17-Year-Old Joan Baez Performs at Famous “Club 47” in Cambridge, MA (1958)

The video above brings you way back (we think) to 1958, when Joan Baez was only 17, to a con­cert she played at the leg­endary Club 47 in Cam­bridge, Mass. While the teenage ingénue broke onto the folk scene, Bob Dylan was still a stu­dent back in Hib­bing, Min­neso­ta. Five years lat­er, Baez intro­duced Dylan to the music world; the two dat­ed for a while; and then, even while going their sep­a­rate ways, they put their stamp on the 60s folk scene – a sto­ry that gets well doc­u­ment­ed in the book, Pos­i­tive­ly 4th Street: The Lives and Times of Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Mimi Baez Fari­na and Richard Fari­na. If you click here, you can watch Baez, now in her prime, per­form a com­plete con­cert in 1965. The show runs 65 min­utes and fea­tures 18 songs.

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Relat­ed Con­tent:

Woody Guthrie’s Fan Let­ter To John Cage and Alan Hov­haness (1947)

Two Leg­ends Togeth­er: A Young Bob Dylan Talks and Plays on The Studs Terkel Pro­gram, 1963

The Alan Lomax Sound Archive Now Online: Fea­tures 17,000 Record­ings

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Comments (11)
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  • Bob says:

    Love­ly! Thanks, what a great voice.

  • My per­fect woman. I can’t imag­ine any­one more beau­ti­ful or with a nicer per­son­al­i­ty. I’ve been in love with her since I was about 17 myself (now 63).

    Hap­py birth­day Joan and many of them. Thanks for every­thing you’ve giv­en the world.

  • liza says:

    Beau­ti­ful clip. Hap­py birth­day Joan.

    I don’t think that she intro­duced Dylan to the music world, though. He was already part of the Green­wich Vil­lage Folk scene when they met. Read a tex­tured and detailed descrip­tion of those days in Alix Dobkin’s mem­oir, My Red Blood. http://www.alyson.com/9781593501075.html

  • I have always loved Joan’s music. I was look­ing for­ward to see­ing a video clip of her singing or talk­ing at age 70yrs.

    When I was in my teens and twen­ty’s I used to walk around the house singing her songs and peo­ple thought I sound­ed like her! I doubt­ed it and put it down to our sim­i­lar phys­i­cal fea­tures because they also said I looked like her. Then, I met her cousin in Boston (whose name now slips my mind). I met him via his then girl­friend, a clas­si­cal musi­cian acquain­tance whom I had pre­vi­ous­ly met in Tokyo where I was liv­ing. He told me, “gee… you real­ly look like my cousin, Joan”. I smiled and real­ized for the first time that per­haps oth­ers telling me I look(ed) like her must be true after all. Strange­ly, we do have the same hair style both then and now.

    May you live until 120yrs Joan – and any­way you will live on beyond that in the hearts and minds of many…


  • Tinkie says:

    Hap­py Birth­day and tru­ly, thank you, for your beau­ti­ful songs and their mean­ing­full words.

  • mike says:

    great video clip. ty.

  • Bill Crawford says:

    Hap­py Birth­day Joan!!!!!! I met you twice–once in Orlan­do and once in Tam­pa Flori­da. I have spo­ken to your son Gabe a few times about music. Thank you for mak­ing the world a more beau­ti­ful and humane place. God Bless You on your spe­cial day!!!

  • Liz says:

    Sor­ry, but she turned 70 in Jan­u­ary!

  • David J Greenberg says:

    Well, I was there in 1958. Yes, true. It was mag­ic; her voice just blew you away. Before the 47 debut she also was at the Cafe Yana one night and sang along with Fred Bazler and I and then with some oth­ers, came back to our pad on Mont­fort St (not there any­more) and sang a few songs and just hung out. Nice mem­o­ry.


    Nice to see this again. I had for­got­ten that I respond­ed ear­li­er. Joan could sing any­thing at first glance and make you believe in the song. And, after all these year, look­ing back and real­iz­ing that a high­er cause has always dri­ven her. She is prob­a­bly the bravest woman I have ever met.

  • Bob Olive says:

    That’s a very ear­ly per­for­mance, but it’s not Club 47.

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