Peter Blood and Annie Patterson have played a central role in helping to create a quiet revolution of group singing in the U.S. in recent years. They have spent decades honing their skills as songleaders in schools, camps, churches, conferences, folk song clubs and festivals. Groups in all these settings have treasured their uncanny ability to choose songs that are fun and inspiring, to teach these songs to groups of all ages, and to get them engaged in spirited group singing.
They used this wealth of songleading experience to create a completely unique song collection entitled Rise Up Singing. Their book contains a wonderful mix of 1200 songs from Beatles to Broadway, from spirituals to carols, and from kids songs to songs of peace and justice. A true underground best-seller, the collection has sold over a million copies since its publication in 1988 with a minimum of publicity, promotion or marketing. Pete Seeger (who in Japan would be known as a "Living National Treasure") has said that their songbook is making "a qualitative difference in music in America."
As many schools in America have cut back on their music programs, hundreds of community groups have sprung up getting together regularly for monthly sings using the Blood-Pattersons' songbook. Churches, schools, camps and social change groups use the books to build community, have fun and teach values around peace and a better world. In the decade since it has been published, the songbook has taken on a central role in the folk music community through out North America.
In addition to traveling through out North America, the Blood-Pattersons have taken their songleading to New Zealand, Hawaii and Great Britain. They accompany their songs with guitars, banjo, mandolin, autoharp, African drum and pennywhistle.
ANNIE is a music educator and professional singer. She has performed as a singer-songwriter at coffeehouses, clubs and folk festivals. She has been a jazz vocalist and performed for twenty years with the swing bands "Big Nite Out" and Girls from Mars, performing widely at folk festivals, swing dances, swing camps, weddings and clubs through out the Northeast and is on three swing recordings by these bands. She currently substitutes as a vocalist with the Northampton based swing band, The O-Tones.
Annie is producer and chief vocalist for the series of teaching recordings that accompany the songbook, Rise Up Singing. She plays the acoustic guitar, old-timey banjo, the djimbe and mandolin.
Annie got her BFA in illustration from Carnegie Mellon University, and is an alumni of Moore College of art's teacher certification program. She has worked as an art teacher, graphic artist and retreat leader.
PETER has been leading group singing for over thirty years, accompanying himself on guitar, autoharp, fiddle and the djimbe (West African drum).
Peter developed a number of singalong resources over the years culminating in Rise Up Singing (published in 1988 by Sing Out Publications.) As Sing Out's Publications Director from 1988-92, Peter served as managing editor for four other songbooks and is the editor of Pete Seeger's widely acclaimed autobiography/song collection entitled Where Have All the Flowers Gone.
He has also worked as a religion teacher, social change organizer, health administrator, marriage & family therapist, a retreat and workshop leader and currently is a professor of psychiatric nursing.
PETER & ANNIE are active members of the Religious Society of Friends. They consider their performing and songleading to be a form of music ministry and social activism. Annie and Peter currently live in Amherst, Massachusetts with their teenage son, 2 dogs and 2 cats and attend Mt. Toby Friends Meeting. Their oldest son is in grad school at NYU.
The Blood-Pattersons have been leading singing together since 1981, performing and songleading in a wide variety of settings through out North America, as well as performing extensively in England and New Zealand. They are members of American Federation of Musicians Local 1000, the Traveling Musician's Union.
They are the co-creators of Rise Up Singing: The Group Singing Songbook and are currently working on the creation of a sequel.
Augusta Heritage Festival (Elkins, WV)
Auckland (New Zealand) Folk Festival
Clearwater Hudson River Revival
Islands Folk Festival (British Columbia)
New England Folk Festival (NEFFA)
Teddy Bears Picnic (Children's Festival, Wellington, NZ)
Vancouver Folk Festival
Folk Music Clubs & Societies:
Canal Club Coffeehouse (Tallahassee, FL)
Claremont (CA) Folk Music Center
Corvalis (OR) Folklore Society
Edinburgh Folk Club (Dunedin, NZ)
Folklore Society of Greater Washington
Madison Folk Song Society
Oberlin College Folk Music Society
Palm Beach County Folk Music Society
La Peña Cultural Center (Berkeley)
People's Voice Cafe (New York City)
Portland (OR) Folklore Society
San Diego Folk Heritage Society
Alternatives to Violence Project
Amigos Construction & Community Development Corp
Bucks County Peace Fair (PA)
Central American Sanctuary Alliance (CASA - Miami FL)
Friends for a Nonviolent World (Minneapolis)
Michigan Friends Center (Ann Arbor)
Northwest AIDS Foundation (Seattle)
New Hampshire Peace Action
Peace Center of Delaware County (PA)
Philadelphia Community School
Quaker House (Chicago)
Resource Center for Nonviolence (Santa Cruz CA)
Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center (Boulder CO)
Tallahassee Boys Choir (FL)
Camp Onas (Ottsville PA)
Camp Celo (Burnsville NC)
Farm & Wilderness Camps (Plymouth VT)
Community Concerts (among many others!):
London, Kendal, Reading & Warwick, England
Arcadia, Berkeley, Chico, Palo Alto & Pasadena, CA
Miami, Orlando & St. Petersburg, FL
Auckland, Hamilton, Christchurch & Dunedin, New Zealand
Haddonfield, Atlantic City & Mullica Hill, NJ
Dover & Wilmington, DE
Honolulu & Hilo, Hawaii
Buckingham, Doylestown, Fallsington, Harrisburg & Kennett Square, PA
Atlanta, Santa Fe
Belfast & Portland, ME
Chapel Hill & Boone, NC
Santa Fe, NM
Bainbridge Island & Seattle, WA
Madison & Milwaukee, WI
Kendal at Longwood
Burlington Conference Center, Burlington, NJ
Friends Lake Community, Chelsea, MI
Quaker Center, Ben Lomond, CA
Pendle Hill, Wallingford, PA
Powell House, Old Chatham, NY
Woolman Hill, Deerfield, MA
Public Radio Appearances:
Minnesota Public Radio
Maine Public Radio
WAMC (Albany NY - Hudson Valley Sampler with Wanda Fischer)
WERU (Blue Hill ME)
WFCR (Amherst MA)
WUOM (Ann Arbor)
WXPN (Philadelphia - The Folk Show with Gene Shay)
KUSP (Santa Cruz)
Community Radio in Dunedin, NZ
Conferences & Gatherings:
American Friends Service Committee
(National 75th Anniversary Celebration)
Britain Yearly Meeting 1999 Summer Gathering
Over 25 FGC annual gatherings
Friends Conference on Religion and Psychology
Friends & the Vietnam War Conference
Friends World Committee for Consultation annual meeting (Section of the Americas)
Girl Scouts conferences
Journal of Christian Healing annual conferences
Men & Masculinity Conference
Meeting for Construction (Wanganui Friends Settlement, New Zealand)
New Zealand Yearly Meeting Summer Gathering
Quaker in Pastoral Care & Counseling
Palmetto Friends Gathering (South Carolina)
Pendle Hill 70th Anniversary Celebration
World Gathering of Young Friends
Young Friends of North America
Yearly Meetings of Friends: Iowa (Conserv.) YM, Illinois YM. Lake Erie YM, New England YM, New York YM, Pacific YM, Philadelphia YM.
Arthur Morgan School (Burnsville, NC)
Brooklyn Friends School
Carolina Friends School (Durham, NC)
Chicago Montessori School
The Common School (Amherst MA)
The Community School (Adelphia MD)
Community School of Philadelphia
Friends Select School (Philadelphia)
The George School (Newtown, PA)
Haverford Friends School
Honolulu Montessori School
Horizon School (Canterbury, NH)
Media-Providence Friends School
The Meeting School (Rindge, NH)
Moses Brown Friends School (Providence, RI
New East Ward Elementary Sch (Downingtown, PA)
Oakwood Friends School (Poughkeepsie NY)
Olney Friends School (Barnesville, OH)
Princeton (NJ) Friends School
The School in Rose Valley
Stratford Friends School (Del. Co., PA)
Toddy Pond School (Belfast, ME)
Wilmington (DE) Friends School
UPCOMING EVENTS & WORKSHOPS with Annie & PeterFriday, May 17th - Wakefield MA
. Singalong Concert 7:30 pm, celebrating bicentennial of Wakefield Unitarian-Universalist Church
. For more info contact Rev. Maddie Sifantus
Tuesday, 21 May - Copenhagen Denmark
. Folk concert 20.30 (8:30 pm) at Tjili Pop
cafe, Rantzausgade 28, phone: 35 35 90 20. June 21-26 - Deerfield MA.
Quaker Spring, being held at Woolman Hill
. Details at www.quakerspring.org
See also website for 2 swing bands Annie sings with:
GIRLS FROM MARS and The O-TONESSat, Feb 15 - Cambridge MA.
West Cambridge Youth Center, 680 Huron Ave, (2nd floor) Fresh Pond. 8pm lessons, 9pm dance. Info Olaf Block
. WFCR interview
with Peter and Annie. Hear us talk about sing-alongs and the origins
of Rise Up Singing with live performances of several favorite songs
promoting efforts to secure a Nobel Peace Prize for legendary folk singer & environmental & peace activist, Pete Seeger. A new edition of Seeger's autobiography (which Peter edited) is coming out this spring.
There are some great quotes from Pete on the power of group singing in the recent New York Times article on community sings around the country, many of which use Rise Up Singing.