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Arlo Guthrie salutes his father, carries on folk tradition
OVERLAND PARK, KAN. – Arlo Guthrie, son of folk icon Woody Guthrie, will bring his Here Comes the Kid show to Johnson County Community College at 7 p.m. on Sunday, March 24.
Tickets, which are $100, $45 and $35, are available through the college box office at 913-469-4445 or online at www.jccc.edu/TheSeries.
Guthrie, known for songs that include This Land is Your Land (written by Woody), will appear at 7 p.m. in the Carlsen Center's Yardley Hall. He will be honoring his father's memory by marking his 100th birthday with stories and tunes from a long list of favorites.
Guthrie, born in 1947, grew up surrounded by musicians and practically lived in the most famous venues of the "folk boom" era. In New York City, he hung out at Gerdes Folk City, The Gaslight and The Bitter End and in Philadelphia he made places like The 2nd Fret and The Main Point his home.
Guthrie witnessed the transition from an earlier generation of ballad singers such as Richard Dyer-Bennet and bluesmen such as Mississippi John Hurt to a new era of singer-songwriters that included Bob Dylan, Jim Croce and Joan Baez. He learned something from everyone and developed his own style as a singer-songwriter and political-social commentator.
Guthrie's career took off in November 1967 with the release of Alice's Restaurant, which was to become an iconic anti-war anthem for the next generation. His father had died a month earlier, after a long battle with Huntington's disease.
Woody Guthrie wrote nearly 3,000 song lyrics, published two novels and authored numerous published and unpublished manuscripts, poems, prose and plays that are housed in the Woody Guthrie Archives in New York.
Guthrie appears to feel a close connection with his fans, judging by his postings on his Facebook page and website.
This is what he posted the day after his wife, Jackie, 68, died of cancer on Oct. 14.
"The sun rose on my world this morning. Jackie stayed with us throughout the night, lingering in our hearts just out of sight but clearly present. She woke me before sunrise in a dream saying that the hour had come when she would need to leave us and be gone before the sun arose. As her words awakened me I walked outside and stood looking over the river talking with her in the predawn twilight we both loved so much. It was our time and for years she brought me coffee as I took photographs of morning on the river...
"Our wonderful guru, Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavati, always reminded us to stay in the moment – no thought of the past or future. The moment is all we really have; the rest is fiction. Jackie and I lived that teaching as best we could and I will continue to be present and accounted for."
The Here Comes the Kid tour is scheduled to continue through May 19.