September 16, 2009

Rest In Peace Sweet Mary

From the Peter Paul and Mary Website:
"Mary Travers passed away today. After successful recovery from leukemia through a bone marrow/stem cell transplant, Mary succumbed to the side effects of one of the chemotherapy treatments. We all loved her deeply and will miss her beyond words."

Tell Me That You'll Wait for Me

Influenced by the likes of Josh White, the Weavers, Woody Guthrie, Leadbelly, and Pete Seeger, Mary Allin Travers was born on Nov. 9, 1936 in Louisville, Kentucky. She later grew up in Greenwich Village, New York City where she was 'discovered' by manager Albert Grossman who put her together with her future partners Noel Paul Stookey and Peter Yarrow. Mary, who had a very powerful and beautiful voice (till the end) and long, straight blond hair that she became almost as famous for.

PP&M were at the forefront of the great folk revival of the early 1960's. The group had hits with such tunes as: "Puff the Magic Dragon", "If I Had a Hammer", "Lemon Tree" and "Stewball". Their versions of "Blowin' in the Wind" and "Leaving on a Jet Plane" helped make stars of budding songwriters Bob Dylan and John Denver respectively.

Known for their political activism, "Blowin' In the Wind" became civil rights anthem for the band and the world, they would march with Martin Luther King in Selma, Ala.,and perform at the 1963 civil rights March on Washington and at demonstrations protesting the Vietnam War throughout the 60's.

The group disband in the early 70's, but over the years they regrouped several times performing at such events as a 1978 anti-nuclear benefit organized by Peter Yarrow, Live Aid, Amnesty International Benefits, and the 1995 anniversary of the Kent State shootings.

Peter Paul and Mary continued to tour right up until this year. On a personal note, I've had the pleasure of seeing the trio three times. In 1986 when the group performed on their 25th Anniversary tour at the Miami Marine Stadium, performing all their hits as well as their newer material "El Salvador", and "No Easy Walk to Freedom". And then twice at The King Center in Melbourne, Florida in 1998 and 2002.

At the time of that first Melbourne concert in 1998, my wife Jen and I had just opened our folk music venue Kool Beanz. So I thought it appropriate to take Jen to see PP&M for her birthday. I called for tickets a week before the show, and to our great luck a couple had canceled their Front Row/Center seats moments before, so we had the best seats we could have dreamed of! To top it off, our good friend Fred Migliore helped arrange to get us backstage where we met the group, they signed my portrait, and I got to live a life long dream of sharing with Mary Travers.

Rest In Peace Mary.

"Java" John Goldacker
September 16th, 2009

I will for sure play some Peter Paul and Mary music on my show
AN ACOUSTIC RECORD Monday September 21st at 10pm.
Tune In:
WFIT 89.5fm in Melbourne Florida
or On-Line:





September 13, 2009


This Monday, September 14th, I have the pleasure of airing my 3rd interview with legendary Pop Artist PETER MAX. Tune In to WFIT 89.5fm (Public Radio for Brevard) in Melbourne, Florida..or ON-LINE:

Below is the story of our first interview, and how we came to illustrate portraits of one and other. Enjoy (interview excerpts below too)!

A colorful brush with the “Cosmic Artist” of our generation!

by "Java" John April 15th '07

My anticipation kicked in immediately after I'd gotten the word that the legendary pop artist (and personal inspiration in my artistic style), Peter Max would be available for an interview on March 8th, on my on-line radio show The Acoustic Record!

Then things just kept getting better. Several days after the confirmation, I was told I'd be allowed to give up to 20 personally inscribed Peter Max posters to lucky winners tuning into the show.

Interview day came, and Mr. Max was wonderful and witty! After having been in the U.S. for over 50 years, Peter still retained a touch of charming German accent he was born with (born Peter Finkelstein) 69 years ago. During the scheduled 20 minute interview (which we stretched into a fantastic hour) Peter and I chatted about his youth, much of it spent in Shanghai, and how daily, from his family's pagoda, he peered down over a temple fence and would watch monks standing on huge sheets of rice paper with huge six foot paint brushes perform an entrancing paint-dance. What an introduction to the world of art!

We talked of his love of music, and how he can't paint without it, even enlisting a 'DJ' of sorts to play snips of 5000 songs at a time off an IPod for approval by Peter for his collection!

During our chat, Peter kept asking if I was coming to Boca Raton the following Saturday for his Showing at the Wentworth Gallery. I mentioned it's a two & a half drive south of us, so I would try to meet up with him next time he was in Orlando. Then at the end of the interview, he asked again, I said probably not, so he said he would 'visualize me there' and then I'd appear. I told my wife Jennifer this and we looked at each other, and knew we had to go!

The next morning after our chat, Tamara from Peter Max On-Line e-mailed me and said Peter had such a great time on the show, and that he would love to paint a portrait of me! Whew!! More about that later…..

When we got to the Wentworth Gallery in Boca Raton, there was a little bit of a line, but they were (rightly so) letting the folks who bought art, chat and pose for pictures with Mr. Max first. So we waited a while, and when he finally came over to sign my book I asked him if he had visualized a DJ there who would it be...and he smiled, shouted "Java John!" and gave me a big hug. I presented him with a portrait I did of him, which he seemed to genuinely like (he held it up for all to see!), then I asked him if he would sign a copy of it for my son Dylan (who's 9). He looked over, shook Dylan’s hand and asked if he was named after Bob Dylan. Dylan said yes, and then Peter said that had done a very popular poster of Bob in '68, and that he would love to send him a signed one! What a nice guy.

We talked for a few minutes, and then took some pictures while he signed stuff for others. Peter wanted to chat with me, but I told him that the nice folks of Boca were still lining up to buy his art, so he should attend to them, and that we could chat again someday soon.

Late afternoon on Friday (the 13th) of April as I was napping, I heard a knock at the door and a voice shouted “UPS” – I knew what it must be, so I jumped outta bed. Sure enough, the package contained a beautiful piece of mixed media artwork, an Original Peter Max portrait of me! Damn, it does not get much kooler than that! Thank You Peter.

Finally, I’m reminded of when we said our goodbyes in Boca, Peter told me that we should plan 'something special' in the future....well, if that what's you visualize Peter - I'm on it!

The summer after our first interview we were in New York City, and had the pleasure of visiting Peter in his wonderful Manhattan studios. What a rush! To be there with all those wonderful paintings I grew up loving.

Since then I tried my hand at doing a Max-style painting of my niece, and I reworked the portrait I did of Peter in color (which I will present to him next weekend in Orlando).
Meet the Artist Peter Max
Wentworth Gallery
The Mall at Millenia
4200 Conroy Road
Orlando, Florida
Saturday, September 19th, 6-9pm
For details call: #407-903-9055

HINT: If you pick up a copy of his book -
"The Art of Peter Max" at your local book store,
he will sign it and make a little sketch near the signature!!

SOME HIGHLITES from Our First Interview:

peter max interview '06 #1


peter max interview '06 #2


See Peter's art at: