Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum to present a SONGS FOR CHANGE
Live Musical Performance with
singer/songwriter and social activist JOSH WHITE, JR. performing
a program of songs by his legendary father, Josh White
Saturday, August 15, 2015 at 4:00 p.m.
in the Henry A. Wallace Center
at the FDR Presidential Library and Home
HYDE PARK, NY — The Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum will present a SONGS FOR CHANGE Live Musical Performance with singer/songwriter and social activist, Josh White, Jr., on Saturday, August 15, 2015 at 4:00 p.m. in the Henry A. Wallace Center. White will perform a program of social protest songs by Josh White (Josh Jr.’s father) that were performed during five command performances at the Roosevelt White House between 1940 and 1945. Free public event; registration required. Call (845) 486-7745 to register.
Josh White, Jr. became a child star in the 1940s performing in concert, radio and on recordings with his legendary father, Josh White, who first pioneered African-American blues, folk, spirituals and songs of social conscience to the white audiences in America and then around the world. In 1940, Josh White’s recordings of social protest were brought to the attention of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt.
During the Roosevelt presidency, as Josh White and the Roosevelts forged a close friendship, he gave five White House command performances, in addition to many performances at their Hyde Park, New York home. He not only was the first African-American man to have a million selling record, but also the first to give a White House command performance and the first artist to sing songs of social protest in the White House. Josh Jr. performed many times at the Hyde Park residence with his father, while interacting with the Roosevelt family.
Eleanor Roosevelt publicly referred to Josh Jr. as her Godson, and upon the passing of the President, she hired his uncle, William White, as her personal assistant at her Hyde Park, New York home.
As a young actor, Josh Jr. starred in 5 Broadway plays and 50 television dramas, and was honored with a TONY Award. He began his solo recording career in 1945, and has since recorded 25 albums, toured the world’s greatest concert stages, and starred in four TV concert specials. Josh Jr. has performed for presidents, prime ministers, the Pope, and for the poorest of the poor on four continents. In 1980, he was named the Voice of the Peace Corps and VISTA. In 1982, he performed and spoke at the Centennial Salute to Franklin Roosevelt at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington. In 1983, he starred in the musical drama based on his father’s life, JOSH: THE MAN & HIS MUSIC.
As the son of Josh White, Josh Jr. is a living link to 20th Century African-American history, its roots music, and the responsibility of being an artist-activist.
This program is free and open to the public. Registration is required. Call (845) 486-7745 to register.
Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum
Designed by Franklin Roosevelt and dedicated on June 30, 1941, the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum is the nation’s first presidential library and the only one used by a sitting president. Every president since FDR has followed his example and established a presidential library administered by the National Archives and Records Administration to preserve and make accessible to the American people the records of their presidencies. The Roosevelt Library’s mission is to foster a deeper understanding of the lives and times of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt and their continuing impact on contemporary life. This work is carried out through the Library’s archives and research room, museum collections and exhibitions, innovative educational programs, and engaging public programming. For more information about the Library or its programs call (800) 337-8474 or visit www.fdrlibrary.marist.edu