On just about any night of the week one can find a balladeer strumming away on a LA stage. Tales are told and wry commentary is dealt and the audience is engaged. Maybe it is because the ballads are about love -- they often are -- or social change or both. A ballad is hard to beat.
Regardless of topic, all modern troubadours do doth their caps to one Woody Guthrie, a man who played his guitar and spun out several musical movements while smartly commenting upon what could be better about the way we live (no easy feat, to do both concurrently).
July 14th, 2012 will mark the singer-songwriter's centennial. Several of today's balladeers, and Mr. Guthrie's folk-storyist son Arlo, will gather in LA ahead of that date to pay homage to a man who journeyed down his own final road in 1967.
cr: Robin Carson/Courtesy Woody Guthrie Archives
The Woody Guthrie Centennial Celebration strums from Monday, April 9 through Saturday, April 14. Highlights included "The Great and Crowded City: Woody Guthrie's Los Angeles." That's at the University of Southern California. And a Club Nokia show on that same date will feature David Crosby, Graham Nash, John Doe, Kris Kristofferson and a host of other headliners in the fields of folk, country, and envelope-testing muscianship.
Arlo Guthrie is also set to talk and play ahead of the celebration at the Grammy Museum. "Alice's Restaurant" live? Oh yeah. We want to hear it.
Tickets for the Woody Guthrie week go on sale on Saturday, March 17.