For the first time, fans and music lovers everywhere can listen to a live concert recording of Woody Guthrie! The Woody Guthrie Foundation, under license to Woody Guthrie Publications Inc, released this never-before-heard Guthrie concert which took place in December, 1949 at the YM-YWHA's Fuld Hall in Newark, New Jersey.


With the help of many talented recording engineers, the Foundation painstakingly transferred this rare live performance from a delicate wire recording to digital audio, and, with state-of-the-art technology, restored it to near-perfection.



1. Intro: How much? How long? (15:02)*
2. Black Diamond (4:51)
3. I was there and the dust was there (6:56)
4. The Great Dust Storm (3:35)
5. Folk singers and dancers (5:28)
6. Talking Dust Bowl Blues (2:16)
7. Tom Joad (6:17)
8. Columbia River (1:47)
9. Pastures of Plenty (2:39)
10. Grand Coulee Dam (3:33)
11. Told by Mother Bloor (1:42)
12. 1913 Massacre (4:32)
13. Quit sending your inspectors (2:33)
14. Goodbye Centralia (3:11)
15. A cowboy of some kind (1:20)
16. Dead or Alive (3:42)
17. Jesus Christ has come! (1:35)
18. Jesus Christ (3:46)

*All italicized tracks are spoken word.
Total Running Time 74:54




In 2001, Paul Braverman sent a small package containing 2 spools of wire recordings to the Woody Guthrie Archives in New York City. He had discovered them while cleaning out his closet. He had made the recordings himself while a student at Rutgers University, using a small wire recorder which was briefly used in the late 1940s. He was a recording hobbyist and often recorded events and programs held by the Y in the late 40s and early 50s.

Nora Guthrie, President of the Woody Guthrie Foundation and Woody's daughter, and Jorge Arevalo Mateus, Curator of the Woody Guthrie Archives, first had the opportunity to hear the wires in 2002 at Art Shifrin's home studio in Queens, NY. Art had hand-built the only known wire recording transfer device available. At this point, they had no idea what was on the wire, but were absolutely thrilled to discover that the recordings contained a never before heard, complete live performance given by Woody Guthrie. His wife, Marjorie Mazia, was the dance teacher at the Y, and at this event she acted as moderator for the program. The evening was a cultural event meant to introduce Woody Guthrie's songs to this small group of adults and children. As Mr. Braverman recalled, "there were about 25 people in the audience."


In 2003, the Foundation decided to produce the recording for public release, and worked with Airshow Mastering to clean and edit the recording. However, by 2006, many technological advances had been made in audio restoration. Jamie Howarth at Plangent Processes, along with Steve Rosenthal at the Magic Shop NYC were brought in to continue and refine the difficult task of creating the cleanest and best sounding recording possible. The result of these many years of researching and developing audio restoration is what you now hear on The Live Wire: Woody Guthrie in Performance 1949.

The Live Wire: Woody Guthrie in Performance 1949 (book with CD, used)

  • Woody Guthrie Foundation 2007

    Used hardcover in very good condition

    CD in like new condition

    72 pages

1 N. Lombardy St.

Richmond, VA 23220


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