Joan Baez

Joan Baez

Active - 1966 - 2023  |   Born - Jan 9, 1941   |   Genres - Music, Historical Film, Culture & Society

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Biography by AllMovie

While her contributions to motion pictures have been minimal, American singer/composer Joan Baez is perhaps the best known and most influential contributor to the field of 1960s protest songs. The daughter of a Mexican-born physicist father and a Quaker mother, Joan scored her first public success at age 18, when she was featured at the Newport Festival. Her fame was furthered by the first of several tours with Bob Dylan in 1963. Joan was popular enough in the late 1960s to be cruelly parodied by cartoonist Al Capp, who created a folksinger named Joanie Phoanie who sang for the oppressed while tooling around in a Rolls Royce. This caricature couldn't have been farther from the truth: while many other prominent protest singers succumbed to the trappings of money and fame, Joan remained steadfastly true to her causes. In 1965, she helped create the Institute for Non-Violence in California; a few years later, she willingly made herself persona non grata on network TV by dedicating a performance on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour to her husband David Harris, then in prison for evading the draft. Baez' movie contributions have included her producing chores on the 1982 There but for Fortune (the title was taken from her 1965 song hit), a semi-documentary about the Sandinista revolution in Nicaragua. Joan Baez has appeared as herself in a handful of concert films (1966's Big TNT Show, 1967's Don't Look Back), and was seen as an interviewee in the 1984 Woody Guthrie documentary, Hard Travellin'.

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