Ramblin’ Jack Elliot to Headline Santa Rosa Guthrie Centennial
Santa Rosa, CA, June 6, 2012 –
For over five years, a young Ramblin’ Jack Elliott stuck to Woody Guthrie like rust on a boxcar, becoming so proficient at his style that America’s most famous ballad writer remarked, “Jack sounds more like me than I do.” (He would soon teach Woody’s tricks to a young Bob Dylan.) Fast forward to July 29th, 2012: Ramblin’ Jack, having forged a unique legacy of his own, takes the stage at This Train: A Woody Guthrie 100th Birthday Jubilee – a rare living link to the legendary author of “This Land Is Your Land.”
Ramblin’ Jack is the capper to this free day of fun and inspiration in Santa Rosa’s Railroad Square, which features two stages of music and speakers, a 1930’s-themed Pastures of Plenty Kids’ Area, a Woody Guthrie exhibit, craft vendors, non-profit booths, food and beer.
“We are thrilled to be able to bring Ramblin’ Jack Elliott to Santa Rosa – he is a legend in his own right, and one of the last living links to America’s greatest troubadour. To have him headline Woody’s 100th Birthday Jubilee is a dream come true,” said Dale Geist, of Rockin’ Heart Productions, one of the festival’s promoters.
“Jack really brings credibility to This Train,” agrees Josh Windmiller, of North Bay Hootenanny, the festival’s other promoter. “But he’s just the icing on the cake: we’ve got a whole day of the Woody vibe: music, speakers, kids’ area, exhibits, merchants, Dust Bowl costumes – for free!”
Woody’s message has never been more timely. The Dust Bowl Troubadour wrote and sang about hard times, when working people were desperate for jobs, banks were foreclosing homes at an alarming rate, migrant farm workers labored under tough conditions, and there was a popular outcry for sweeping reforms in finance and politics. Sound familiar?
“’This Land is Your Land’ was Woody saying, ‘America is yours and mine – we need to remember that,’” said Ric Garcia, Director of the Graton Day Labor Center, the event’s beneficiary. “He wrote so many immortal songs – ‘Roll On Columbia,’ ‘Oklahoma Hills,’ ‘Reuben James,’ – but the ones that really resonate with me are the ones that still speak to the struggles of workers: ‘So Long, It’s Been Good to Know Yuh,’ ‘I Ain’t Got No Home,’ ‘(If You Ain’t Got the) Do Re Mi,’ ‘Pastures of Plenty,’ ‘Deportees,’ and so many more. In times like these, I can’t think of a better message to spread than Woody Guthrie’s.”
This Train will also showcase the Bay Area’s vibrant folk/Americana scene, including well-known Chicano musician-activist Francisco Herrera, acclaimed singer-songwriter David Luning, high-energy Americana band The Easy Leaves, and many more. A “Pastures of Plenty” family area, an exhibit of photos of and drawings by Woody himself (provided by the Woody Guthrie Family/Guthrie Publications), food and drink, craft vendors, and non-profit booths round out the offerings. There will even be an honest-to-goodness soapbox for anyone who wants to get up and say their piece.
“Come dressed in your Dust Bowl Best!,” says Windmiller.
For more information, go to facebook.com/this.train.jubilee
About This Train
This Train: A Woody Guthrie 100th Birthday Jubilee is a co-production of Rockin’ Heart Productions and North Bay Hootenanny. It is sponsored by KRSH, in cooperation with The Woody Guthrie Centennial, and benefits the Graton Day Labor Center.
Rockin’ Heart Productions connects folks with the roots of American music by putting on shows, publishing, and teaching. We are best known for the annual Cur-ville Dog Days Fest in Kenwood, CA.
The North Bay Hootenanny promotes live music by supporting local folk/Americana artists, providing environments where musicians can learn songs and techniques, and encouraging touring acts to perform in the North Bay.
The KRSH 95.9 is Wine Country Radio’s flagship, heritage FM radio. The music we play is Americana at its best, and we are strongly committed to our community in Sonoma County. For more information, visit www.krsh.com.
The Woody Guthrie Centennial is a partnership between the GRAMMY Museum and the Guthrie Family / Woody Guthrie Publications. We support a host of concerts, programs, and events to celebrate Guthrie’s life. For more information, visit www.woody100.com.
The Graton Day Labor Center (Centro Laboral de Graton): OUR MISSION – To advance and protect the human, labor and civil rights of day laborers, domestic workers and their families by promoting participatory democratic leadership and worker solidarity, in order to develop greater opportunities for employment, health, education and civic participation. More at www.gratondaylabor.org