Having had the God-given privilege to stand beside Pete both in performance and in conversation—engaged in Lincoln's team of rivals, the Peekskill riots of '49, his cherished River Town Kids—listening to this wondrous 2CD set is like having the great man riding shotgun in your car, or filling your listening room up with recollections and stories of his dear friend, Woodrow Wilson Guthrie.
By his own humble admission, Pete's "big, big education about America" began in 1940 when Seeger, then 21, met Woody, then 26, backstage of what was to become the first of many a benefit concert the two great spirits would perform. With these often humorous, always poignant recollections, Pete tells firsthand how they witnessed America's emerging greatness, and how they held out the hope that that greatness would sustain.
Celebrating Woody's centennial, disc one has Pete telling about Guthrie working out This Land Is Your Land, Do Re Mi, and Union Maid. He recalls learning to sing in saloons, singing for the unions, and how the keeping up on the swirling currents of history kept them, if not financially rewarded, then certainly vital and contemporary. Disc two continues with the Weavers, McCarthy's blacklist, and sadly, the Huntington's disease which took Woody's his life in 1967 at the age of 55. Interspersed with these fond remembrances, are Guthrie songs featuring son Arlo, producer and archivist David Bernz, Amy Fradon, The Vanaver Caravan, Woody, Cisco Houston, and The Almanacs among others.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2012, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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