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Woody at 100

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Subject: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 07 Jan 12 - 12:11 PM

Woody 100, a website celebrating the centennial anniversary of Woody Guthrie's birth.


This year, this land will be Woody Guthrie's
The Grammy Museum plans 'Woody at 100' events to honor what would have been Woody Guthrie's milestone birthday. His music speaks to the Occupy protesters of today.

By Randy Lewis, Los Angeles Times
January 6, 2012

The colorful life and rich musical legacy of Woody Guthrie, widely considered America's greatest folk troubadour and songwriter, will be celebrated throughout 2012 in an expansive nationwide series of all-star concerts, previously unissued recordings, conferences, museum exhibitions and educational programs marking the 100th anniversary of Guthrie's birth.

Guthrie's family, including his children Arlo and Nora, is collaborating closely with officials at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles in assembling "Woody at 100." It will include a broad swath of activities that will take place from California to the New York island, from the redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters — mirroring the words of "This Land Is Your Land," Guthrie's best-known song among some 3,000 he wrote before his death in 1967 at age 55.

An overarching goal of the various activities is to introduce younger audiences to Guthrie's music and remind all listeners of his place in the long history of music as a powerful tool of social change, said Grammy Museum Executive Director Robert Santelli, who is overseeing much of the centennial planning with Nora Guthrie.

"This is without question the largest centennial celebration of any American pop or roots musician," said Santelli, who previously worked at the Experience Music Project in Seattle and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland before coming to Los Angeles to open the Grammy Museum a little more than three years ago.

Lineups for various concerts are being finalized, but Santelli said the performances will include numerous contemporary musicians whose music has been influenced by Guthrie's songs empathizing with the poor, the powerless and the downtrodden.

His music strongly influenced generations of musicians, from '50s folk revivalists including Pete Seeger and the Weavers to '60s singer-songwriters such as Bob Dylan, John Lennon, Joan Baez and Phil Ochs on through politically and socially conscious performers including Jackson Browne, Bonnie Raitt, Neil Young, Crosby Stills & Nash, Bruce Springsteen, John Mellencamp and latter-day provocateurs including Rage Against the Machine and System of a Down.

It's unclear yet whether Dylan or Springsteen will take part in any of the concerts, but Santelli said that participants also will come from well beyond the folk, Americana and rock genres most closely associated with Guthrie's music. He is reaching out to the hip-hop community to show the connection between Guthrie's songs of conscience and the music that has represented the voice of the disaffected urban communities in the last three decades.

"We're just trying to keep up with what everyone is doing," said Nora Guthrie, the youngest of his three children and the driving force behind the Woody Guthrie Archives. "We're … not going around creating press for Woody Guthrie. We just feel this is a nice time to say, 'This is what Pampa, Texas, is doing, this is what's going on in L.A., this is what's going on in France, Germany or Spain."

The fact that many of Guthrie's songs have been sung during "Occupy" protests in different cities is further proof of his ongoing relevance.

"He was lucky enough — or unlucky enough — to be the guy who all this stuff came into and came out of," Nora Guthrie said. "He was the one who was able to take in what everybody was saying and put it back out. Who was it that said, 'I thought this land was made for you and me'? Maybe it was a hobo. He was that kind of writer, picking up sayings and stories, attitudes and emotions. He was the ultimate fly on the wall, and that kind of character will always be around, and those ideas will always be around."

So the plethora of centennial activities is both "ambitious and totally apropos given the nature of songs of conscience right now," said Santelli, co-writer of the 1999 biography "Hard Travelin': The Life and Legacy of Woody Guthrie" and who has a second Guthrie book coming next month, "This Land Is Your Land: Woody Guthrie and the Journey of an American Folk Song."

It's one of at least half a dozen new books on Guthrie slated for publication this year. A three-CD boxed set, also titled "Woody at 100" and due in February, collects previously unreleased recordings discovered by the Smithsonian Folkways label where Guthrie did much of his recording.

"When I grew up [in the 1960s], a big part of what popular music did had to do with expression — political and social expression in lyrics," Santelli said. "We have gotten away from that for the last couple of decades, and Guthrie is, of course, the poster boy for songs of conscience."

"Today we have a generation, maybe a generation and a half, that's grown up without any sense of the power that music can have," Santelli said. "One of the goals for 2012 is to remind people that music is a very viable and potent agent for social and political change in this country. Regardless of your political beliefs or affiliation, music is a powerful tool, and it's always played a part in the American political process."

Of course, Guthrie's leftist leanings made him a target of political conservatives during his lifetime and since his death from Huntington's disease. Only in the last few years, for instance, has there been any official recognition of his music in his native state of Oklahoma, where he was born July 14, 1912, in Okemah.

Santelli said "Woody at 100" will strive to stay above partisan politics by emphasizing Guthrie's historical and cultural contributions rather than delving into the specifics of his political beliefs.

Programs designed to highlight Guthrie's role as a historical and cultural force will be offered for kindergarteners through high schoolers and as part of three- and four-day public conferences hosted at colleges and universities, culminating in multi-artist concerts in Tulsa, Okla.; Los Angeles and Salinas, Calif.; Brooklyn, N.Y.; University Park, Pa.; and Washington, D.C.

Each location will focus on a different facet of Guthrie's music: his early years in Oklahoma for the March 9-11 program in Tulsa, his life in Los Angeles for the April 13-15 event at USC, his relationship with author John Steinbeck for the May 4-6 session in Salinas. The Penn State conference Sept. 7 to 9 will focus on Guthrie's labor and union songs, the Brooklyn conference Sept. 21 to 23 explores the effect of his years living in New York and the Washington event Oct. 12 to 14 will look at his influence worldwide. These and other anniversary activities are listed on the Woody 100 centennial website.

Santelli said sessions are being designed not to overlap thematically, so that those interested in attending all of them will find fresh perspectives on different topics.

Guthrie's presence also will be recognized at numerous festivals all year, including the South by Southwest Music Conference in Austin, Texas, and folk festivals in Okemah, Okla.; Washington, D.C.; Memphis, Tenn.; Pampa, Texas; Edmonton, Canada; and Berlin.

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: BrooklynJay
Date: 07 Jan 12 - 03:42 PM

A conference in Brooklyn September 21-23?

Hmmmm.... I'll have to circle those dates on my calendar.

Jay


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 08 Jan 12 - 12:33 PM

On the "it's about time" front:

Bound for Local Glory at Last

By Patricia Cohen, NY Times
December 27, 2011

TULSA, Okla. — Oklahoma has always had a troubled relationship with her native son Woody Guthrie. The communist sympathies of America's balladeer infuriated local detractors. In 1999 a wealthy donor's objections forced the Cowboy Museum in Oklahoma City to cancel a planned exhibition on Guthrie organized by the Smithsonian Institution. It wasn't until 2006, nearly four decades after his death, that the Oklahoma Hall of Fame got around to adding him to its ranks.

But as places from California to the New York island get ready to celebrate the centennial of Guthrie's birth, in 2012, Oklahoma is finally ready to welcome him home. The George Kaiser Family Foundation in Tulsa plans to announce this week that it is buying the Guthrie archives from his children and building an exhibition and study center to honor his legacy.

"Oklahoma was like his mother," said his daughter Nora Guthrie, throwing back her tangle of gray curls as she reached out in an embrace. "Now he's back in his mother's arms."

The archive includes the astonishing creative output of Guthrie during his 55 years. There are scores of notebooks and diaries written in his precise handwriting and illustrated with cartoons, watercolors, stickers and clippings; hundreds of letters; 581 artworks; a half-dozen scrapbooks; unpublished short stories, novels and essays; as well as the lyrics to the 3,000 or more songs he scribbled on scraps of paper, gift wrap, napkins, paper bags and place mats. Much of the material has rarely or never been seen in public, including the lyrics to most of the songs. Guthrie could not write musical notation, so the melodies have been lost.

The foundation, which paid $3 million for the archives, is planning a kickoff celebration on March 10, with a conference in conjunction with the University of Tulsa and a concert sponsored by the Grammy Museum featuring his son Arlo Guthrie and other musicians. Although the collection won't be transferred until 2013, preparations for its arrival are already in motion. Construction workers are clearing out piles of red brick and wire mesh from the loading dock in the northeast end of the old Tulsa Paper Company building, in the Brady District of the city, where the planned Guthrie Center is taking shape. The center is part of an ambitious plan to revitalize the downtown arts community.

Now that the back walls are punched out, workers trucking wheelbarrows of concrete can look across the tracks to the tower built by BOK Financial, which George Kaiser, whose foundation bears his name, presides over as chairman. Forbes magazine ranks Mr. Kaiser as the richest man in Oklahoma and No. 31 on its Forbes 400 list.

Ken Levit, the foundation's executive director, said he thought of doing something for Guthrie after the Hall of Fame induction. Nowhere in Tulsa, he said, is there even a plaque paying homage to this folk legend, who composed "This Land Is Your Land"; performed with Pete Seeger and Lead Belly; wrote the fictionalized autobiography "Bound for Glory"; and sang at countless strikes and migrant labor protests in the 1930s and '40s. Mr. Levit began a more than three-year campaign to win the consent of Ms. Guthrie, who had taken custody of the boxes that her mother, Marjorie Guthrie, had stowed away in the basement of her home in Howard Beach, Queens.

Ms. Guthrie, who as one of Guthrie's youngest children, didn't really know her father until Huntington's disease began to rob him of his sanity, movement and speech many years before his death, in 1967, said she only rediscovered the kind of man he once was when she started to page through the boxes about 15 years ago.

"I fell in love through this material with my father," Ms. Guthrie, 61, a former dancer, said from her office in Mount Kisco, N.Y.

Her older brothers Arlo and Joady were happy to have her take custody of the papers. Of Arlo, she said, "He was filled up with being Woody Guthrie's son, so he was glad the responsibility moved to me."

She said the information contained in the archives can clear up misconceptions about her father that she has frequently heard at scholarly conferences and read in articles, including that he didn't write love songs or sexually provocative lyrics. She has also opened up his notebooks to contemporary musicians like Billy Bragg and Wilco, Jackson Browne, Rob Wasserman, Lou Reed and Tom Morello so that they could compose music to her father's words.

One of those artists, Jonatha Brooke, is starting off the Guthrie Foundation and Grammy Museum's yearlong centennial celebrations on Jan. 18 at Lincoln Center with a concert of new songs she wrote for the lyrics.

Woody Guthrie's music has also had added play time this year as Arlo Guthrie, Mr. Seeger, and other musicians have sung his protest songs at Occupy Wall Street demonstrations in New York and elsewhere.

While this poor folks' hero and the richest man in Oklahoma might not seem to have much in common, Mr. Kaiser's foundation, with its $4 billion endowment, is dedicated to helping Tulsa's most disadvantaged. "I cried for an hour after meeting George Kaiser," Ms. Guthrie said. "This puts together what I've always dreamed of."

Brian Hosmer, a history professor at the University of Tulsa who is organizing the March conference — ironically titled "Different Shades of Red" — said Guthrie's legacy is contested in some quarters.

"There is no doubt there will be some voices in opposition to the way Guthrie is being emphasized — Oklahoma is about the reddest state you can have," Mr. Hosmer explained, referring to its conservatism. "And when Woody Guthrie was a boy, Oklahoma was also the reddest state because we had more socialists elected to public office than any other."

Guthrie always said he was influenced by the songs he had heard his mother sing in his hometown, Okemah, about an hour's drive from Tulsa, with a population of 3,000. His radicalism offended local officials, who scorned Guthrie until an Okemah resident, Sharon Jones, decided to do something about it in the late 1990s. One of her cousins, an avid Guthrie fan, came to visit and was shocked there wasn't a single mention of her idol. So Ms. Jones, who died in 2009, created the Woody Guthrie Coalition, which organized an annual folk festival, called WoodyFest, around his birthday on July 14, as well as a statue, a mural and a memorial. Sensitive to the area's Baptist beliefs (including Ms. Jones's), no alcohol was permitted at the celebration until this year.

Dee Jones, Sharon's husband, explained that Guthrie "was kind of taboo because some influential people in this town thought Woody Guthrie had communist leanings." But once the community realized that the 3,000 or so attendees brought in business, everyone got behind it, Mr. Jones said.

A couple of blocks from the memorial statue, visitors can run a finger along the fading letters "W-O-O-D-Y" on a fragment of Main Street's original sidewalk, where the 16-year-old Guthrie signed his name in wet cement in 1928.

Mary Jo Guthrie Edgmon, Woody's 90-year-old sister, always hosts a pancake breakfast during the four-day music festival. A white-haired, elfin woman with a persistent smile and a sharp wit, Ms. Edgmon remembered how her brother was always making music.

"You'd sit down at the dinner table, and there'd be glasses of water, and he'd pick up a fork and play the glasses all around the table," she said. "If it made music, he played it."

Reciting snatches of Guthrie's poetry and songs, Ms. Edgmon said her brother never cared what people thought of him and did not necessarily hold a particular affection for his birthplace. "He didn't get attached to anything," she said. "Everywhere was his home."

Still, after so many years of Oklahomans' snubbing her brother's memory, she said the whole family was thrilled he was being honored: "What we were all shooting for," she said, "was acknowledgment."


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Stringsinger
Date: 08 Jan 12 - 01:16 PM

"Santelli said "Woody at 100" will strive to stay above partisan politics by emphasizing Guthrie's historical and cultural contributions rather than delving into the specifics of his political beliefs."

You can't do that. Woody would have hated that statement. Woody was a product of his socialist beliefs and that informed his writing. "Above partisan politics" is a specious distortion and a disemboweling of his music and writing, an attempt to sanitize and clean up by making his work sterile. It's made to order for modern music consumers, most of whom will have no idea of what Woody was or tried to do.

He would have been with the Occupiers today in the various parks or shelters. He would have loved that movement.


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Tootler
Date: 08 Jan 12 - 03:59 PM

Someone from the Ukulele Underground Forum has added channel for Woody songs accompanied on Uke. http://www.youtube.com/user/woody2012ukulele


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 08 Jan 12 - 05:07 PM

Yeah, Stringsinger, I thought that was pretty off-track, myself. Predictable for the Grammy Museum, perhaps, but ridiculous, nonetheless.

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 16 Jan 12 - 05:03 PM

Commentary on the political front (with Woody as a premise): Is This Land Made for You and Me?, by Bill Moyers and Michael Winship

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 16 Jan 12 - 05:07 PM

Woody Guthrie Centenary - current Mudcat thread from Will Kaufman (in the UK) about his two shows about Woody Guthrie.

~ Becky in Tucson

(I am envisioning this thread as a clearinghouse for Woody stuff in this centenary year, not meaning to exclude threads with individual announcements of events, though.)


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Mark Ross
Date: 16 Jan 12 - 05:41 PM

Frank, again you're absolutely correct. When they named a power substation for Woody back in the '60's, somebody pointed out the attempted emasculation of a radical poet. Let's not forget where he stood.

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Stewart
Date: 07 Mar 12 - 01:22 PM

Woody at 100
Jim Hightower

Where's Woody when we need him?

In these times of tinkle-down economics - with the money powers thinking that they're the top dogs and that the rest of us are just a bunch of fire hydrants - we need for the hard-hitting (yet uplifting) musical stories, social commentaries and inspired lyrical populism of Woody Guthrie.

This year will mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of this legendary grassroots troubadour, who came out of the Oklahoma dust bowl to rally America's "just plain folks" to fight back against the elites who were knocking them down.

As we know, the elites are back, strutting around cockier than ever with their knocking-down ways - but now comes the good news out of Tulsa, Okla., that Woody, too, is being revived, spiritually speaking. In a national collaboration between the Guthrie family and the George Kaiser Family Foundation, a center is being built in Tulsa to archive, present to the world and celebrate the marvelous songs, books, letters and other materials generated from Guthrie's deeply fertile mind.

To give the center a proper kick-start, four great universities, the Grammy Museum, the Smithsonian Institution and the Kaiser Foundation are teaming up to host a combination of symposiums and concerts (think of them as Woody-Paloozas) throughout this centennial year. They begin this Saturday, March 10 at the University of Tulsa, then they move on down the road to Brooklyn College and on to the University of Southern California and Penn State University.

If Woody himself were to reappear among us, rambling from town to town, he wouldn't need to write any new material. He'd see that the Wall Street banksters who crashed our economy are getting fat bonus checks, while the victims of their greed are still getting pink slips and eviction notices, and he could just pull out this verse from his old song, "Pretty Boy Floyd":

Guthrie unabashedly celebrated America's working class, seeing in it the commitment to the common good that lifts America up.He drove The Powers That Be crazy (a pretty short ride for many of them back then, just as it is today). So they branded him a unionist, socialist, communist and all sorts of other "ists" - but he withered them with humor that got people laughing at them: "I ain't a communist necessarily, but I have been in the red all my life."

Going down those "ribbons of highway" that he extolled in "This Land Is Your Land," Guthrie found that the only real hope of fairness and justice was in the people themselves: "When you bum around for a year or two and look at all the folks that's down and out, busted, disgusted (but can still be trusted), you wish that somehow or other they could ... pitch in and build this country back up again." He concluded, "There is just one way to save yourself, and that's to get together and work and fight for everybody."

And, indeed, that's exactly what grassroots people are doing all across our country today. From Occupy Wall Street to the ongoing Wisconsin uprising, from battles against the Keystone XL Pipeline to the successful local and state campaigns to repeal the Supreme Court's atrocious Citizens United edict, people are adding their own verses to Woody's musical refrain: "I ain't a-gonna be treated this a-way."

Where's Woody when we need him? He's right there, inside each of us.

For information on Saturday's Guthrie Centennial Celebration, go to www.utulsa.edu/guthrie.

To find out more about Jim Hightower, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at www.creators.com.
COPYRIGHT 2012 CREATORS.COM

Cheers, S in Seattle


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST,olddude
Date: 07 Mar 12 - 02:11 PM

The music speaks for itself for sure


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 07 Mar 12 - 03:15 PM

Clickifying... Woody at One Hundred: The Woody Guthrie Centennial Celebration 1912-2012 at the University of Tulsa, March 10, 2012.

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST,999
Date: 07 Mar 12 - 04:56 PM

Jim, that is a fine piece of writing.


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: ChanteyLass
Date: 07 Mar 12 - 11:07 PM

It seems fitting that at the Newport Folk Festival this summer, this will be one of the acts: http://www.newportfolkfest.net/lineup/guthrie-family


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 30 Mar 12 - 09:54 PM

An interview with Nora Guthrie from the PBS News Hour (online only): Conversation: Woody Guthrie at 100

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST,Dani
Date: 31 Mar 12 - 09:26 AM

Nice interview.

Just this morning finished Joe Klein's "Woody Guthrie: A LIfe". Curious to know if anyone else has read it, and what you thought?

Dani


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 31 Mar 12 - 12:44 PM

Dani, I've read it, but it's been a while. I need to look back at it. I've never read Woody's "Bound for Glory" and have been meaning to for a long time. See below for some more incentive.

The Thomas Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa has an exhibit up through the end of April, but they've got quite a number of images online, too: Woody at One Hundred: The Woody Guthrie Centennial Celebration 1912-2012.

The Tulsa conference is now done. I see that my link above was broken, here's the correct link, and the correct conference title: Different Shades of Red: Woody Guthrie and the Oklahoma Experience at 100. There's no after-the-fact report on the conference at the link, though.

I looked for more...

The Tulsa World (local newspaper/site) has created a website celebrating Woody: Woody Guthries Comes Home.

There's a lengthy article there written prior to the conference: Woody Guthrie's politics still volatile after his death.

Robin Wheeler of the Riverfront Times (St. Louis) has a report on the conference: The Woody Guthrie Centennial Celebration Kicks Off in Tulsa, and also on the tribute concert: Arlo Guthrie, Rosanne Cash, the Flaming Lips and More at the Woody Guthrie Centennial Concert.

Wheeler and Scott Allen have started a special blog with an interesting premise: Bound for Glory 100. In addition to what may arise from the invitation below, she's blogging her own Woody-related thoughts, activities, and links there.

Here's what we're asking you to do:

1. Read Woody Guthrie's "Bound for Glory" at some point in 2012 to mark his 100th birthday.

2. Write something about the experience. Anything. Book report. How it made you feel. What you think of America. What the story and music mean to you. Whatever the words prompt you to say. Say it. You're not going to say anything wrong.

3. Email your writing to boundforglory1912@gmail.com with a bit about yourself. We'll put it on this blog. With your name on it, of course. Your work belongs to you.

4. Spread the word.

That's it. No catch. We're not coming after you if you say you want to participate and don't. There's no deadline, other than December 31, 2012.

What's the point? The point is to get as many people as possible to take a look at Woody Guthrie. From people who've never heard of him, to the experts. Kids to adults. Music nerds, literary nerds, and people who aren't nerds at all.

Don't think you can write? We don't care. We want to know what you have to say anyway.

Submitted writings will only be edited for typos. Keeping your words as you want them said.

And that's it. For now. We'll see what happens as the year progresses.

Currently, 25 people have already volunteered to participate. We've also had volunteers host the website and design the graphics. We're thankful for their work and spirit of cooperation. This is a cooperative effort, first and foremost.

Let's see what a bunch of individuals can do with their voices. Woody would approve.


Wheeler has a great post about visiting the Gilcrease Museum exhibit on the Bound for Glory 100 blog: "All You Can Write is What You Can See".

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST
Date: 31 Mar 12 - 10:46 PM

I never read bound for glory But i have been meaning to for a long time. Frank I completely agree


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Mark Ross
Date: 01 Apr 12 - 12:41 AM

Read BFG when I was 14, scarred my for life, I guess.


Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: BrooklynJay
Date: 01 Apr 12 - 01:25 PM

Bound For Glory must be taken with a grain of salt. Several grains, actually, because Woody had a tendency to alter the facts when and where he saw fit. It must not be viewed as pure amd accurate autobiography. Other than that, it's good reading.

Anyone wanting to read about Woody Guthrie should start with the biographies by Joe Klein and Ed Cray, respectively. IMO, you have to read them both. The problem with Klein's book is that he wrote it when some people were still alive (Marjorie Guthrie's first husband, in particular), and names and facts were altered. Cray's book didn't have such restrictions. A few things in the books will contradict each other, but these are the books I'd start with. They dovetail quite nicely.

The book Pastures of Plenty, though out of print, is also worthwhile. There's also a book by Elizabeth Partridge that has some merit. I feel the recent Woody Guthrie - American Radical should be read only after reading the ones previously listed, as it glosses over much biographical detail, assuming the reader is already familiar with the story. But, as a book where the primary focus is on Woody's politics, it can be quite enlightening.

Just my opinions, for what they're worth.

Jay


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 01 Apr 12 - 03:02 PM

Good points, BrooklynJay. I recommend both Klein's and Cray's books, too. I'm curious about how the facts are played with in Bound for Glory. I have seen the movie. :-) Maybe a bit of compare-and-contrast would be a good thing to send to the Bound for Glory 100 blog.

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Apr 12 - 07:39 PM

I saw the movie and I have to say that I always thought the David Carradine was an odd choice to play Woody. But it seemed to work okay


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Mark Ross
Date: 01 Apr 12 - 09:54 PM

In his book WOODY AND ME, Ed Robbins (who helped get Woody involved in the left in LA), talks about his relationship and time with Woody. In the second half of the book he talks about being on the set watching the movie of BFG being made. He ends by saying that if Woody had anything to do with the film, he would've walked off and gone to work with Cesar Chavez.

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Apr 12 - 10:04 PM

Maybe so. I heard Harlod Leventhal had the script for quite sometime and we wanted to put it to use and to get Woody more known.

Also I heard that Jim Longi had written a book about Woody and Cisco. can anyone give me their thoughts on it?


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Mark Ross
Date: 01 Apr 12 - 11:42 PM

The book that Jimmy Longhi wrote, WOODY, CISCO, AND ME is the best book written about Woody. It describes the 3's adventures aboard ship in the Merchant Marine during World War 2. It is the best description of folk music in action, and the best up close view of how the seminal folksinger of the 20th Century approached his people, and his craft. The story of Woody integrating the ships' concert is priceless. I recommend it highly.

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST,Dani
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 06:50 AM

How did I miss this?!


http://www.amazon.com/American-Masters-Guthrie-Bruce-Springsteen/dp/B000X1ZPEM/ref=pd_luc_gc_rec_01_02_t_lh


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 12:26 PM

Here's the Mudcat thread discussing that PBS American Masters 2006 program, Woody Guthrie: Ain't Got No Home.

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 12:38 PM

Ive seen it a couple time also check out the one that BBC made of woody guthrie. its pretty good aswell


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 01:36 PM

BBC Two - Arena: Woody Guthrie. "First transmitted in 1988, Arena presents a documentary programme exploring the life of Woody Guthrie, the travelling American singer-songwriter who paved the way for the likes of Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen." Last aired January 2009. (This site has video via BBC iPlayer, which doesn't work for folks in the U.S.) Also available on YouTube. (1+ hour)

And, incidentally, a YouTube item of Woody on the BBC Children's Hour in 1994. (5 mins)

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Owen Woodson
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 04:15 PM

This sounds like same snippet which Hank Wangford used in a Radio 2 programmme about Woody about 30 years ago. Does anybody know if there's any more of Woody from that Childrens Hour broadcast anywhere?


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: BrooklynJay
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 04:17 PM

Of course, in my earlier post, I should have mentioned the book Woody, Cisco and Me by Jim Longhi. Thanks to Mark Ross for correcting this omission.

I would certainly add it to the "must read" list.

But, speaking only for myself, I don't know if I could choose any one book as the best book about Woody Guthrie ever written, bar none. I'll admit, though, that the Longhi book was hard to put down.

The book Sing Out Warning, Sing Out Love (from the writings of Lee Hays) has a very good chapter on Woody, from Hays's personal recollections. Highly recommended.

Jay


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 06:39 PM

I have to say that the BBC arena doc showed more of woody as a person. and how he wasnt very nice to people somtimes. Ronnie Gilbert and arthur stein i believe is his name give a few accounts but they still say what an amazing artists he was


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Stringsinger
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 07:03 PM

Yes, Jim Longhi's book is the best account although I would put Ed Cray's book up there.

Woody was a hero in my estimation. He knew he had Huntington's although they didn't ,know what to call it in those days. Woody fought for life every day and speaking of not being nice to people, well, there's Dylan.

A lot of times, artistic people aren't especially nice to everyone. It doesn't come with the territory.

My experience with Woody is that he was generous, kind, and a giving person, and he helped me as a musician and teacher.


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 08:26 PM

Didnt mean any offense to Woody himself I always thought of Woody as being very heroric since I was a child and heard his songs from My mother.


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Apr 12 - 08:33 PM

As far as Dylan goes cant say I was ever much of a fan if I was it was not for long


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 03 Apr 12 - 12:08 AM

Hi, GUEST: It's great to have your contributions to the conversation. Give yourself a handle so we'll know who we're talking to (that you're not really more than one...!). It's good etiquette and a strong preference from the moderators as well.

Or, better yet, join up -- there are several advantages, and no obligations.

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST,mando-player91
Date: 03 Apr 12 - 12:16 AM

Sorry should have done that before ! ha


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 15 Apr 12 - 09:26 PM

LA events (in a separate thread)

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Stringsinger
Date: 16 Apr 12 - 10:50 AM

What I learned from Woody: 1. Edit your songs and pare them down so that they mean exactly what you want them to mean. 2. Keep a sense of humor even when the issues get serious. 3. Show business is not interested in helping an artist but exploiting them. 4. Find the issue that you believe in and write about that. 5. Live your life as if you think it's important. 5. Write about what you believe in everyday whether an essay or a song. 6. Get involved with working people, OWS, or people who work selflessly on an important cause. 7. Don't forget to jam and share your music with many different people. 8. People have different codes of living, try to understand them. 9. Always respect your music regardless of how well you think it's developed. 10. Respect the music of others if it is honest. 11. Sometimes it's more important to play music than to jabber about ideologies.


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: BrooklynJay
Date: 16 Apr 12 - 06:57 PM

Stringsinger, in all seriousness, you should be writing a book (if you're not already).


Jay


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: GUEST,mando-player-91
Date: 16 Apr 12 - 10:10 PM

Woody was a very wise man many people have learned from him, even the people who didn't actually meet him


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: bobad
Date: 06 May 12 - 07:57 AM

A Life Magazine photo essay of Woody serenading New Yorkers in 1943 â€" "in bars, on the stoops of brownstones, on the subway."

Woody in New York 1943


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 02 Jun 12 - 03:25 PM

Ross Altman has a review of the Rounder My Dusty Road boxed set at Folkworks.org.

This, in Ross's way, is more than a review, with musings on Woody's creative output:
He lived to be 55, but for all intents and purposes his creative life lasted roughly 10 years, from the age of 27, when he was first recorded by Alan Lomax for the Library of Congress, to 38, when he was first admitted to Brooklyn State Hospital for the genetic illness that killed his mother.

In those eleven years he wrote—at first estimated as 1000 songs—now more likely to have been three thousand.

About the set he says,
My Dusty Road is a testament to an artist who never much cared about expressing his feelings; what he cared about was to tell a good story, to communicate an idea, to document a time and place and event with all the detail he could pack into 17 verses, as he did with The Ballad of Tom Joad, eliciting a mock-angry letter from John Steinbeck, who told him, "F—k you; you told the story of the Joad family in one song that took me 250 pages to write."

But what makes this collection so extraordinary, as Arlo Guthrie told a recent audience at The Grammy Museum, is its sound quality, often making available for the first time the actual keys that Woody sang in.
...
And now Rounder Records has released their buried treasures of 54 extraordinary performances by Guthrie in his prime, ten years before his hand coordination and vocal timbre was ravaged by the onset of Huntington's Disease; it's like finding the lost library of Alexandria and making it public once again. To me, it's like unearthing the Dead Sea Scrolls.
...
Rounder has truly performed a public service, bringing America's greatest folk singer the scholarship he deserves. The liner notes are by Prof. Ed Cray and Rounder's co-founder Bill Nowlin.
...
This Rounder Records tribute to Woody, My Dusty Road, was made for you and me.


~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Owen Woodson
Date: 03 Jun 12 - 05:58 AM

I caught Nora Guthrie's one woman talk on Woody a few nights ago. The question came up as to whether Woody and Steinbeck ever met. She didn't know, and I can't recall anything in any of the writings on Guthrie which could act as a clue.

Would anyone have anything indubitable which would settle the question one way or the other?


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Stringsinger
Date: 03 Jun 12 - 08:04 PM

There are two books that accurately depict Woody. "Woody, Cisco and Me" by Jim Longhi
and "Ramblin' Man" by Ed Cray. These guys actually knew Woody, as did I.

When you mythologize someone, a lot of the facts get bowdlerized and hoked up.

My remembrance of Woody is Topanga Canyon, 1952 or so when he ran off with Aneke Marshall. They went to Florida in Jack Elliott's "jaloopy", a treacherous vehicle if there ever was one. The clutch was operated by a rope.

Woody was a complicated man, not given to social amenities as we know them.

He would rather play music than talk politics.

He said what he had to in his songs and writings.

He taught me to play harmonica. I was honored to be called his "pickin' buddy" in his letter to Lee Hays.

He was an honest guy and said what was on his mind, often eloquently.

He never wasted words and was a great editor.

You could learn from him what the history books leave out.


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Mark Ross
Date: 03 Jun 12 - 09:59 PM

Owen Woodson, I think that Woody and Steinbeck did know each other in California from what I've read. Steinbeck wrote an introduction to HARD HITTING SONGS FOR HARD HIT PEOPLE. He also reportedly said when Woody wrote TOM JOAD, "That book (Grapes of Wrath) took two years of my life. It took me 3 chapters to get the Joads from Oklahoma to California, and that SOB did it in two lines!"

Just looked up Ed Crays' bio of Woody RAMBLIN' MAN on Google books, and it appears that Woody and Steinbeck were not only acquainted with each other, but were also drinking buddies. Check out the book for yourself;


RAMBLIN' MAN by Ed Cray

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 04 Jun 12 - 01:51 PM

Woody Guthrie Centennial: This Land Is Still His Land, The iconic songwriter's lyrics still resonate in America today, especially when time is taken to listen to the lesser known verses.

An article illustrated with 3 YouTube videos on the origins and continuing role of "This Land is Your Land", by Andrew Cohen at The Atlantic online.

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Owen Woodson
Date: 05 Jun 12 - 06:14 AM

Mark, you are quite right. At any rate I've just dug Ramblin' Man off my shelf (which I should have done before starting this conversation) and thumbed through the index. There's enough in there to indicate that they did meet. In fact Steinbeck tried to have Guthrie hired as music advisor during the filming of the Grapes of Wrath.


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 13 Jun 12 - 02:13 PM

Woody Guthrie Birthday Bash Maine (Mudcat thread)

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: Woody at 100
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 24 Jun 12 - 12:50 PM

The new Smithsonian-Folkways set was mentioned in an article above, here's the opener to a thread started on it:

Subject: Woody at 100 - Smithsonian Folkways
From: Thomas Stern - PM
Date: 23 Jun 12 - 01:50 PM

This set is now available. Magnificent book accompanying the CD's.
Congratulations to Jeff Place &.
Contains 4 hitherto unknown recordings from the late 30's, other
previously unreleased material, as well as the classic recordings.

Woody at 100 - Smithsonian Folkways

http://www.folkways.si.edu/albumdetails.aspx?itemid=3367

Best wishes, Thomas.


~ Becky in Tucson


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