The American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress
presents the Benjamin Botkin Folklife Lecture Series
AN ACQUISITIONS & PRESENTATION PROJECT
March 29, 2012 Event Flyer
My Father, My Partner
Presented by Nora Guthrie
For the last twenty years, Nora Guthrie has worked with her father's collection to support ongoing research and to create new works from the vast legacy he left behind. In this program, she will recount her early recollections of family life (which include family gatherings and hootenannies with musicians close to the family), Woody's hospitalization with Huntington's Disease, her recognition of her father's growing mythology among artists in the 1960s folk music revival, and the gradual transition of her relationship with Woody into one of professional partnership. Her thoughts on Woody's political, social, and spiritual teachings, and how they come into play in today’s world, will be part of the conversation.
Nora Guthrie, Woody Guthrie's daughter, is the Director of the Guthrie Archives, and President of Woody Guthrie Foundation and Woody Guthrie Publications, Inc. She develops projects that bring Woody Guthrie's vast, often unknown, cultural and creative legacy to life. Her groundbreaking pairing of Woody's unpublished lyrics with music by contemporary artists has expanded Woody’s iconic image, forever changing how we know him. Nora’s collaborative projects have resulted in the release and publication of over a hundred fifty new lyrics and artworks in only the last twenty years, pioneering the revitalization of Woody Guthrie’s expansive legacy.
In 1996, Nora Guthrie co-produced the first Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame Guthrie tribute concert with performers Pete Seeger, Tim Robbins, Billy Bragg, Country Joe McDonald, Indigo Girls, Ani DiFranco and Bruce Springsteen among others, and co-curated the first major exhibition on Guthrie for the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Series, which toured at major museums throughout the country for three years. Nora was executive producer of Billy Bragg and Wilco's Grammy-nominated Mermaid Avenue multi-disc sessions, which premiered the collaboration of Woody's unpublished lyrics with contemporary artists.
Since 1998, Nora has released many albums that use Woody's lyrics; Daddy O Daddy, Ticky Tock, Happy Joyous Hanuka, Grammy Award winner Wonder Wheel, Grammy Award winner The Live Wire, The Works, Note of Hope, and most recently, New Multitudes. She was a co-editor of the book Woody Guthrie Artworks (Rizzoli, 2005) and contributor to Kathy Jakobsen's This Land Is Your Land (Little, Brown & Co, 1998) and New Baby Train (2004).
Currently, in 2012, Nora is co-producing, along with the GRAMMY Museum, a year-long tribute to her father, in his centennial year. Celebration events include educational conferences, a touring exhibit and star-studded concerts, which follow Woody's road from Oklahoma to New York and culminate at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC.
The American Folklife Center is home to a number of important collections relating to Woody Guthrie, including original correspondence, artworks, and recordings by Woody; recordings of Woody's brother and sister-in-law; a rare 1961 tape of Bob Dylan performing Woody Guthrie songs; an NBC radio recording of Guthrie acting as announcer for a performance by Lead Belly; a CBS promotional photo of Woody with Burl Ives; original manuscripts of essays and song lyrics by Woody; and many more items. Please visit the Folklife Reading Room in the Library's Thomas Jefferson Building to conduct further research on Woody Guthrie.
The American Folklife Center was created by Congress in 1976 and placed at the Library of Congress to "preserve and present American Folklife" through programs of research, documentation, archival preservation, reference service, live performance, exhibition, public programs, and training. The Center includes the American Folklife Center Archive of folk culture, which was established in 1928 and is now one of the largest collections of ethnographic material from the United States and around the world. Please visit our web site.