Recently discovered recordings from the Gene Bluestein Archives Cuts from Gene Bluestein Folkways lps (late 50s & early 60s) Cuts from Bluestein Family lps never released on CD Live concert recordings, solo and with the Bluestein Family Gene Bluestein's life was one of those that defies easy categorization. English professor, musician, folkorist, husband, father, social activist he was all of those things, yet all of those neat little boxes put together cannot contain the whole. Bluestein's death at the age of 74, is a source of grief for many, but it also served to remind us of his life and his contributions. He was a beloved English professor at Fresno State, in part because of his inclusion of music in his literature classes, which went against the grain of stratified academe. He also brought an innovative artist-in-residence program to the campus. The use of music sprang from Bluestein's conviction, as his son Evo put it, that 'music and dance and art are inseparable from life.' They certainly were for Bluestein and his family. And it's not possible to separate Gene Bluestein from his family his wife, Ellie, and their children, sons, Joel, Evo and Jemmy and daughter Frayda. All of the children became accomplished musicians, and for years they performed with their father for delighted Fresno audiences in their annual Bluestein Family concerts. The Bluestein family became famous as a sort of headquarters for high-energy involvement with life. The visiting artists stayed there during their semesters in Fresno, and there was a constant stream of friends, family and activists of every stripe, often lending the place an air of chaotic joy. That was Gene Bluestein's environment, the perfect place for a kind and gentle man brimming with passion for justice and life.
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