“Borrowed for a time, the life we share is a sacred rhyme”
On Monday evening, City Winery held a gathering for the viewing of the great Mr. Richie Havens ashes. The event was open to the public and gave fans an opportunity to pay their respects and socialize with some of Richie’s relatives, bandmates, and long time friends.
Two hours into the event people were still waiting on line to sign the memorial book and walk onstage to view Richie’s large collection of jewelry displayed in a beautiful glass and wood case, and his ashes stored in a beautiful black stone pyramid urn. Also displayed on stage were his guitar, decorated stool, a wedding picture, and a large portrait of himself wearing a smile as warm as his soul. At one point in the night, longtime friend and musician extraordinaire John Hammond got on stage to share a few fond memories and gentle words about his friend. On both sides of the stage were large screens showing clips of a documentary about the legendary 1969 Woodstock festival (Richie was the first act to perform).
After viewing, the capacity crowd sat and socialized with other fans, sharing memories of seeing him perform and tales of conversations with him. Whether you knew those in attendance or not, everyone was there for the same reason; Richie’s songs and lyrics held a special spot in everyone’s heart.
Mr. Havens' ashes will be spread later in the summer where the Woodstock festival took place (Max Yasgur’s farm, now Bethel Woods Performing Arts Center). For further Richie Havens information, go to his official website.