BROOKSVILLE — The Good Life Center hosted an evening with singer and songwriter Noel Paul Stookey July 16.
The former Peter, Paul and Mary musician entertained a packed house at Forest Farm on Cape Rosier.
Stookey sang songs from his four-song compact disc titled “summerfallwinterspring,” which was released last year.
The musician interspersed his music with thoughts and quotes about 20th century economist and homesteader Scott Nearing (1883-1983, he died 18 days after his 100th birthday.)
“He prescribed the good life and practiced what he preached,” Stookey said.
Nearing and his wife, Helen, created their homestead, called Forest Farm, on a five-acre parcel overlooking Spirit Cove.
The Nearings are considered pioneers of the back to the land movement, which espouses self-sufficient living off the land.
Steven Fritchman, a minister of the First Los Angeles Unitarian Church, introduced Nearing to his congregation in 1954. Stookey read an excerpt of that introduction.
“To me, as to thousands, he has been a merciless, lovable, provocative, suggestive prophet of righteousness, an exemplar of common sense in living and of courage to use that seventy percent of the brain most people let rot unused and to exercise that 98 percent of the conscience which most people do not exercise at all,” Fritchman said to his congregation.
“In this new day of the toad, this time of babbling fools in high places, of idiot misleaders with their fingers in the public jam pot and their consciences in the deep freeze, because of Scott Nearing, we should all be a little more courageous as we face the world today,” he said.
Stookey followed that reading with a song from his CD, “Impeachable,” which is set to the tune of “Unforgettable,” which will be familiar to fans of Nat King Cole or his daughter Natalie.
“Impeachable” lyrics are below:
That’s what you are
And yet so far
You’ve avoided closer scrutiny
Even though Vladimir Putin, he
Opened many doors
It only makes you more
And when some day
We can say ‘you’re fired!’
And you go away
You may have thought
You were unreachable
But history makes
Some moments ‘teachable’
Someday Pence may be
Stookey lured his audience into participating in one of the last songs of the evening, titled “Building Block.”
“If you’re thinking ‘oh no, another sing-along?’ I’ve got just the part for you,” said Stookey. “You don’t have to sing, you just have to say ‘building block.’”
And they did.
The Good Life Center is open this summer Thursdays through Sundays through Labor Day from 1 to 5 p.m. or by appointment.