Jerry Burgan – Folk Singer, Songwriter and Storyteller
Co-Founder of We Five, the Grammy-nominated Folk Rock group famous for You Were On My Mind, the million selling 60’s anthem of triumph over the pain of love lost and found. Jerry plays guitar, banjo, ukulele and arranges much of We Five’s music. “Keeper Of The Flame,” he’s the only band member on every We Five album from 1965 to the present.
Jerry began playing with We Five co-founder, the late Michael Stewart, when his brother (John Stewart of the Kingston Trio), gave Mike a banjo. The duo worked their way through high school singing folk music and trying various members until eventually finding Bob Jones, Pete Fullerton, and Beverly Bivens for the transition into folk-rock.
Jerry’s wife, Debbie, joined We Five in 1968 and sang lead for the next 5 CDs. They stopped touring full time in the 80s, and focused on writing contemporary Christian songs, while leading music at their local church.
Jerry’s songwriting began under John’s tutelage and many of his tunes have been recorded by We Five. The title song from “Take Each Day As It Comes,” written by Jerry, was also used as a theme by CBS FM radio stations in Los Angeles and San Francisco in the 70’s. He then began writing for TV and radio spots, as well as for corporate presentations.
Going back to his roots in 2011, Jerry recorded a solo CD called Reflections, Songs & Stories for the Global Recording Artists label. He performs acoustic shows at concert clubs, coffee houses, libraries, and created a program about Woody Guthrie for the Education Department at the Grammy Museum, where he appeared in Clive Davis Theater.
Jerry is finalizing work on his first book, “Wounds To Bind: A Memoir Of The Folk-Rock Revolution” with Alan Rifkin, that’s due for release by Scarecrow Press in early 2014.
We Five’s website is www.officialwefive.com
We Five – live in color – on the Hollywood Palace in 1965: