Thursday, April 27, 2023

Harry Belafonte 1927-2023

One of my earliest memories regarding recorded sound was of my father playing a reel-to-reel tape called "Belafonte At Carnegie Hall", recorded in 1959. Back in those days record companies would release popular albums on reel tape with the LP's cover printed on the box. I was about five-years-old when I discovered the magic of the art of Harry Belafonte. To this day, I consider that record to be the greatest Live album ever recorded. The RCA Victor engineers sent their finest, state-of-the-art studio equipment into Carnegie to ensure the best quality sound. If you listen to it with the headphones on and close yout eyes, it's like you're sitting in a front row seat sixty-fout years ago. Listen to it online if you think I exaggerate.

It was with indescribable sadness that I learned of the passing of this great and good man on Tuesday morning. He was ninety-six years old. Someone once said, "Old people die - that's their job!" Yeah, yeah, I get it. But still, it's going to be hard for me to adjust to the idea of a world without Harry Belafonte in it.

In spite of his success as a recording artist and actor, Harry's first love in life was being an activist in service of the downtrodden. He was one of the last survivors in the pantheon of great civil rights leaders who moved this country in the only direction it could possibly go seventy years ago. Only Andy Young survives him. He marched with Dr. King in the heat of it, and his career took a decided hit for his efforts. There would be today many more films and records bearing his name had it not been for his dedication to righteousness. His was a noble life, well and bravely lived. Don't hold your breath waiting for the likes of Harry Belafonte to be passing this way anytime soon.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY


Here is a link to purchase the aforementioned Belafonte at Carnegie Hall on CD:

You will not be disappointed.


The Marching Saints (from Belafonte at Carnegie Hall)\

From that same LP, here Harry and the band perform a stunning rendition of the old Jazz standard, "When The Saints Go Marching in". He imagines what the song would have sounded like if it had originated, not in 20th Century New Orleans, but in 19th Century England. This one is worth the price of the ticket!

Sleep well, Harry.


At 7:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"In spite of his success as a recording artist and actor, Harry's first love in life was being an activist in service of the downtrodden."

Sources please.

At 7:46 AM, Blogger rustcoal said...

Floridians may want to invest in pontoon houses, amphicars and coat hangers. When you can no longer afford home owners insurance you'll know climate change is real.

At 10:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fuck off

At 10:49 AM, Blogger rustcoal said...

Biden released his tax returns so you can add tax fraud to your groundless allegations. F.O. is a feeble comeback from peanut brains.

At 3:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

rustcoal's leadership

At 7:21 PM, Blogger Michael said...

I agree with you on the importance of Harry Belafonte. He was many things to many people. all good. Folks like that do not come by often enough. He inspired. Inspiration leads to education. Education leads to growth. And boy, do we need to grow!

At 9:34 AM, Blogger rustcoal said...

Now that POS governor abott has the latest shooting victims pegged as "illegal", will he pardon the shooter?

At 9:48 AM, Blogger rustcoal said...

DO NOT click on any link provided by "anonymous", they are virus sites.

At 1:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


you dimwit, the shooter is illegal

At 9:36 PM, Blogger rustcoal said...

Ron desantis put a whole new spin on Mickey Mouse politics.

At 10:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


how many grand kids does Joe Biden have?

You dimwit, the shooter is an illegal, nice try though.

At 8:23 AM, Blogger rustcoal said...

My solution to the alleged SS- medicare crisis is soylent green.

At 8:33 AM, Blogger rustcoal said...

In texas they'll let anybody have a gun, even"illegals" with criminal records.

At 10:21 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

rustcoal on major deflection mission cause he's got nothing. Can he prove that n Texas

"they'll LET anybody have a gun, even"illegals" with criminal records"?

At 1:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Braindead Democrat Senator John Fetterman’s Wife: ‘Just, Like, Ignore Him When He’s Speaking’ Great advice for rustcoal posts.

At 12:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Same routine every month: Media report headline jobs numbers are strong. More careful reporters dig into the numbers & see full-time jobs are being lost to part time, real wages are down, & earlier “strong” months are revised down".
Tom Elliott


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