Hear the memoir that served as inspiration for a major motion picture written and directed by the Coen brothers.
Dave Van Ronk was one of the founding figures of the 1960s folk revival, but he was far more than that. A pioneer of modern acoustic blues, a fine songwriter and arranger, a powerful singer, and one of the most influential guitarists of the ’60s, he was also a marvelous storyteller, a peerless musical historian, and one of the most quotable figures on the Village scene.
The Mayor of MacDougal Street is a firsthand account by a major player in the social and musical history of the ’50s and ’60s. It features encounters with young stars-to-be like Bob Dylan, Tom Paxton, Phil Ochs, and Joni Mitchell, as well as older luminaries like the Reverend Gary Davis, Mississippi John Hurt, and Odetta. Colorful, hilarious, and engaging, The Mayor of MacDougal Street is a feast for anyone interested in the music, politics, and spirit of a revolutionary period in American culture.
“In Greenwich Village, Van Ronk was king of the street, he reigned supreme.” (Bob Dylan)
“A wise and very funny book.” (New Yorker)
“A hulking raconteur and iconoclast, [Van Ronk] fondly captures the spirit of the times.” (Q)
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conversational and enjoyable memoir
Conversational style, van ronk has a refreshing philosophical stance on his past even things others may be bitter about. He is able to laugh at himself while also puttImg his point of view across. His development as a musician is fascinating as are the stories about Dylan, Phil Ochs, Rev Gary Davis and Mississippi John hurt. Well narrated and for fans of inside llewyn Davis it is interesting to see what the Coens pulled from it.
- Philip A.