Bev Grant is a labor and social activist, feminist, singer-songwriter, photographer and 2017 Joe Hill Award winner from the Labor Heritage Foundation for her work as a cultural worker as well as the 2017 winner of the ASCAP Foundation’s Jay Gorney award for her song We Were There. Former leader of the cutting edge 70s and 80s folk/rock & world music band, Human Condition, Bev is also founder and director of the Brooklyn Women’s Chorus.
Bev grew up singing and playing with her two older sisters in Portland, OR. After moving to New York City in the early 60s, she formed her band The Human Condition, who recorded their first album “Working People Gonna Rise,” with Paredon Records, now distributed by Smithsonian/Folkways. Her song “Inez” is included in the Smithsonian/Folkways “Best of Broadside” collection.
As cultural director of the UALE NE Union Women’s Summer School she developed and wrote the theme song for the multi-media women’s labor history show, called “We Were There!”, which she presents throughout the United States and which became global when she presented it in October 2017 in Costa Rica at the United Trade Union Confederation’s 3rd Women’s Conference.
Ron Olesko, WFDU folk DJ and columnist, featured Bev and her recently released CD “It’s Personal” in the May 20, 2017 issue of SingOut Magazine, saying…
”Over the past few decades, Bev and her songs have been part of many social struggles including the labor movement, so it came as somewhat of a surprise to discover that her new solo CD It’s Personal is an introspective and heart-felt collection of personal songs. However, closer examination reveals that the songs in this collection give an insight into what has motivated and shaped this extraordinary artist. It’s Personal features a diverse mix of folk, jazz and good old rock and roll to gives us a glimpse of the world that is fighting to make a better place for all.”
In July 1917, Bev begin scanning images from photo negatives she shot as a radical photo journalist in the late 1960s, including some iconic photos of the early radical Women’s Movement (The Miss America Beauty Pageant protest in 1968, and the W.I.T.C.H. Hex on Wall Street on Halloween in 1968), She’s exhibited at OSMOS Gallery in NYC, and received several favorable reviews in main stream media. In December 2021, OSMOS published a monograph of Bev’s photographs called: Bev Grant Photography: 1968-1972.
“What struck me so profoundly was the fact that Grant prefigured this whole notion of intersectionality.” Grant’s images, Gingeras said, “tell the story of this utopic moment before things got very divisive and polarized. And the echoes of the struggles she documented are still being heard right now.” The New Yorker Photo Booth 9/28/2018 https://www.newyorker.com/culture/photo-booth/a-photographers-life-changing-encounter-with-political-struggle
Music website: www.bevgrant.com