Friday, August 11, 2006

Arlo still has it...

To Manchester, to see Arlo Guthrie perform. Arlo is a girlhood hero of 'er indoors, and a favourite of mine. He rarely makes it to these shores - the last time we saw him was 1988- so this was a must-see for us.
He was great. Backed by son Abe and grandson (!) plus an excellent pedal steel player, he ran through some of his most well-known songs, and some of his dad's, in fine style. His between song - and sometimes in-song - chat is brilliant. He's wry, clever, witty and self-deprecating; actually, quite a considerable orator. We sang along to the inevitable "Alice's Restaurant" and "This Land is Your Land." We also listened to a newly discovered wire recording of Woody, and were moved by an encore which showcased a new song, lyrics by Woody - apparently there are thousands of songs he never recorded. Two hours without a break - not bad for an old-timer!

5 comments:

dovegreyreader said...

Alice's Restaurant was THE cult record of the sixth form common room and we all had the riff note perfect on our guitars.It was one of the compulsory ones you had to be able to play along with S&G's April Come She Will and Davey Graham's Anjie.
I think we got ourselves at least an organistaion if not a movement!

dovegreyreader said...

organisation...sorry!

Rob Spence said...

Blimey - that was a seriously scary sixth form if you could play like Davy Graham...

dovegreyreader said...

Only the first few bars Rob, don't panic but enough to make everyone think you knew the rest!Scary indeed and much time wasted whizzing up to London to Bunjie's just in case DG should put in an appearance. We were the original 'old folkies'.
Now look out for very local lad made good Seth Lakeman, he's my new hero.

Rob Spence said...

Seth is indeed a find - as is Tim Van Eyken, and Teddy Thompson has stepped deftly into his dad's shoes - not that his dad's vacated them, as it were..
Good to see the folk traditions being constantly reinvigorated by these guys. I remember when it were all fields you know...