The Oklahoma Film and Music Office (OF+MO) is proud to be a returning partner of the 25th Woody Guthrie Folk Festival in Okemah, Okla., July 13-17. One of the longest running festivals in Oklahoma, this year’s event will honor Guthrie’s 110th birthday with performances by third & fourth generation Guthrie songwriters alongside festival veterans and newcomers alike.
The festival will host FREE educational panels and programs throughout the week. As part of the partnership, OF+MO will present the following three programs:
Folk Collusion with Tim Easton
Friday, July 15 at 11:00 a.m. at Crystal Theater
A mainstay of American roots music for more than 20 years, Tim Easton crafts songs that blur the lines between folk, blues, and workingman’s rock & roll. It’s an honest sound influenced not only by the flat-pickers and folksingers who came before him, but also the arc of Easton’s own experience. Born within a stone’s throw of the Niagara River, he spent his childhood in upstate New York and midwestern Ohio, raised on the sounds of trailblazers like Doc Watson and Woody Guthrie. Following in his heroes’ footsteps, he grew into a modern-day troubadour, busking his way around Europe for the better part of a decade before heading back home to America. Although he eventually settled in East Nashville, his touring schedule continued to take him across much of the world, from barroom gigs in rural Alaska to festival appearances in Russia.
Folk American Roots Hall Of Fame: Honoring The Past, Celebrating The Present, Nurturing The Future With Deana McCloud
Friday, July 15 at 2:00 p.m. at Okemah History Center
Deana McCloud is Owner/Partner of the Museum Collective, a partner in the Folk Americana Roots Hall of Fame in Boston. From her career as the Founding Executive Director of the Woody Guthrie Center and the former curator of music and programs for the Woody Guthrie Folk Festival, she brings a broad scope of knowledge about music history to honor the past, celebrate the present, and nurture the future.
To be housed in the Wang Theatre, the Hall of Fame will celebrate the history of Folk, Americana and Roots music through displays, memorabilia, artifacts, multi-media, lectures and concerts. As much as any city in the country, Boston has been the musical birthplace for the styles and artists we celebrate, making it a fitting home.
3000 Reasons Why Woody Guthrie Is The Great American Songwriter With Ellis Paul, Butch Hancock, & Monica Taylor
Saturday, July 16 at 1:00 p.m. at Okemah History Center
What is it about Woody’s songs that have brought this love from the masses and a deity-like worship from songwriters? His musicianship is simple— three chords and the truth— his voice unadorned, his language conversational. His melodies and chords were often “borrowed” from other songs. So what is it that brings the hero worship appeal? Why have songwriters driven thousands of miles to be here in Okemah celebrating him?
Three songwriters speak of their love for Woody and his work and why over the years it has brought them to Okemah to this celebration.
Join Ellis Paul, Monica Taylor, and Butch Hancock as they speak and sing about their love for Okemah’s national treasure.
For a complete list of panels, visit woodyfest.com/panels.
“Over the past 25 years, WoodyFest has evolved into a very special community. With the support of the Guthrie family, the Okemah community and all of our partners and supporters, we’ve truly created a family amongst the talented songwriters and the attendees who make the trip to Okemah each year,” said Randy Newman, President of the Woody Guthrie Coalition. “We continue to celebrate Woody Guthrie’s birthday and keep his legacy alive each year through our artists, presentations, performances and poetry. We’re so grateful to welcome everyone back to celebrate our 25th anniversary this July and look forward to many more.”
“We are pleased to join community leaders from around the state in celebrating the 25th anniversary of Okemah’s WoodyFest,” said OF+MO Director Tava Maloy Sofsky. “As one of the first Oklahoma artists to achieve national and international success, Woody Guthrie’s legacy represents Oklahoma’s rich, authentic artistry found in artists around the state to this day.”
For more information on WoodyFest or to purchase festival tickets and passes, visit woodyfest.com.
About the Oklahoma Film + Music Office:
Under the Oklahoma Department of Commerce, the Oklahoma Film + Music Office (OF+MO) works to promote the state as a viable hub for film, television and music production as well as further develop opportunities for workforce, business and community growth within these sectors. For more information on the Oklahoma Film + Music Office, including the state’s film incentives and additional resources, visit okfilmmusic.org.