Sam Misner - Last Thoughts On Woody Guthrie
In memory of Woody Guthrie (born July 14, 1912 in Okemah, OK – died October 3, 1967 in New York City, NY).
One of the earliest and biggest influences on the very young Bob Dylan was Woody Guthrie. He listened, read, borrowed tunes, imitated, swallowed anything and everything related to Woody and he even went to visit him regularly at New Jersey’s Greystone Park Center where Woody was hospitalized, suffering from Huntington’s Disease.
By way of short introduction here’s a few paragraphs from Woody’s wikipedia page:
Woodrow Wilson Guthrie (July 14, 1912 – October 3, 1967) was an American singer-songwriter who is regarded as one of the most significant figures in American folk music; his songs, including social justice songs, such as "This Land Is Your Land", have inspired several generations both politically and musically.
Songwriters such as Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, Johnny Cash, Bruce Springsteen, Robert Hunter, Harry Chapin, John Mellencamp, Pete Seeger, Andy Irvine, Joe Strummer, Billy Bragg, Jerry Garcia, Jay Farrar, Bob Weir, Jeff Tweedy, Bob Childers, Sammy Walker and Tom Paxton have acknowledged Guthrie as a major influence. He frequently performed with the slogan This machine kills fascists displayed on his guitar.
One of Guthrie's visitors at Greystone Park was the 19-year-old Bob Dylan, who idolized Guthrie. Dylan wrote of Guthrie's repertoire: "The songs themselves were really beyond category. They had the infinite sweep of humanity in them." After learning of Guthrie's whereabouts, Dylan regularly visited him.
Read more here
And also check out the official Woody Guthrie website here
In 1961 Dylan wrote his ‘Song to Woody’ to the tune of Woody’s own ‘1913 Massacre’ to express his debt to this great balladeer. Dave van Ronk’s cover of this song was our Video of the Day on June 30.
This time we chose ‘Last Thoughts on Woody Guthrie’, a long poem written by Dylan, and recited live during his April 12, 1963 performance at New York City's Town Hall.
Here’s Sam Misner rendition of this beautiful poem:
- Video of the day on: 2017-07-14
- Language: English