Folk Icon Richie Havens Dies At 72

Folk music icon Richie Havens died this morning in his home from a sudden heart attack, his press representative confirms to He was 72.

Havens first became part of musical history during his impromptu opening performance at the 1969 Woodstock Festival. During his three hour performance at that festival, he did an impromptu version of the traditional “Motherless Child” changing bits of the lyrics and music. The song eventually became known as “Freedom,” one of his most popular songs. Other signature songs included his take on the Beatles’ “Here Comes The Sun” and Bob Dylan’s “Just Like A Woman.” Throughout his career, he put his own spin on well known songs, from the Bee Gees’ “I Started A Joke” to Pink Floyd’s “On The Turning Away.”

Best known for his distinctive intense, rhythmic guitar style and soulful vocals, Havens toured and recorded music for over 40 years before retiring from the road 3 years ago.

A public memorial will be planned for a later date.

Brian Ives,


More From 104.3 WOMC

The Beach Boys Announce Three Michigan Summer ConcertsThe 50 Years of Good Vibrations tour will visits Michigan three times this summer!
Duncan Jones Says 'Goodbye' to Father David Bowie"It’s a weird one for me, I don’t really know how to talk about it or what to say about it - other than the fact that we got a chance to say our goodbyes."

Listen Live