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Title Oral History of Rita Abrams
Collection Oral History
Scope & Content Musician and teacher Rita Abrams was born in 1943 in Cleveland, Ohio. She graduated from the University of Michigan and did graduate work in Special Education at Boston University. In 1969, seeking a change of climate and scenery, Rita left the East Coast for the Bay Area and found a job as a kindergarten teacher at Mill Valley's Strawberry Point School. Inspired by her newfound home, Rita describes how she sat on a bench in the downtown plaza on Christmas Day 1969, and composed her now-famous song "Mill Valley." Rita discusses the value of music in her life and in schools, and talks about the trajectory of "Mill Valley" from its start on the downtown bench to international hit, including the involvement of Strawberry Point students and the song's release by Warner Bros. Soon after its 1970 release, "Mill Valley" was made the "official" song of the City of Mill Valley.
Audio and Transcript Click here to hear recording.
Click here to read the transcript.
Dates of Creation 1970-08-04
Narrator's name Abrams, Rita
Interviewer Anderson, Leonard
Creator Mill Valley Historical Society
Extent and Medium Transcript: 16pp
Recording: 00:47:28
Search Terms "Mill Valley" (the song)
Abrams, Rita
Anderson, Leonard
Beedle, Granville L.
Beerman, Greg
Carney, Jack
Collins, James A.
Elder, Lynn
Elementary school
Folk music
Friedman, Bryan
Gordan, Alfred
Mill Valley (town)
Mill Valley Public Library
Pearson, Bob
Record sales
Recording industry
Reprise Records
Reynolds, Malvina
Rock band
Rock music
San Francisco
Song Writing
Songs & music
Strawberry Point Elementary School
Object ID 1970.001.001
Object Name Recording
Copyrights Transcript and recording copyright Mill Valley Public Library, 1970. Materials are made available for research purposes only; all rights are reserved to the Mill Valley Public Library. Requests for permission to quote for publication or for any other usage must be obtained from the Library.