Bio   13 comments

Gary Kanter-2Gary is a New York-born Songwriter/Humorist with a passion for topical songs in the tradition of Phil Ochs, Tom Paxton, and John Prine.  His songs will make you laugh, cry, and think, though not necessarily in that order.   His songs of labor and solidarity are reminiscent of  labor icon, Joe Hill.

“The topical, political vein of folk music is alive and well in the Northwest. This latest release from Gary Kanter features a fist-full of tunes that combine vibrant wordplay, deft commentary and cutting humor.”  —  Mike Buchman, Victory Review

Topics include Pres. T-Rump (“Grab Life By The Pussy!”), right-wing attacks on Labor (“Eff The Freedom foundation”), TSA (“Keep Your Hands Offa My Junk!”), Citizens United (“I’m Gonna Marry G.E.”) personal isolatGK-NWCCLC Picnic2ion, America’s lost greatness, and a reminder that the current struggle for rights is just the latest in a history of such fights (“We Marched Down This Road Before”).   The latter happens to be the title track of Gary’s latest 1/19-released CD.  “Your Own Brand of Blues,” about tavern and street singing, has been described by critic J.W. McClure as “ragged as any Kris Kristofferson bar song.”

“Kanter is one of those surprising gems, who sneaks up on your funny bone while hitting the empathy nerve.”  —  Chris Lunn, Ancient Victorys

Gary Kanter may be the most dangerous songwriter in Washington State—maybe in the country!” – Thaddeus Spae
Gary has also taken on the mantle of “labor troubadour,” having organized and performed at numerous benefits for organized labor including two concerts to fundraisers for the Wisconsin recall elections.  He had penned two labor songs at the behest of the Northwest labor community including “Northwest Union Call” and “Right To Work Is Wrong.”  He recently performed both at the Washington State Central Labor Council held in Vancouver, WA (7/13).  “Right To Work…” was requested by the president of his own union local, Musicians’ Association of Seattle (Local 76-493, AFM) and will be featured on its website for universal access.  “Northwest Union Call” is currently being produced as a DVD.  Both songs were featured on his third CD, “Forever Vigilant.”
Gary is also co-hosting “We Do The Work”, a labor-oriented weekly radio show originating on KSVR-FM 91.7, in Mt. Vernon, WA. Streaming live at with complete archives available at

Posted January 28, 2013 by garykanter

13 responses to “Bio

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  1. Enjoyed our conversation. Kindred spirits…from the human tribe.

  2. Great hearing you, last night!!!

    pamela suzanne burdwell
  3. Hey Gary, I met you today (Thurs., 10/3) at Green River Music when you stopped in to buy some picks & strings. You told me about your affiliation with the musicians’ union and about your songwriting. I went to the unions website and listened to “Right to Work is Wrong”. Thanks for sharing. Nice tune, and welcome sentiment. Keep going!

  4. love your energy Gary

  5. So I’m going to this thing, tonight and after this thing, there’s a thing, and then you’re going to be at that thing, doing a thing..
    Who are you? Why are you following me around?

  6. Do you remember meeting me in 1974 at Pikes Market in Seattle? My name was Kim Rugh, & now I’ve kept my deceased husband’s last name of Bergier. I have a close friend who visited Pikes Market yesterday, with his daughter, & was reminded of you. Because your face is not clear on Facebook I’m checking to see if you are the same Gary Kanter who was a street musician, singing & playing guitar.

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