Growing up we had music in the house. One of the groups that was played over and over again was “Peter, Paul, and Mary”.
The stories they told with their songs would transport me.
Sometimes when reading a good Heinlein story I’d hear the trio playing the sound track to his story.
I had the privilege of seeing them in person. They had just gotten back together and were giving concerts in small venues. In this case it was a small hall in Lansing, MI. They put on a great performance and afterwards my friends and I were just hanging out talking about how good it was.
And the three of them came out to just talk with the dozen or so people that were still in the hall. I’m not one to be at a loss for words but here were three of my “heroes” within easy speaking distance, just talking. I went mute. I had no idea what to say or do. I just stared.
Paul turned to me and said something like “Are you ok? Is there anything you need?” and I stumbled out something about how I had grown up listening to them and how much of an honor it was to hear them in person.
Well about a year later there was a big event on campus. Know that there were about 65,000 students at MSU that year. The headliners for the event was Peter, Paul, and Mary.
It was a cold rainy day and we started to gather hours before they were set to perform. I’d guess there were about 5,000 to 10,000 people standing in the rain in a big field facing the stage waiting for the concert to begin.
The anointed hour arrived and Paul steps out on stage with Peter and announces. “We are so sorry, Mary has laryngitis and can’t perform.” They were very apologetic but there wasn’t going to be any concert.
And then the chant started “Mary. Mary. Mary.” growing louder and louder. The two of them left the stage and the chant continued. They came back out and there was silence and they announced again that there was going to be no concert.
The chant started up again. They were looking very concerned. Suddenly the blond hair of Mary is seen coming on to stage.
Not a single person had left at that point.
When we saw Mary a huge cheer rose up over the field. Applause echoed from the buildings 100s of yards away. Mary waved to the crowd and the clapping when on and on.
The three of them raised their hands together and took a bow, and then another. The cheering and applause never dimmed.
Then they turned and walked of the stage and those students, many of whom were not yet born when they played their first gig, turned and left the field.
This is a song from PP&M which is a theme song for me and my lady.