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Episode 138

Music That Transcends Time & The Legacy of Connie Converse 

Episode 138
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In the 1950's, an extraordinary young woman lived, worked and performed her original music in New York City. Frustrated by a lack of commercial success, she left Manhattan and in 1974, disappeared entirely, never to be heard from again. In the 2000's, her astounding music was re-discovered and her legacy re-written.

The story of Elizabeth Eaton Converse, known professionally as Connie Converse, is so bewitchingly intriguing that musician and writer Howard Fishman devoted 13 years of his life researching and chronicling it. The product of this nearly decade-and-a-half labor of love is his new book: To Anyone Who Ever Asks: The Life, Music, and Mystery of Connie Converse.

Howard joins us to highlight the deep genius of Connie Converse… possibly our first recorded singer/songwriter and additionally, an artist, poet, writer, classical composer, scholar and activist.

What were the factors that inspired her brilliance and muffled her notoriety within her own time?  Howard poured through Connie’s creations, files, journals, and letters. He spoke to those who knew her best and he carefully studied, analyzed and theorized about Connie’s work, her vision and her trajectory.

Upon first hearing Connie’s voice, Howard found her to be both unique and familiar. He needed to learn more.

Howard’s research brought him to small New England towns, suburban Michigan, Greenwich Village, Prague and beyond to better understand Connie’s path and to piece together the enigmatic life and ultimate mysterious fate of a woman who was so far ahead of her time, we are only now coming to hear and understand her.

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