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Bound For Glory: Rosanne Cash, Judy Collins, John Mellencamp, Donovan Celebrate Woody Guthrie at 100

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Woody at 100On July 14, 2012, Woody Guthrie would have turned 100 years old.  The Oklahoma-born “Dust Bowl Troubadour” died in 1967, just 55 years of age, but all these many years later, his compositions such as “This Land is Your Land,” “Grand Coulee Dam” and “The Sinking of the Reuben James” are cornerstones of American song.  The folk hero, whose guitar was famously emblazoned with the slogan “This machine kills fascists,” was celebrated last year with Smithsonian Folkways’ impressive 3-CD/hardcover book box set Woody at 100: The Woody Guthrie Centennial.  On June 11 of this year, Legacy Recordings will release a special CD/DVD set which should prove a fine companion to that hefty musical tome.  The October 14, 2012 concert Woody Guthrie at 100! Live at the Kennedy Center found the late songwriter feted by musicians young and old, all of whom were influenced by Guthrie’s captivating folk songs and many of whom have carried on his life’s work of singing for a better life and better country.

The concert’s line-up included politically-minded singer-songwriters decades apart but close in ideals (Jackson Browne, Tom Morello), country music royalty (Rosanne Cash), rockers (John Mellencamp), folk singers (Ramblin’ Jack Elliott), genre-defying vocalists (Judy Collins, Lucinda Williams), psychedelic survivors (Donovan), an a cappella ensemble (Sweet Honey in the Rock) and even a string band (Old Crow Medicine Show).  All showed their great affection for the immortal music of Woodrow Wilson “Woody” Guthrie.

Legacy’s release coincides with the television premiere of Woody Guthrie at 100! Live at the Kennedy Center which will occur on PBS in June.  But the CD/DVD package makes room for eight performances from the Washington, DC show which were excised from the broadcast version of the film: two spoken-word pieces from actor Jeff Daniels, and six musical performances from Old Crow Medicine Show, Rosanne Cash, Jimmy LaFave, Lucinda Williams, Judy Collins and Ramblin’ Jack Elliott.  The CD has nineteen tracks in total, while the DVD boasts 22.

After the jump: we have plenty more details, including pre-order links and track listings for both the CD and DVD portions of the package!

The CD/DVD release includes a 12-page booklet containing rare photographs and a note from Woody’s daughter, Nora Guthrie.  One of his eight children, Nora currently administers the non-profit Woody Guthrie Foundation and Archives, and Woody Guthrie Publications, Inc.  Under her direction, contemporary musicians have often been invited to compose music to Woody’s previously unpublished lyrics. Several of these artists presented their new songs at the concert, including Joel Rafael (“Ramblin’ Reckless Hobo”) and Lucinda Williams (“House of Earth”). 2011’s album Note of Hope included an entire collection of newly-composed songs set to “lost” Guthrie lyrics, and two artists appearing on that LP also performed their songs in concert:  Jackson Browne (“You Know The Night”) and Tom Morello (“Ease My Revolutionary Mind”).

Expect to hear Guthrie favorites, too.  Judy Collins tackles “Pastures of Plenty,” and Donovan offers “Riding in My Car.”  Contemporary folksinger/guitarist/poet Ani DiFranco takes on “Deportee” with Ry Cooder and Dan Gellert.  Rosanne Cash (with her husband John Leventhal) performs two favorites, “I Ain’t Got No Home” and “Pretty Boy Floyd.”  Longtime Guthrie devotee John Mellencamp sings “Do Re Mi,” while bluegrass’ Del McCoury Band joins Tim O’Brien for “So Long, It’s Been Good to Know Yuh” and the instrumental “Woody’s Rag” (his only instrumental composition) with pianist Tony Trischka.  It should come as no surprise that the entire cast closed the concert with “This Train Is Bound For Glory” and the inevitable sing-along of “This Land Is Your Land.”

The DVD bonus material spotlights rare footage of Woody Guthrie himself singing “John Henry,” “Ranger’s Command” and “Greenback Dollar,” as well as spoken pieces by Woody and others that have been illustrated by archival photographs and documentary footage. world like a fast train on a well-oiled track.  The film was produced and directed by four-time Emmy Award-winner Jim Brown, an Emmy Award winner for The Weavers: Wasn’t That A Time! (1981), We Shall Overcome (1989), and Pete Seeger: The Power of Song (2007). No stranger to the world of Woody, his A Vision Shared: A Tribute to Woody Guthrie also received a CD companion from Columbia Records.

You can join in the 100th birthday festivities for Woody Guthrie on June 11 with Live at the Kennedy Center.  It’s available for pre-order at the link below!

Various Artists, Woody Guthrie at 100! Live at the Kennedy Center (Legacy Recordings 88883 72809 2 1, 2013)

CD:

  1. Howdi Do – Old Crow Medicine Show
  2. Union Maid – Old Crow Medicine Show
  3. Ramblin’ Reckless Hobo – Joel Rafael
  4. Hard Travelin’ – Jimmy LaFave
  5. Riding In My Car – Donovan
  6. I Ain’t Got No Home – Rosanne Cash with John Leventhal
  7. Pretty Boy Floyd – Rosanne Cash with John Leventhal
  8. I’ve Got To Know – Sweet Honey In The Rock
  9. House Of Earth – Lucinda Williams
  10. Pastures Of Plenty – Judy Collins
  11. Ease My Revolutionary Mind – Tom Morello
  12. Deportee – Ani DiFranco with Ry Cooder and Dan Gellert
  13. You Know The Night – Jackson Browne
  14. So Long, It’s Been Good To Know Yuh – Del McCoury Band with Tim O’Brien
  15. Woody’s Rag – Del McCoury Band with Tim O’Brien and Tony Trischka
  16. Do Re Mi – John Mellencamp
  17. 1913 Massacre – Ramblin’ Jack Elliott
  18. This Train Is Bound For Glory – All Performers
  19. This Land Is Your Land – All Performers

DVD:

  1. Howdi Do – Old Crow Medicine Show *
  2. Union Maid – Old Crow Medicine Show
  3. This Is Our Country Here – Jeff Daniels *
  4. Ramblin’ Reckless Hobo – Joel Rafael
  5. Hard Travelin’ – Jimmy LaFave *
  6. Riding In My Car – Donovan
  7. I Ain’t Got No Home – Rosanne Cash with John Leventhal *
  8. Pretty Boy Floyd – Rosanne Cash with John Leventhal
  9. I’ve Got To Know – Sweet Honey In The Rock
  10. House Of Earth – Lucinda Williams
  11. Pastures Of Plenty – Judy Collins *
  12. Ease My Revolutionary Mind – Tom Morello
  13. Deportee – Ani DiFranco with Ry Cooder and Dan Gellert
  14. I Hate A Song (spoken word) – Jeff Daniels *
  15. You Know The Night – Jackson Browne
  16. So Long, It’s Been Good To Know Yuh – Del McCoury Band with Tim O’Brien
  17. Woody’s Rag – Del McCoury Band with Tim O’Brien and Tony Trischka *
  18. Do Re Mi – John Mellencamp
  19. 1913 Massacre – Ramblin’ Jack Elliott *
  20. Nora Guthrie (spoken word)
  21. This Train Is Bound For Glory – All Performers
  22. This Land Is Your Land – All Performers

* Bonus track does not appear in televised PBS special

Written by Joe Marchese

May 3, 2013 at 09:38

One Response

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  1. Mr. Zimmerman is glaringly absent.

    Sean Anglum

    May 3, 2013 at 14:33


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