Ronnie Gilbert, member of folk quartet the Weavers, dies

MILL VALLEY, Calif. (AP) — Singer Ronnie Gilbert, a member of the influential 1950s folk quartet the Weavers, has died. She was 88.

Her longtime partner, Donna Korones, says Gilbert died of natural causes Saturday at a retirement community in Mill Valley.

With the Weavers, whose other members were Pete Seeger, Lee Hays and Fred Hellerman, Gilbert helped spark a national folk revival by churning out hit recordings of “Goodnight Irene,” ”On Top of Old Smokey,” ”If I Had A Hammer,” ”Kisses Sweeter Than Wine” and “Wimoweh.”

The group was hugely popular before being targeted by anti-Communists and blacklisted during the Red Scare. After disbanding in 1964, Gilbert worked as a stage actor and psychologist.

She is survived by her daughter, Lisa, and Korones, her partner of 30 years.


This story has been corrected to show the first name of Gilbert’s partner is Donna, not Dona.