A celebration by friends, family, and scholars of the life and achievements of America's foremost folk singer.
For the first ever American Music Masters event sponsored by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, musicians and folkies came together to salute the life and legacy of Woody Guthrie, America's folk troubadour. With contributions from Guthrie's son Arlo and his longtime friends Pete Seeger and Harold Leventhal, and with new appreciations and insights provided by scholars and critics, Hard Travelin' continues that celebration, offering a new understanding of Guthrie's contribution to America's music and culture. It is illustrated with photographs and drawings, many never-before-seen, from the Woody Guthrie Archives.
Guthrie's songs — such as "This Land Is Your Land," "Pretty Boy Floyd," or "Roll on Columbia" — are still known and sung by many Americans, while the story of his life has taken on a mythic cast — the modern troubadour, the hobo balladeer and union supporter, the wandering folk singer who heard and wrote in the voice of the people. Guthrie's influence is felt not only whenever someone sings one of his songs, but any time a modern folk group or rocker sings a protest song or joins a social or political cause.
In this book, Guthrie's family and friends offer personal and often poignant recollections of his life. Noted writers such as Dave Marsh, David Shumway, and Robert Cantwell shed new light on the Guthrie legacy, including an expanded appreciation of his impact on rock and roll, through such figures as Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen. They also assess Guthrie's place in the political and social movements of his time, especially his support for unions and for the communist party; his attitudes toward race; and the little-studied topic of his visual art, the often very personal drawings, doodles, sketches, and paintings that he produced throughout his life. The book concludes with a valuable biblio/discography.
List of Illustrations
Preface by Robert Santelli
Editor's Note by Emily Davidsom
I. Ramblin' Road
Way Down Yonder in the Indian Nation: Woodie Guthrie, An American Troubadour by Mary Katherine Aldin
Remembering Woodie by Harold Leventhal with Robert Santelli
Hobo's Lullaby by Pete Seeger with Robert Santelli
Going Back to Coney Island by Arlo Guthrie
II. Pastures of Plenty
Beyond Folk: Woody Guthrie's Impact on Rock and Roll by Robert Santelli
Woodie Guthrie's Recorded Legacy by Jeff Place
Democratic Visions, Democratic Voices: Woody as Writer by Craig Werner
Classic in Its Own Little Way: The Art of Woody Guthrie by Ellen G. Landau
III. This Land is Your Land
Woody Guthrie's American Century by Charles F. McGovern
Your Land: The Lost Legacy of Woody Guthrie by David R. Shumway
Woody the Red? By Ronald D. Cohen
Fanfare for the Little Guy by Robert Cantwell
Deportees: Woody Guthrie's Unfinished Business by David Marsh
Biblio/Discography by Guy Logsdon
Both editors hold positions at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, where ROBERT SANTELLI is Director of Education and EMILY DAVIDSON is Education Program Coordinator.
"[An] excellent collection . . . Undergraduates and general readers will enjoy and benefit from the balance of personal and academic commentaries. Specialists will particularly appreciate Guy Logsdon's extensive bibliography and discography."~Choice
""This book is further evidence that Woody Guthrie's words and spirit endure and thrive as a major American cultural force.""~Joe Klein, Newsweek and author of Woody Guthrie: A Life
"Woody had faults, but he was also an extraordinarily thoughtful and original talent. He had the genius of simplicity. When I first heard 'This Land Is Your Land' I didn't perceieve how famous it would become. I thought to myself, 'That song is just too simple.' I actually believed it was one of Woody's lesser efforts. Shows you how wrong you can be . . . My guess is that if Woody stayed healthy, over the years he would have made up maybe twenty versions of 'So Long' because of its great chorus. He might have had a Dustbowl version, a Joe McCarthy version, a Civil Rights version, a Vietnam version. He might even have had a Romald Reagan or a Bill Clinton version. Who knows?"~Pete Seeger