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Pete Seeger: A Song And A Stone

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United States of America
Engaging glimpses of one of the greatest Americans of the 20th Century in his personal and historical context in this film by Robert Elfstrom.
Physical formats available:
Digital formats available:
Quicktime (Pro Res)
Audio & visual:
Sound, Color

The footage here, dating from 1972,takes you to concerts, antiwar demonstrations, conversations with friends and family members, his famous Clearwater Sloop The film highlights such events as Seeger's anti-Vietnam war stance, his battle to clean up the Hudson with the Clearwater sloop, a rare appearance on television on the Johnny Cash Show, his remembrances of Woody Guthrie and family gatherings especially with wife Toshi and with his father, the renowned musicologist Charles Seeger.

Director: Robert Elfstrom
EXT shot of plane wing through window. Above clouds at high altitude.
CU shot of Pete Seeger asleep by plane window.
EXT shot of wing through plane window. Plane landing and taxiing. ZI to aileron.
FS to ZO of Seeger and companion walking through a building.
INT shot of studio. Seeger in discussion, talking about racism in America.
Seeger partially performs Walking Down Death Row with guitar. Music cuts into INT shot of prison corridor. Camera dollies into prison guard. B-roll of prisoners in common area.
FS to ZI of Seeger performing in studio. More b-roll of prisoners in common area and in their cells.
MS of Seeger concluding performance and sitting to a heated debate about America’s penal system and the Vietnam war.
MS ZI to Seeger seated on a bed talking to camera. He awkwardly admits that he’s not the “kind of person who really knows how to argue.”
Row of national flags in the wind. Title card and credits.
F/I to applause from audience at a concert. Shot from stage, woman introduces Seeger before he performs.
Music cuts into b-roll of Seeger chopping wood with an axe. CU of Seeger performing.
MS EXT shot of Seeger talking about touring and singing lullabies to his daughter, Tinya. Plane flies overhead. CU of Seeger singing. ZO to MS.
MS of Seeger performing.
Music cuts into shot of Seeger reclining in studio.
B-roll of Seeger and Toshi Seeger in a rowing boat. MS of them smiling and embracing in studio. CU of Seeger smiling, ZO of him asleep on a plane to CU profile shot of him looking out of the plane window.
FS of television screening The Johnny Cash Show, cutting back to Seeger reclining on a plane seat announcing he will be on the show and wondering about what he can sing. Questioning if he’ll be permitted to sing any protest songs.
MS of Cash and Seeger talking and walking around a room, preparing for the show. Shot of them both seated, Seeger playing banjo. Camera pans to another person. Seeger still in shot.
Camera cuts back to Seeger in plane talking about making compromises to appear on television.
MS and CU shots of Cash and Seeger in conversation. Cash defends the choice to have Seeger on his show. They discuss Seeger being incorrectly labeled as a communist and Cash gushes admiration for Seeger.
Cash, Seeger and crew rehearsal in dressing room.
FS of television screening The Johnny Cash Show episode with Seeger.
CU of Cash, crew and Seeger at rehearsal, prior to show.
FS of Cash and Seeger performing in the studio. Broadcasting media.
Shots of Cash, Seeger and crew in rehearsal room. ZI to Seeger.
MS of Charles Seeger (father) being interviewed.
MS of Cash and Seeger being anecdotal — Seeger talking about his father, Charles.
EXT FS of Seeger family meeting and greeting one and other. Shots of Charles, Toshi and Pete Seeger with children and Margaret Dickinson.
MS of Cash and Seeger being anecdotal. CU of Seeger talking about his father Charles once more.
EXT b-roll shots of family. Charles and Pete being anecdotal.
CU profile shot of Seeger lamenting about a past event.
CU ZO of Seeger, seated, singing and playing the banjo.
MS of Toshi Seeger reclining on couch, questioning Seeger. Camera pans to ZI Pete Seeger’s reply.
MS and CU shot of Seeger on stage talking to young audience and playing banjo. CU shots of audience members. Cuts to INT shot of radio studio, Seeger playing banjo with Frederick Douglass Kirkpatrick on guitar.
Arc shot to CU of Seeger performing with guitar. Camera cuts to CU of Frederick Douglass Kirkpatrick on guitar and back to Seeger’s performance. Audience applauds.
MS of Seeger and Kirkpatrick performing in radio studio and being introduced by host. Toshi Seeger in shot.
CU of Seeger talking into microphone. Camera ZO.
MCU INT shot of Seeger talking in profile. Camera cuts to EXT profile shot of Seeger telling a parable.
B-roll of boats on water. CU of Seeger addressing and singing to the working crew of a large boat. B-roll of Seeger and crew raising American flag as crew member climbs Jacob’s ladder.
INT CU to MS of Seeger, seated, being anecdotal. B-roll of people working on small sailing boats, docked.
CU of Seeger playing guitar and singing and b-roll of people on deck inc. Seeger playing a banjo. B-roll of Seeger helping with the sail and sunset.
CU of Seeger expressing a symbolic view on sailing.
Seeger sings and plays banjo to young children.
B-roll of a grassy meadow in the breeze to the soundtrack of Seeger’s “God Bless the Grass”. Camera pans to an old, torn billboard advertisement. B-roll of children sitting on grass, playing.
CU profile shot of Seeger singing ZO audience in shot. B-roll of Statue of Liberty, traditional military parade and a police line. B-roll of demonstrations and marches against the Vietnam War.
CU to MS of Seeger performing to an audience of young adults. CU and HA shots of audience. Performance concludes, Seeger talks to audience.
CU to ZO of Seeger in studio with Lester Flat performing ‘Go To Sleep, You Weary Hobo’. Pan down to Flat singing playing guitar. Cut to shot of other musicians and CU of Flat singing harmony into microphone.
CU of Seeger singing. ZO and pan to other musicians (inc. Don McLean) joining in chorus. Toshi Seeger joins in, smiling, and passes a magnum of wine. OH shot of people handing around the bottle, spilling content as they attempt to drink through the long neck.
ZI to CU of Don McLean performing “Circus Song”.
Rear view EXT MS of Seeger playing a recorder as a dog barks (audio) ZO to FS and landscape. Profile shot of Seeger who turns, laughs and crouches and continues to play as a dog approaches him.
EXT MS of Seeger by a jeep. MS of Seeger talking about pledging people to think about “the military situation”.
CU profile shot of Seeger performing “Waist Deep in the Big Muddy”. Slow ZO to MS and audience applause. Seeger performs “Full Fathom Five” as camera fades to b-roll of cemetary, leaf floating on water and military graves.
B-roll of traditional parade with audio of Seeger reciting “Goliath”. Truck carries a large model of a bald eagle.
EXT MS of Seeger improvised singing. CU of Seeger to a performance of “Turn, Turn. Turn”.
EXT b-roll of woodland audio of Seeger’s “I Come And Stand At Every Door”. Shots of young boy at an opening door and running through woodland.
B-roll of boy approaching on bike (with makeshift military props) to audio of “King Henry”. B-roll of busy city street, young scouts walking roadside and soldiers walking through woodland.
Audio bridges into MS of Seeger on stage, concluding a performance to audience applause. Rear MS of him performing “From Way Up Here” as camera cuts to HA b-roll of children playing on a beach and CU b-roll of young children. B-roll of funeral and mourners.
CU of Seeger performing “Where Have All The Flowers Gone” to b-roll of elderly people in care and soldiers with arms.
B-roll of train driver in cabin. Train approaches platform. Audio of “Last Train To Nurmeberg”. B-roll of view through train window and moving trains.
CU to MS of Seeger performing with banjo. B-roll of people protesting outside of The White House.
B-roll of Seeger walking by grounds of The White House with neck placard and with other protesters.
CU of Seeger performing. CU shots of melancholic audience. Seeger sings “Kumbaya”.
B-roll of protesters in front of The White House with audio of Seeger speaking. B-roll of Seeger with Toshi and Seeger performing in front of protestors.
LA ZI of Seeger performing to WS of audience, in solidarity, raising v-sign.
Performance concludes, MS of Seeger and Toshi seated to audience applause.
CU of Seeger speaking, taking his stone from the banjo case. CU of stone.
End of shotlist
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