It all started in Washington Square...
December 29, 2013 8:23 PM Subscribe
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI (42 comments total)
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The Coen Brothers latest film "Inside Llewyn Davis"
is fictional, but it aims to portray the very specific time and place of the Greenwich Village Folk scene in the early 60's. Reviewers have already noted the similarities
between the movies characters and some real life counterparts, starting with Llewyn Davis himself and legendary folk singer Dave Van Ronk
Never heard of him? Well, while he never achieved the fame of those he played and hung out with (including Bob Dylan and Joni Mitchell), he was loved by those who worked with him and he performed regularly until his death in 2002 from colon cancer. His biography "The Mayor of MacDougal Street"
(cowritten by musician Elijah Wald) was published shortly after his death and is a wonderfully entertaining portrait of his musical career with emphasis on the Greenwich Village years. If the movie leaves you wanting to know more and you can't track down the book, Wald has contributed a lengthy essay
over at the movie's website that encapsulates the book nicely.
If you'd like a listen to Van Ronk, here he is singing "Hang Me Oh Hang Me"
and "Cocaine Blues"
from his 1963 album "Folksinger".
In 1997, he performed "St James Infirmary"
at a concert commemorating the 1952 "Anthology of American Folk Music" collection which inspired many folk singers (including Van Ronk) at the time of its release.