to live tracks of the group from several s and s concerts.
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