This US folk group was formed in 1949 by artists with a background of traditional music, and comprised Lee Hays (1914, Little Rock, Arkansas, USA, d. 26 August 1981; vocals, guitar), Fred Hellerman (b. 13 May 1927, New York, USA; vocals, guitar), Ronnie Gilbert (b. vocals) and Pete Seeger (b. 3 May 1919, New York City, New York, USA; vocals, guitar, banjo). Previously, Seeger and Hays had been members of the Almanac Singers with Woody Guthrie. Unlike many similar groups of the time, the Weavers were able to attain commercial acceptance and success, without having to compromise their folk heritage. Virtually all their record releases charted, a precedent for a folk group. They have at times been credited with creating the climate for the post-war folk revival. Many songs became standards as a result of the popularity achieved by the group, in particular, Goodnight Irene, which sold one million copies in 1950. Other successful songs were...
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