More than 40 years after his death, Woody Guthrie remains one of folk’s most iconic and influential musicians, and this 50-song double-disc set is an ideal primer thanks to the inclusion of Muleskinner Blues, Buffalo Gals and House Of The Rising Sun. Guthrie frequently employed existing tunes to accompany his lyrics but was also a great songwriter in his own right, and this album is a nice mixture of familiar and obscure material, all of it worthy of attention.
Trinity Mirror, September 08
A two-CD package containing 50 songs, all recorded during the Second World War years of 1941 to 1945, by legendary singer-songwriter Woody Guthrie, who wrote and sang about issues he believed in, and about life in his native America.
They range from tales of the Great Depression to his support for gangster Pretty Boy Floyd, from his protest songs against the chain gangs to see the USA go from the steam age to the nuclear age. These are raw, traditional folk songs, virtally all written by Guthrie, including This Land Is Your Land, The House Of The Rising Sun, John Henry, Cumberland Gap and Worried Man Blues.
Guthrie died in 1967 but his influence on popular music has been immense, inspiring the likes of Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Van Morrison, Billy Bragg, Lonnie Donegan, The Byrds, Donovan and Richie Havens.