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M.T.A.
by lyricist Jacqueline Steiner, performed by The Kingston Trio
CATCH-UP: Jacqueline Steiner (1924 to 2019) was an American 'folk' singer/songwriter and social activist. Jacqueline Steiner was born in New York City, USA, on September 11th 1924. Born into a Jewish family, she grew up in Greenwich Village and graduated from Vassar College. Although she then attended graduate courses at Radcliffe College, she left before earning her degree. During a time spent in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Steiner began singing with other musicians who would gather at Bess Lomax Hawes' house - these included Sam and Arnold Berman, two brothers from Roxbury. Working with Hawes as her co-writer, she notably provided the lyrics to "M.T.A.", a song composed for a Boston political campaign in 1949 and inspired by a conversation between the Berman brothers. It was later altered slightly by the popular 'folk' group 'The Kingston Trio', and became one of their big hits of 1959. It was said to be about a man stuck on the Boston subway because he could not pay his exit fare, and the 'Trio' version is featured here. Steiner eventually married Arnold Berman, and moved back to New York while he studied physics at Columbia University - they subsequently divorced in 1954 due to the long-distance nature of their relationship. She was herself active in the 'folk' scene in the 1950s and 1960s, singing (as 'Jackie Berman') with Pete Seeger and others on "Hootenanny Tonight!", recorded in 1954 and later released as an album by 'Folkways Records' in 1959. She then married publisher Myron Sharpe, and they honeymooned in the Soviet Union, where she also performed in concert. Their son is the novelist Matthew Sharpe, and they also had a daughter. Steiner continued to work as an editor for his publishing house even after her eventual divorce from Sharpe. While known as 'Jacqueline Sharpe', she released an album of anti-war songs in 1966 entitled "No More War", and prided herself on being a linguist (she demonstrated this in 1991 with her album "Far Afield: Songs of Three Continents"). After moving to Norwalk, Connecticut, in 1980, she joined their branch of the 'National Association for the Advancement of Colored People' ('NAACP', the African American civil rights advocacy group) in 1991, serving as their secretary for several years and finally receiving the "Roy Wilkins Leadership Award" for service to them from the nationwide 'NAACP' in 2010. Jacqueline Steiner died from pneumonia in Norwalk on January 25th 2019, aged 94. http://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/05/obituaries/jacqueline-steiner-dead.html
Sources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jacqueline_Steiner
Posted: 15th March 2019
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† REST IN PEACE †
Hundreds of very talented musicians pass away each year, some without much recognition at all. On "Rest In Peace", I aim to give them a fitting 'send-off', with a decent Tribute. I hope you will join me in marking their passing.....
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