Janeen Mason, illustrator of For Baby (For Bobbie) had a once in a lifetime opportunity when visiting the Jensen Beach Barnes and Nobles. To hear more about the event, listen to an Interview with Janeen on the WQCS Arts Spotlight.
Peter Yarrow, of Peter, Paul and Mary, put on a concert last night at my Barnes and Noble in Jensen Beach, Florida. He’s promoting his latest release “Day is Done”. Lindamae Benevides, their Community Relations Manager is a friend of mine and while he was in the back signing books (all 500 of them), she showed him my latest book, John Denver’s “For Baby (For Bobbie)”, a song that Mary Travers made into an icon. He was surrounded by staff ( B&N even sent in CRMs from other stores to help). He asked Ms. Lin, to bring me back to the signing room. We hugged, the staff took lots of photos. He raved over how I “got” the whole message of the song. We spoke the same language, and then he sat me down across the table from him, went back to signing books and sang “For Baby (For Bobbie)” to me. I thought, It just doesn’t get any better than this! –– Being serenaded by Peter Yarrow. But an hour later when he performed in front of the 300 fans who packed B&N he invited me up to stand next to him with my book and turn the pages so the whole audience could see the illustrations.. All of them, all 300 of them sang the song.
The music of Peter, Paul and Mary called to me as an adolescent and I’m convinced they changed the course of my life. With that in mind, just imagine last night when I got to meet the man who inspired me to “speak his language” so many years ago. Barnes and Noble gave him a copy of my book, I signed it for him, and he said he’s taking it with him to Mary Traver’s celebration of life at Riverside Cathedral in NYC on November 9th to show to all of their friends.
This book has been such a gift to me. I loved John Denver, and a couple of weeks ago when I got to hear the musicians he used to perform with sing “For Baby (For Bobbie)” at the Wheeler Opera House in Aspen, I thought It just doesn’t get any better than THIS! But it does. It keeps getting better. Three hundred people lead by Peter Yarrow sang it together last night! And the thrill of being able to move the universal message of love and acceptance forward – to provide it to the newest generation – this is an opportunity that is taken with great respect and a humble heart.