The music world lost a very special soul today. Richie Havens passed away from a heart attack this morning.
Havens was a very successful singer-songwriter for decades. My first exposure to him was from the Woodstock DVD. He was the first performer at the legendary 1969 music festival, and the story goes that he was only supposed to play 4 songs but the crowd liked him so much that the festival organizers told him to keep playing - until he played every song he knew - as other bands were stuck in traffic:
A statement at his agency's website reads:
From Woodstock to The Isle of Wight to Glastonbury to the Fillmore Auditorium to Royal Albert Hall to Carnegie Hall, Richie played the most legendary music festivals that ever were, and most of the world’s greatest concert venues. But even when performing in a Greenwich Village coffeehouse or a small club or regional theater, he was eternally grateful that people in any number turned up each time to hear him sing. More than anything, he feels incredibly blessed to have met so many of you along the way.