A Symphonic Celebration for Woody Guthrie's Centennial

Watch Some Unusual Versions of the Songwriter's Tunes

Saturday, July 14, 2012 - 12:00 AM

Woody Guthrie Woody Guthrie (Photograph by Robin Carson/Courtesy of the Woody Guthrie Archives)

All this week the country has been celebrating American icon Woody Guthrie’s 100th birthday, which is Saturday.

A son of the Dust Bowl, Guthrie’s mark on American music is indelible. His folk songs championed the poor and had an unapologetic leftist. As his son Arlo often jokes, he was a “man who spent almost his entire life against being respectable."

Guthrie penned some of the country’s most enduring folk and children's tunes, including “The Grand Coulee Dam,” "Riding in My Car (Car Song)," “Do Re Mi,” “Pastures of Plenty” and, of course, “This Land Is Your Land.”

While most people think of the stripped-down, guitar-and-harmonica versions of Guthrie’s songs, in this video, Arlo Guthrie joins the Boston Pops to perform “This Land Is Your Land.”

In the video below, The Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Band of the United States Air Force Reserve perform a spirited “This Land is Your Land.”

And this coming September, the Colorado Symphony Orchestra will record David Amram’s Symphonic Variations of a Song By Woody Guthrie, commissioned by the Woody Guthrie Publications. Hear a snipet performed by the Pioneer Valley Symphony Orchestra of Greenfield, Mass., with Paul Phillips conducting.

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Comments [1]

A.W.PERELMAN from SEATTLE WA

NOW, I DON'T LIKE OR USUALLY WRITE ANYTHING FOR FREE,OR STICK MY 2 CENTS IN,
BUT HERE IS THE 2ND TIME I'VE FOUND MY SELF DOING IT IN TEN MINUTES..WELL.
AS INSPIRATIONS GO THE MAN WAS AN AMERICAN DOWN TO HIS KNOBBY KNEES;NO ONE
EXCEPT BOB DILLON IN THE EARLY 60'S HAS EVEN COME CLOSE TO TOUCHING THE WELLSPRING OF THE COMMON MAN OR WOMAN IN THIS COUNTRY.WITH RESPECT RESERVED
FOR FEW; I SALUTE HIM, AND HOPE HE WILL ALWAYS BE REMEMBERED WARMLY.

Jul. 14 2012 05:11 AM

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