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Quotes of the day: Woody Guthrie

Published Thursday, October 03, 2013 @ 6:23 AM EDT
Oct 03 2013

Woodrow Wilson "Woody" Guthrie (July 14, 1912 - October 3, 1967) was an American singer-songwriter and folk musician whose musical legacy includes hundreds of political, traditional and children's songs, ballads and improvised works. He frequently performed with the slogan This Machine Kills Fascists displayed on his guitar. His best-known song is This Land Is Your Land. Many of his recorded songs are archived in the Library of Congress. Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, Bruce Springsteen, John Mellencamp, Pete Seeger, Andy Irvine, Joe Strummer, Billy Bragg, Jay Farrar, Jeff Tweedy, Bob Childers and Tom Paxton have acknowledged Guthrie as a major influence. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


All of you cowboys, fight for your land.

Any fool can make something complicated. It takes a genius to make it simple.

Anyone who uses more than two chords is just showing off.

Civilization is spread more by singing than by anything else, because whole big bunches can sing a particular song where not every man can join in on the same conversation.

I ain't a Communist necessarily, but I been in the red all my life.

I love a good man outside the law, just as much as I hate a bad man inside the law.

If the fight gets hot, the songs get hotter. If the going gets tough, the songs get tougher.

If we would just take the profit out of war, there wouldn't be any.

Left wing, chicken wing, it don't make no difference to me.

Let me be known as just the man that told you something you already knew.

Life has got a habit of not standing hitched. You got to ride it like you find it. You got to change with it. If a day goes by that don't change some of your old notions for new ones, that is just about like trying to milk a dead cow.

Life is this sound, and since creation has been a song. And there is no real trick of creating words to set to music, once you realize that the word is the music and the people are the song.

Looks like ever body is declaring war against the forces of force. That's what you get for building up a big war machine.

Love is the only God that I’ll ever believe in.

Plenty of rich folks wants to fight. Give them the guns.

Take it easy, but take it.

The note of hope is the only note that can help us or save us from falling to the bottom of the heap of evolution, because, largely, about all a human being is, anyway, is just a hoping machine.

The world is filled with people who are no longer needed- and who try to make slaves of all of us- and they have their music and we have ours.

This machine kills fascists.
(label on his guitar)

Watch the kids. Do like they do. Act like they act. Yell like they yell. Dance the way you see them dance. Sing like they sing. Work and rest the way kids do... I don't want the kids to be grownup. I want to see the grown folks be kids.

Yes, as through this world I've wandered I've seen lots of funny men; Some will rob you with a six-gun, And some with a fountain pen.

You might say that Wall Street is the street that keeps you off Easy Street.

Categories: Quotes of the day, Woody Guthrie


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