The Bottom Line
Still, hard core folkies and true blue Pete Seeger fans may be a little disappointed.
- "O Mary Don't You Weep"
- "My Oklahoma Home"
- "Pay Me My Money Down"
- "We Shall Overcome"
- The CD, overall, falls a little short of the hype
- Fun experiments with classic Americana, bringing in everything from cajun jams to second-line romps
- A nice introduction for people who are skeptical about traditional music
- Overall, however, it doesn't quite live up to the hype
Guide Review - Bruce Springsteen - We Shall Overcome (The Seeger Sessions)
Since then, his blue collar tunes and protest songs have hinted that Springsteen was trying with all his might to make the shift. With We Shall Overcome, Bruce is finally out of the closet, and it'll be hard for him to stay in the rock & roll pigeonhole from here on out.
That said, there's a curious absence of Pete Seeger's signature work on this album. Sure, Seeger has played all of these songs, and was instrumental in their return to the mainstream during the folk revival of the 60s.
But considering Pete's most marked work is that of a protest songwriter, and given Springsteen's vocal stance on current politics, it's a little surprising that he steered clear (for the most part) of Seeger's most timeless topical songs. Instead, the album plays more like a journey through traditional American folk songs ("Erie Canal," "Shenandoah").
For focusing more on the joy of sharing some historical American folk songs, than the objective of making a polished product, Springsteen deserves some bonus points. For letting the songs evolve into, in some cases a kickline, in others, anything from a cajun jam to a New Orleans second line, we nod our heads approvingly.
But, considering the title of the CD brings to mind Seeger's activist songs, it's disappointing to find a dearth of them in its contents.