Volume 80, Number 44 | March 31 - April 6, 2011
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933
Jack Hardy, 63, folk singer who ran weekly ‘fast folk’ workshops
By Albert Amateau
Jack Hardy, a folk singer and folk music promoter who lived in the Village for nearly three decades, died Fri., March 11, of lung cancer at the age of 63.
Although not well known to the general public, he was a mentor and an inspiration to a generation of folk musicians.
Jack Hardy wrote many protest and political songs, as well as romantic ballads, during a career that included club gigs and the production in 2000 of a CD set for Smithsonian Folkways.
Born in South Bend, Indiana, to Lillian, a painter, and Gordon Hardy, a musician, former dean of Juilliard and past president of the Aspen Music Festival, Jack Hardy grew up in New York City, Aspen, Colorado, and Durham, Connecticut. He graduated from the University of Hartford.
From the late 1970’s until he was hospitalized recently, he held Monday night workshops in his West Houston St. apartment that attracted folk musicians from near and far to perform their newest songs. The rule at the weekly “fast folk” workshops was that no song was supposed to be more than a week old.
His son, Malcolm of St. Louis, and three daughters — Morgan of Manhattan; Miranda of Syracuse; and Eva Peck of South Lake Tahoe, Nevada — survive. His parents, residents of Manhattan, a brother, Christopher of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, and a sister, Susan Suechting of Elk Mound, Wisconsin, also survive.