Musician - 7/93, p.93
"...In this era of Songs R Us, as Raffi wannabes multiply like cells of a virus, it's heartening to discover that Woody Guthrie was making tunes for tots earlier, funnier and better..."
Producer: Moses Asch.
Reissue producers: Anthony Seeger, Matt Walters.
Originally released on Folkways (7015) in 1956 and (7016) in 1985.
Digitally remastered by Joe Gastwirt (Ocean View Digital, West Los Angeles, California).
Personnel: Woody Guthrie (vocals, guitar).
Audio Remasterer: Joe Gastwirt.
Woody Guthrie wrote more songs in his lifetime than most people ever sing. Fortunately, he also found time to turn his attentions towards writing songs especially for parents and children. The lovely thing about these nursery-rhyme-like songs is that they display a refreshing lack of sentimentality, abounding instead with a sense of "let's get loose" fun.
Guthrie clearly understands the special relationship between parent and child. He always keeps the emotional tone honest and in the moment. These songs are never heavy, but the power of these miniatures is far from lightweight. Guthrie accompanies himself on acoustic guitar or, as on the slyly philosophical opener ("Grassy Grass Grass"), with drums on the tabletop. The feeling of spontaneity and exuberance in these stripped-down performances exemplifies the folk stance that not only "anyone can sing" but "everyone should sing."