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My Name Is New York: Ramblin' Around Woody Guthrie's Town
Synopses & Reviews
My name is New York, I’m a brick on a brick
I’m a hundred folks running, and ten dying sick
I’m a saint, I’m a sinner, a whore and her pimp
Your ocean’s the mirror I look in to primp.
—“My Name Is New York,” Woody Guthrie
Dust bowl troubadour Woody Guthrie first arrived in New York City on February 16, 1940. Although he continued to ramble, for 27 years— from 1940 until his death in 1967—New York was the city he called home and always returned to.
For the first time, this wonderful New York story comes to life with historical photos, documents, and previously unpublished lyrics from the Woody Guthrie Archives. Highlighting 19 significant locations, this little guide provides an expansive yet intimate portrait of Woody Guthrie's NYC life. We invite you to walk the streets, ride the buses and subways, or sit down and relax on some of the stoops, park benches, or beaches where Woody Guthrie did—always strumming away on his guitar, always working on a new song.
Many of Woody's most popular songs were written in apartments, lofts, and other locations around "New York Town." That song, along with "Jesus Christ," "Vigilante Man," "Hard Travelin'," "Tom Joad," "Reuben James," "All You Fascists Bound to Lose," and "1913 Massacre," are among the more than 600 he composed in the Big Apple. Most surprisingly, his iconic "This Land Is Your Land," was written at a small rooming house on 43rd Street and Sixth Avenue, on February 23, 1940 within a few days of his arrival. With new friends Pete Seeger, Lead Belly, Sonny Terry, and Brownie McGhee and the Almanac Singers he was at the center of a new movement—introducing and popularizing rural, roots, topical, and protest music to modern, urban audiences. For more information visit http://www.MyNameIsNY.com/
About the Author
Nora Guthrie, Woody Guthrie’s daughter, is the Director of the Guthrie Archives and Woody Guthrie Publications, Inc. She develops projects that bring Woody Guthrie’s vast cultural and, often unknown, creative legacy to the public. She was executive producer of the Billy Bragg/Wilco Grammy-nominated recordings “Mermaid Avenue” and “Mermaid Avenue Vol. II.” She co-produced the first Rock n Roll Hall of Fame Guthrie tribute in Cleveland, with performer Bruce Springsteen among others, and curated the first major exhibition on Guthrie for the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service which toured at major museums throughout the country. She was a contributor to the books Woody Guthrie Artworks (Rizzoli, 2005), and Kathy Jakobsons’ This Land Is Your Land (Little, Brown & Co, 1998). She has a number of musical projects in the works, including new recordings with Jay Farrar Band, and bassist Rob Wasserman.
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