HOME | BIOGRAPHY | STORE | LYRICS | EDUCATIONAL CURRICULUM | PROGRAM & EXHIBITS | NEWS | LICENSING | MAILING LIST | CONTACT


 

NORA GUTHRIE


PRESIDENT | Woody Guthrie Publications, Inc.
PRESIDENT | Woody Guthrie Foundation
FOUNDER | Woody Guthrie Archives


Nora Guthrie graduated from NYU Tisch School of the Arts in 1971. Following a career in modern dance Nora began working with her father’s materials in 1992.

Based on her intimate connection to her father’s ideas and ideals, Nora brings a refreshing interpretation of his work and a new understanding of his legacy.

In 1994, Nora co-founded the Woody Guthrie Archives with Harold Leventhal and archivist Jorge Arevalo.  In addition to managing the Archives and preserving her father’s personal materials and original creative works, Ms. Guthrie develops and produces new projects which continue to expand Woody Guthrie's cultural legacy.

Her first project, in 1992, was the publication of a lost songbook of Woody’s original lyrics and illustrations, Woody’s 20 Grow Big Songs. Nora co-produced the accompanying album with her brother Arlo Guthrie, which received a Grammy nomination.

In 1996, Ms. Guthrie co-produced the first ever Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum Tribute series honoring Woody Guthrie.  Main events consisted of a scholarly symposium held at Case Western Reserve University and a tribute concert in Cleveland’s famed Severance Hall.  Among the many artists that participated in the tribute weekend were; Bruce Springsteen, Jorma Kaukonen, Indigo Girls, Billy Bragg, Joe Ely, David Pirner, Tim Robbins, Alejandro Escovedo, Ani DiFranco and Arlo Guthrie and many others.  Ani DiFranco produced the live CD Til We Outnumber ‘Em, which was released on her label Righteous Babe Records.

In 1998, Ms. Guthrie was executive producer of the ground breaking Billy Bragg/Wilco collaboration Mermaid Avenue and Mermaid Avenue Volume II.  These landmark albums, creating new music to previously unknown Guthrie lyrics, received critical acclaim and Grammy nominations in 1999 and 2001 respectively.

In 1998 Nora worked with folk artist Kathy Jakobsen to create the children’s book This Land is Your Land which illustrates and highlights Guthrie’s classic lyric.  Now in its third printing, This Land has won numerous awards and literary praise.

Additionally, in 1998 Ms. Guthrie curated the first major exhibit This Land Is Your Land: The Life and Legacy of Woody Guthrie in collaboration with the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service (SITES).  The exhibit opened in May 2000 at the Gene Autry Museum of Western Heritage in Los Angeles and toured for three years at major museums throughout the country, including the Museum of the City of New York.  This extensive exhibit presented previously unseen original Guthrie materials including notebooks and diaries, artworks, lyrics, photographs, instruments and memorabilia giving a rare and intimate look into the life and legacy of Woody Guthrie.

In 2003, Nora co-produced a month-long celebration of Woody’s life and legacy in Nashville, TN.  Programs included public school events, lectures, gallery exhibits, film screenings, concerts, and an exhibit at Nashville’s Songwriters Hall of Fame.  The month-long tribute culminated with Nashville Sings Woody! a concert held at the Ryman Auditorium featuring local and international musicians.  Among the many performers paying tribute were Marty Stewart, Guy Clark, Nanci Griffith, Janis Ian, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, Tim O’Brien, Alison Brown, Beth Nielsen Chapman, Corey Harris, Old Crow Medicine Show, and Arlo Guthrie.

In 2003, Nora collaborated with Berlin composer and performer, Hans-Eckardt Wenzel on the innovative Ticky Tock.  Released in both English and German languages, this CD continued to explore new avenues for Woody’s lyrics and ideas. Ticky Tock received The German Record Critics' Award in 2003.

Taking yet another unusual turn, Ms. Guthrie worked with the world renowned klezmer band The Klezmatics, exploring Woody Guthrie’s Jewish themed lyrics.  Members of the Klezmatics composed music for Woody’s Hanuka lyrics for Happy Joyous Hanukkah, their 2004 holiday CD release.  Wonder Wheel, a 2006 release focused on Woody’s NYC experience, won a 2007 Grammy for Best World Music Album.  Continuing the exploration of this unique collaboration, Holy Ground: Woody Guthrie’s Yiddish Connection, is our multi-media lecture program which Nora is currently presenting.

Woody Guthrie ArtWorks, co-edited and designed by Steven Brower, was Nora’s 2007 book release, one that holds a special place in her heart as well as being a significant aspect of her father’s legacy.  For decades Guthrie’s vast trove of artwork has remained virtually unknown and unexplored.  With art, his long-time muse, this new publication highlights Woody Guthrie as a visual artist.

In 2008, Nora released another new album with folk rock singer/songwriter, Jonatha Brooke.  The Works delved into Woody’s love songs and was the first full album collaboration with a female singer/songwriter.

In 2011, Note of Hope, a CD almost a decade in the making was released.  This special project was spearheaded by Rob Wasserman and Nora Guthrie, exploring Woody Guthrie’s poetry and prose.  Special guests on the project included: Jackson Browne, Lou Reed, Tom Morello, Ani DiFranco, Studs Terkel, Michael Franti, Chris Whitley, Conner Oberst, Madeleine Peyroux, and Nellie McKay.

Following on the heels of Note of Hope, another original collaborative project was released.  New Multitudes featuring artists: Jay Farrar (Sun Volt), Jim James (My Morning Jacket), Anders Parker, and Will Johnson

2012 marked Woody’s 100th birthday! The year-long celebrations, co-produced by Nora and Bob Santelli, Executive Director of the GRAMMY Museum Foundation, included; educational conferences, exhibits, adult and elementary school outreach programs & presentations, and concerts that followed Woody’s road from Oklahoma through California and on to New York City.  The year culminated with an all-star concert at the Kennedy Center on Oct. 14, 2012.  Just released June 18, 2013 released to CD & DVD on Sony Legacy Records and on premiered on PBS, this star-studded tribute concert featured performances by John Mellencamp, Jackson Browne, Rosanne Cash, Judy Collins, Ani DiFranco, Tom Morello, the Del McCoury Band, Sweet Honey In The Rock, and Ramblin’ Jack Elliott and among others.

In 2013, Nora in collaboration with Douglas Brinkley and Johnny Depp, released House of Earth, a previously unpublished completed manuscript Woody wrote in 1947. House of Earth, a New York Times Best Seller, tells the story of an expectant couple who are desperately surviving the Dust Bowl and the depression in the Texas Panhandle and dreaming of a better future where they will own their own home, an adobe home, a house made of earth.

Nora is currently collaborating with bluegrass icon Del McCoury on a new album focusing on Woody’s country western styled lyrics. The world premiere of this work took place on June 29, 2013 at Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts, located in Katonah, NY.

Over the years, Nora has created many surprising collaborations and inspired many new recordings of both known and unknown Guthrie lyrics.  The long list of richly diverse artists now include; Alison Krauss + Union Station, Janis Ian, Jimmy LaFave, Ellis Paul, John McCutcheon, Slaid Cleaves, Eliza Gilkyson, James Talley, Red Dirt Rangers, Sarah Lee Guthrie & Johnny Irion, Taj Mahal, Cissy Houston, Kim Wilson, Corey Harris, Joel Rafael, Lila Downs, Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Dropkick Murphy’s, Anti-Flag, Blackfire, Zombie-Joe, and international stars John Mellencamp, Jackson Browne, and Joe Perry.


COMPLETE PROJECT LISTING:

Date
Event / Release
Type of Event / Release
Artist / Author
Nora Guthrie's Title
1992 Woody Guthrie's 20 Grow Big Songs Songbook & CD Guthrie Family Producer
1996 Hard Travelin': The Life & Legacy of Woody Guthrie Concert Various Artists

Producer

1997 This Land Is Your Land Animated Video Woody Guthrie & Arlo Guthrie Executive Producer
1997 This Land Is Your Land Animated Video Soundtrack Woody Guthrie & Arlo Guthrie Executive Producer
1998 Mermaid Avenue CD Billy Bragg & Wilco Executive Producer
1999 - 2002 This Land Is Your Land: The Life and Legacy of Woody Guthrie Smithsonian Institute Touring Exhibit Woody Guthrie Co-curator
1999 Man In The Sand Video Billy Bragg  
2000 Howdi Do Children's Book Vladimir Radunsky Creative Consultant
2000 Bling Blang Children's Book Vladimir Radunsky Creative Consultant
2001 My Dolly Children's Book Vladimir Radunsky Creative Consultant
2001 Daddy O Daddy CD Various Artists  
2001 Poet Of The People Book Bonnie Christensen Creative Consultant
2002 This Land Is Your Land Children's Book Kathy Jakobsen Creative Consultant
2002 There Ain't Nobody That Can Sing Like Me Book Elizabeth Partridge Creative Consultant
2003 Nashville Sings Woody Concert Various Artists

Executive Producer

2003 Ticky Tock CD Hans-Eckardt Wenzel Executive Producer
2004 Ramblin' Man Book Ed Cray Creative Consultant
2004 New Baby Train Children's Book Marla Frazee Creative Consultant
2005 This Machine Kills Fascists DVD Steve Gammond Creative Consultant
2005 I Ain't Got No Home PBS Documentary Peter Frumkin  
2005 Woody Guthrie ArtWorks Artbook Woody Guthrie Editor
2006 Wonder Wheel CD The Klezmatics Executive Producer
2006 Happy Joyous Hanukkah CD The Klezmatics Executive Producer
2007 The Works CD Jonatha Brooke Executive Producer
1998 - present Pastures of Plenty show Theatrical Performance Vanaver Caravan Creative Consultant
2003 - present Ribbon of Highway, Endless Skyway Theatrical Performance Jimmy LaFave and Various Artists Creative Consultant
2008 Ribbon of Highway, Endless Skyway CD Jimmy LaFave and Various Artists Executive Producer
2010

The Live Wire: Woody Guthrie in Performance 1949

Book & CD Woody & Marjorie Guthrie Executive Producer
2011 Note of Hope CD Rob Wasserman and Friends Producer
2012 New Multitudes CD Jay Farrar, Jim James, and Will Johnson, and Anders Parker Executive Producer
2012 Woody Guthrie's Centennial Celebrations Year long events, exhibits, concerts, and educational programs   Co-producer
2013 Woody Guthrie At 100! Live at the Kennedy Center CD / DVD Various Artists Producer
2013 House of Earth Book Woody Guthrie, Douglas Brinkey, and Johnny Depp Editor
2013 Woody Guthrie Center, Tulsa, OK Museum & Educational Center   Co-curator
2013 Wardy Forty Book Phil Buehler Editor & Publisher

 

HOME | BIOGRAPHY | STORE | LYRICS | EDUCATIONAL CURRICULUM | PROGRAM & EXHIBITS | NEWS | LICENSING | MAILING LIST | CONTACT

This site is maintained by: Woody Guthrie Publications, Inc. | 125-131 E. Main Street, Suite #201 | Mt. Kisco, NY 10549 | T: (914) 241-3844

~ Copyright 2001-2013, Woody Guthrie Publications, Inc. Privacy Policy | Site design by Anna Canoni. ~