Legendary musician Richie Havens has passed away at the age of 72. Havens is known for being the first performer at Woodstock, and playing for three hours. In 2007, he appeared and sang in the movie I’m Not There. I really regret never seeing Havens live or having the chance to photograph him. His powerful singing voice and fancy guitar playing will be missed!
Richie Havens, the folk singer and guitarist who was the first performer at Woodstock, died Monday. He was 72.
Havens died of a heart attack in New Jersey, his family said in a statement. He was born in Brooklyn.
Havens was known for his crafty guitar work and cover songs, including his well-received cover of Bob Dylan’s “Just Like a Woman.”
His performance at the three-day 1969 Woodstock Festival, where headliners included Jimi Hendrix, was a turning point in his career. He was the first act to hit the stage, performing for nearly three hours. His performance of “Freedom” – based from the spiritual “Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child” – became an anthem.