The Woody Guthrie Prize will be given annually to the artist who best exemplifies the spirit and life's work of Woody Guthrie by speaking for the less fortunate through music, film, literature, dance or other art forms and serving as a positive force for social change in America.
The event will include the Woody Guthrie Prize presentation, a one-on-one Q&A with Seeger and GRAMMY Museum Executive Director Bob Santelli, a musical performance by Seeger and Arlo Guthrie and an additional musical performance by Tony Trischka. The prize will be presented by the Woody Guthrie Center in Tulsa, Okla., in conjunction with The GRAMMY Museum.
For more than 70 years as a performer, Seeger has embodied the ideals of folk music – communication, entertainment, social comment, historical continuity and inclusiveness. The songs he has written, and those he has discovered and shared, have helped preserve America's cultural heritage, imprinting adults and children with the sounds, traditions and values of our global past and present. A fearless warrior for social justice and the environment, Seeger's political activism – from the Civil Rights movement and anti-McCarthyism to resistance to fascism and the wars in Vietnam and the Middle East – has become the template for subsequent generations of musicians and ordinary citizens with something to say about the world.
Woodrow "Woody" Wilson Guthrie was born in Okemah, Okla. in 1912 and wrote 3,000 songs in his lifetime. Guthrie's iconic "This Land Is Your Land" has become the unofficial American national anthem. Guthrie also recorded many children's songs and tunes devoted to telling the story of the disenfranchised and working class of his era. He was also an artist, writer, radio show host and activist during the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s.
For additional information on the Woody Guthrie Center, visit http://WoodyGuthrieCenter.org/.
Images (top to bottom), Woody Guthrie; the final award cast in bronze; patina being applied after casting