Personnel includes: Woody Guthrie, Leadbelly, Cisco Houston.
Personnel: Woody Guthrie (vocals, guitar, fiddle, harmonica); Cisco Houston (guitar).
Liner Note Author: Pete Seeger .
Unknown Contributor Roles: Lead Belly; Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee.
The title WOODY GUTHRIE SINGS FOLK SONGS may seem self-evident, but remember, unlike most folk singers of his generation, Guthrie was known primarily as a songwriter. That makes this collection of traditional folk songs, which was originally released in 1962 (just after Guthrie's death) a somewhat rare item--Guthrie as interpreter, not instigator.
The songs are a varied lot, from "The Rising Sun Blues," a version of the chestnut "House of the Rising Sun"; to story songs like "John Henry," featuring vocals by Cisco Houston; and "The Boll Weevil." Though they were recorded at various points in Guthrie's long and productive career, all 14 tracks are so stylistically assured and thoughtfully performed that they sound like they could have been recorded at one session. In addition to the contributions from Houston, Guthrie's friend and mentor Leadbelly appears on a couple of tracks.