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Woodeye
by Joel Rafael
Available at the Woody Guthrie Store

Described as a natural interpreter of Woody Guthrie's lyrics and music, nationally acclaimed songwriter Joel Rafael has embarked on a new musical project to celebrate the songs of Woody Guthrie. Woodeye, Rafael's fourth CD, was released internationally on Sunday, July 14th at the Woody Guthrie Folk Festival in Guthrie's hometown of Okemah, OK, in honor of Guthrie's birthday.

Produced by Dan Rothchild, Woodeye contains fourteen songs. Twelve were penned by Guthrie, one by Rafael, and one unpublished lyric-"Dance A Little Longer,"-is a co-write with words by Guthrie and music by Rafael. The album also includes guest appearances by Jennifer Warnes, Ellis Paul, Van Dyke Parks, and Matt Cartsonis.

"I really wanted to make a recording that would be a Woody Guthrie experience for a new audience: a collection of songs, both familiar and rare, that would bring Woody's material within reach of the ears of today's listeners. It was an awesome challenge to make an album of Woody Guthrie songs. It was much more difficult than doing my own songs, because it was important for me to honor Woody through his music, not just record a collection of his songs," says Rafael. "The story on 'Dance A Little Longer' is not about me co-writing a song with Woody; it's more like a celebration and acknowledgement of how timeless Woody's material is, and how well it lives into the new millennium."


 

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