Joan Baez Quotes

January 9, 1941 -

Joan Baez, 2015
Joan Baez, 2015. Selin Alemdar/Redferns via Getty Images

Joan Baez, American folksinger, is of Mexican, Scottish, and English descent. Many of her songs have a political message, and she has been an activist for peace and human rights.

Selected Joan Baez Quotations

• My concern has always been for the people who are victimized, unable to speak for themselves and who need outside help.

• Action is the antidote to despair.

• All serious daring starts from within.

• I've never had a humble opinion. If you've got an opinion, why be humble about it?

• Instead of getting hard ourselves and trying to compete, women should try and give their best qualities to men - bring them softness, teach them how to cry.

• It seems to me that those songs that have been any good, I have nothing much to do with the writing of them. The words have just crawled down my sleeve and come out on the page.

•  I saw Pete Seeger play when I was 13. I’m still trying to adjust to the fact that he died. Until then I was only singing rhythm and blues, black music with four chords. The white music around seemed provisional and silly. Then my auntie took me to a Pete Seeger concert and the coming together of social awareness, of courage, of songwriting – that changed everything for ever.

• Hypothetical questions get hypothetical answers.

• The only thing that's been a worse flop than the organization of non-violence has been the organization of violence.

• If it's natural to kill, why do men have to go into training to learn how?

• From the start I had an aversion to anything commercial. They said I was an impossible diva because I insisted on a black stage with one light and a microphone.

• I never felt I was a dreamer, I thought I was a realist. I was obsessed, I had to say what I had to say.

And that got me in trouble. Some people would shy away. Other people thought I was right. And I was right about a lot of things. But sometimes people just didn’t want to hear what I was saying.

• It's hard to find something that doesn't have a long way to go. My little motto is "Little victories and big defeats."

• Good morning, children of the 80s. This is your Woodstock, and it's long overdue. at the Philadelphia Live Aid concert

• As long as one keeps searching, the answers come.

• To love means you also trust.

• The easiest kind of relationship is with ten thousand people, the hardest is with one.

• Only you and I can help the sun rise each coming morning. If we don't, it may drench itself out in sorrow.

• You don't get to choose how you're going to die. Or when. You can decide how you're going to live now.

Related Resources for Joan Baez

About These Quotes

Quote collection assembled by Jone Johnson Lewis. Each quotation page in this collection and the entire collection © Jone Johnson Lewis. This is an informal collection assembled over many years. I regret that I am not be able to provide the original source if it is not listed with the quote.