"Community through song" is the unofficial theme of "Around the Campfire," Peter, Paul & Mary's new double CD set for release April 28.
Featuring 25 classic folk songs (four of which have never been recorded by the trio), "Around the Campfire" celebrates the timeless musical message of Peter, Paul & Mary, who celebrate their 38th year of performing together this year.
"The inspiration for this album springs from the legacy of folk music sung by friends and family sitting around a campfire, at home in the living room, or in a school, church or synagogue," said Peter.
"Four generations come to our concerts and sing these songs together. Since Peter, Paul and Mary are all parents and now Mary is a grandparent, you can imagine how meaningful it is to us that folk music continues to bring people together. We know that songs like `This Land Is Your Land' and `Where Have All the Flowers Gone?' will endure for decades to come."
Peter, Paul & Mary are joined on the record by the New York City Labor Chorus as well as children from the Little Red School House, P.S. 6, P.S. 116, Mustard Seed School and The Renaissance School.
These singers accompany the trio on the four newly recorded tracks "Down By The Riverside (Study War No More)," "Kumbaya," "Michael Row Your Boat Ashore" and "Goodnight, Irene."
While it's been almost four decades since Peter, Paul & Mary combined talents and made their debut at the Bitter End coffee house in New York City's Greenwich Village, their music and social concerns are as timeless today as they were then.
Their legacy is musical, of course, thanks to such recordings as "Blowin' In the Wind," "If I Had a Hammer," and "Puff, The Magic Dragon," but the trio's commitment to the struggles for social justice also lies at the heart of their story, and that commitment is as strong today as ever.
Their individual and collective efforts focus on such issues as gun violence against children, the rights and organizing efforts of strawberry pickers of California, and the Save One Child Fund at Beth Israel's Institute of Neurology and Neurosurgery in New York.
The release of "Around the Campfire" will be accompanied by the trio's annual spring/summer tour which kicks off March 20 in Los Angeles. In addition, a nationwide contest involving children's camps from around the country will take place in which the grand prize is a private performance by the trio at the winning camp.
"Singing is both spiritual and agile at the same time," added Mary. "It's a way of touching another human being, but with your voice. And, it doesn't matter how old you get or how young you are, or whether you sing in tune or off key, there's just something special about voices raised together."
A complete list of tracks included on "Around the Campfire" is as follows: "This Land Is Your Land," "Garden Song," "Kisses Sweeter Than Wine," "It's Raining," "Somos El Barco," "If I Had A Hammer," "The River Jordan," "Light One Candle," "Where Have All The Flowers Gone?" "Inside," "The Marvelous Toy," "Right Field," "Kumbaya," "Michael Row Your Boat Ashore," "Down By The Riverside," "Puff, The Magic Dragon," "500 Miles," "Stewball," "Blowin' In The Wind," "We Shall Overcome," "All My Trials," " Weave Me The Sunshine," "Day Is Done," "Leaving On A Jet Plane" and "Goodnight, Irene."