Essentially every American who has listened to the radio or gone to summer camp knows Woody Guthrie's “This Land Is Your Land.” The music of the nation's signature folk singer/songwriter has been recorded by everyone from the Mormon Tabernacle Choir to the Irish rock band U2. Originally blowing out of the Dust Bowl in 1930s Depression-era America, he blended vernacular, rural music and populism to give voice to millions of downtrodden citizens. Guthrie's prolific music, poetry and prose were politically leftist, uniquely patriotic and always inspirational. He joined music with traditional oral history and was central to the folk music revival. His is a complex story filled with frenetic creative energy and a treasure trove of cultural history — as well as personal imperfections and profound family tragedy.
"Woody Guthrie: Ain't Got No Home" on American Masters airs Tuesday, November 13th at 7:00 pm.