Peggy Seeger “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” – Subject singing

What an incredible thing – to be the inspiration for ‘The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face‘ – and to hear it sung by it’s author Ewan McColl just the once – and that down a crackly transatlantic phone line in 1957 when Peggy requested a love song to perform on an American tour.   The couple were estranged at the time, Peggy Seeger unwilling to carry on an affair with a married man but the song was, she says, “a hell of a way to woo me back!”

Peggy Seeger has recorded a new version of the song with just a simple piano accompaniment, and she says, reflecting on the changing mood of the song, “Ive had two life partners, one male and one female, and I have three children and 9 grandchildren.  Ive come to realise that the lyrics can be interpreted in so many ways.  Ewan wrote the tune to mimic the heartbeat of someone wildly in love and I used to feel like a soaring bird when I sang this song. Now Im grounded within it and that makes me happy.”

About Jonathan Aird 2720 Articles
Sure, I could climb high in a tree, or go to Skye on my holiday. I could be happy. All I really want is the excitement of first hearing The Byrds, the amazement of decades of Dylan's music, or the thrill of seeing a band like The Long Ryders live. That's not much to ask, is it?
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