NEW YORK (AP) — Richie Havens, who sang and strummed for a sea of people at
Woodstock, has died of a heart attack Monday, his family said in a statement. He
Havens, a folk singer and guitarist, was the first performer at the three-day
1969 Woodstock Festival. He returned to the site during the 40th anniversary in
"Everything in my life, and so many others, is attached to that train," he
said in a 2009 interview with The Associated Press.
Havens was born in Brooklyn. He was known for his crafty guitar work and
cover songs, including his well-received impersonation of Bob Dylan's "Just Like
The singer's website said he had kidney surgery years ago and that he never
recovered enough to perform concerts like he used to.
Havens performed at Bill Clinton's presidential Inauguration in 1993. He has
released more than 25 albums. His last album was 2008's "Nobody Left to
"I really sing songs that move me," he said in an interview with The Denver
Post. "I'm not in show business; I'm in the communications business. That's what
it's about for me."
A public memorial will be planned for a later date.
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