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Woody Guthrie Prize coverage








Opening of “For the Good Times: The Artistry of Kris Kristofferson”



WGP prize

Woody Guthrie Prize to honor Kris Kristofferson

Annual award recognizes artists who embody the spirit of Woody Guthrie

TULSA, Okla. – An award that honors those who embody the spirit of legendary folk singer/songwriter Woody Guthrie will be presented to American musician and actor Kris Kristofferson during an event on Tuesday, Oct. 18 at 6:30 p.m. at Cain’s Ballroom in Tulsa’s Brady Arts District. With previous award ceremonies taking place in New York and Los Angeles, this year’s ceremony will be the first held in Tulsa.

The Woody Guthrie Prize is given annually to the artist who best exemplifies the spirit and life 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.

“With over 50 years of social activism as a voice for disenfranchised, Kris was an obvious choice to receive the 2016 Woody Guthrie Prize,” said Woody Guthrie Center Executive Director Deana McCloud. “It is an honor to recognize his incredible career and tireless work to make positive improvements in our society.”

The event will include the Woody Guthrie Prize presentation and a special musical performance as friends, including Rodney Crowell and others, will join Kristofferson on stage to perform some of his most popular songs.

Proceeds from the event will support the Woody Guthrie Center, a 12,000-square-foot center that features state-of-the-art, interactive exhibits on Guthrie’s life, art and creative legacy. The center is home to Guthrie’s comprehensive archives, including the original, handwritten version of Guthrie’s landmark anthem, “This Land is Your Land,” which is available for viewing at the center.

The Woody Guthrie Archives were brought to Tulsa by the George Kaiser Family Foundation (GKFF), which purchased them in 2011 from the Guthrie family. In 2013, the Woody Guthrie Center opened to preserve and showcase this famous Oklahoma son’s legacy and life story. The foundation continues its commitment to the Woody Guthrie Center through grant funding that makes the Woody Guthrie Prize possible. Currently in its third year, past recipients of the award include Mavis Staples (2015) and Pete Seeger (2014).

Kristofferson has been making things happen his entire life. His distinguished musical career has encompassed the writing of many American songs. Among some of his biggest hits are, “Me and Bobby McGee,” “Sunday Morning Coming Down” and “Help Me Make It Through the Night.” By 1987, it was estimated that more than 450 artists had recorded Kristofferson’s compositions.

In addition to singing and songwriting, Kristofferson has a notable acting career starring in more than 70 films. In 1977, he won a Golden Globe for Best Actor in “A Star Is Born.” He’s appeared in cult favorites including the “Blade” trilogy, “Lone Star,” “A Soldier’s Daughter Never Cries,” “Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore,” “Blume In Love,” “Cisco Pike,” and “Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid.” Additional honors include three GRAMMY Awards and inductions into the Country Music Hall of Fame, the National Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame.

“With poetic sensibilities unmatched in late sixties Nashville, Kristofferson introduced male vulnerability and ultimately the bedroom to country music,” said Rodney Crowell. “Thoughtful sensuality, longing, raw emotion and a sharp eye out society’s disenfranchised underbelly are the linchpin of the Kristofferson legend. Like Hank Williams and Johnny Cash before him, he literally redefined country music, seducing and enlightening his audience with timeless insight. I’m a devotee.”

Woody Guthrie’s songs celebrate the beauty and bounty of America and seek the truth about our country and its people. He turned complex ideas about democracy, human rights, and economic equality into simple songs that all Americans could embrace. Woody spoke for those who carried a heavy burden or had come upon hard times. His words gave a voice to their struggle, and his songs gave them hope and strength.

Tickets will be available beginning June 13th and can be purchased for $50 or $60. Assigned seating will be enforced, so purchasing tickets early is recommended. To purchase tickets, visit www.cainsballroom.com.


The Woody Guthrie Center Presents:

 Legends Of Motown:

Celebrating The Supremes

 Curated by the GRAMMY Museum® at L.A. LIVE, Exhibit Features Rare Artifacts from the Premier Motown Records Act

 Founding Supremes Member Ms. Mary Wilson to Appear June 15 in Tulsa for Intimate Interview and Q&A with Center Members and Donors

 Tulsa, OK, June 6, 2016—The Woody Guthrie Center will explore the enduring legacy and influence of Motown Records’ premier recording artists with the unveiling of Legends Of Motown: Celebrating The Supremes on June 16. Curated by the GRAMMY Museum® at L.A. LIVE, the exhibit will offer visitors a unique look at the life and career of one of the most successful American singing groups of the ’60s, the Supremes, through rare artifacts from the private collection of founding member Ms. Mary Wilson.

On display through September 25, the exhibit features rare photographs from the personal collection of Mary Wilson; concert posters; tour books, fan memorabilia; and an assortment of performance gowns, including:

“Primette Pristine” gowns worn in 1961, one of the earliest sets purchased by the Supremes when they were still known as the Primettes

  • “White De Mink” outfit worn on ABC’s “The Hollywood Palace” in 1966
  • “Turquoise Freeze” dresses worn during a 1967 appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show”
  • “Red Hot” gown worn by Mary Wilson on “The Ed Sullivan Show” in 1970 for the debut of the new Supremes lineup featuring Cindy Birdsong and Jean Terrell

“We recently opened our second Motown exhibit in Los Angeles celebrating The Miracles, the first group to ink a deal with the legendary label, so we couldn’t be more excited to continue honoring the legacy of Motown by traveling our Supremes exhibit to the Woody Guthrie Center,” said Nwaka Onwusa, GRAMMY Museum Curator. “We can’t wait for Tulsa visitors and residents to discover the important impact The Supremes had on American music through this exhibit.”

“The Mary Wilson ‘Supreme’ gown collection is a dream come true for me,” said Ms. Wilson. “This collection is a gift that I give to all of those who have ever loved music and glamour. As you look at all of these wonderful treasures, please be reminded that three little black girls’ dared to dream, and made their dreams come true. Thank you, Motown, and the thousands of fans all over the world.”

“We are thrilled to be hosting this event with Ms. Wilson and opening this incredible exhibit,” stated Woody Guthrie Center Executive Director Deana McCloud. “The Supremes set the standard as strong black female performers during the height of the Civil Rights Movement with their amazing harmonies and glamor. It’s an honor to host this exhibit in Tulsa as we share the power that music has to change the world.”

The VIP exhibit preview and program with Ms. Wilson will begin at 5:30 PM on June 15. Memberships to the Woody Guthrie Center may be purchased by calling the Center at 918-574-2710.


WGC 3rd Anniversary:




April 1 – June 5 Special Exhibit:

Pride & Joy: The Texas Blues of Stevie Ray Vaughan



WGC Continuing Woody’s legacy of social justice:



Catch a Fire: The Legacy of Bob Marley Exhibit



Huntington’s Awareness on Huff Post:



WGC Afterschool Music Program Students in the news:




The WGC in Rolling Stone!



News about our Afterschool Music Program:



Interview with WGC Executive Director Deana McCloud:



Interview with Fab Four Exhibits partner Chuck Gunderson:



Our friends at the Tulsa World had a sneak preview of the Beatles exhibit:



“Ladies and Gentlemen…The Beatles!” opens February 4 and runs through May 25 at the WGC! 



We helped make Tulsa #47 on this list–plan your trip soon! 


The Woody Guthrie Center is proud to be unique and quirky.  Thanks for noticing, CNN.




News about our Phil Ochs collection donated from his family and our upcoming Phil Ochs exhibit and documentary:




We’re proud to hear “This Land” being performed by Jim James and My Morning Jacket as part of this new ad for North Face.  And it was wonderful having him in the WGC viewing the original lyrics.




Great article in the New York Times about the rejuvenation of downtown Tulsa! The WGC loves the cover photo!




New collection to be donated to Woody Guthrie Center

Woody Guthrie Center to house artist Phil Ochs’ work


TULSA, Okla. – The Woody Guthrie Center will soon house the Phil Ochs Archive consisting of Ochs’ lyrics, posters, songbooks, photos, videos and more. The collection, donated by his daughter, will be unveiled at an event later this fall.


“The topical songs that Phil Ochs wrote are still relevant today, just as the music of Woody Guthrie continues to address the struggles that we face in our society,” said Deana McCloud, executive director for the Woody Guthrie Center. “We are honored to be the caretakers of the work that these advocates for social justice left, and we look forward to expanding our collection in the future to include more work that is empowering, gives voice to the voiceless and makes positive changes in our society.”


Ochs wrote hundreds of songs and released eight albums as a topical songwriter in the 1960s and 70s. Songs like “I Ain’t Marching Anymore,” “Changes,” “Power and the Glory” and “The War Is Over” are among his most popular songs.


“I lost my father at an early age, and I think I clung to his possessions because of that,” said Ochs’ daughter and donor of the collection, Meegan Lee Ochs. “When approached by the Woody Guthrie Center about donating the collection, it suddenly seemed so important for his journals and innumerable notepads where he captured small details alongside moments of genius to be available to those who might want to see and learn from them. I hope somewhere, Woody and my dad are smiling.”


Researchers will have access to tapes and videos of Ochs’ TV appearances, scrapbooks, articles written by and about Ochs and countless photos. The collection will also include Ochs’ gold lamé suit, made by Elvis Presley’s tailor and costumer Nudie Cohn. Ochs wore this suit on the cover of his albums Greatest Hits and Gunfight at Carnegie Hall, released in 1970.  The Woody Guthrie Center will integrate items from the collection into future exhibits.


“I am so thrilled that the Phil Ochs archives will sit alongside Woody’s at the Woody Guthrie Center. Phil was one of Woody’s closest protégés, a true “son”. His music and life steadfastly responded to the toughest, and most controversial, issues of his generation,” said Nora Guthrie, daughter of Woody Guthrie. “He was a uniquely fearless and outspoken artist, as was my father. Having their archives in one place is the absolute mother lode for scholars and historians covering the arts and the issues of the twentieth century.”


The Woody Guthrie Center looks to add more collections in the future to house alongside Woody Guthrie’s memorabilia. For more information about the collection or donating to the Woody Guthrie Center, please call (918) 574-2710.


About The Woody Guthrie Center

The Woody Guthrie Center, opened in 2013, features state of the art exhibits, an extensive outreach and education program, and a concert series to bring his legacy to Tulsans and those who make the pilgrimage to what is a destination for Woody Guthrie fans worldwide. The Center is more than a museum; instead, it is a center of investigation for inspiration. By providing examples of Woody’s ability to use his creativity as a way of expressing the world around him, the staff of the Woody Guthrie Center hopes to encourage others to find their voices and the power that lies within the creative process. For more information, please visit www.woodyguthriecenter.org.



Spread the word about the Woody Guthrie Center!



News about the Bruce Springsteen exhibition opening is spreading!







Tulsa World article about the Bruce Springsteen exhibition opening on April 29–get your tickets to attend!!





Post Punk and Industrial Rocker, Martin Atkins, to Lecture,  Screen Documentary at Woody Guthrie Center

TULSA, OK – After departing Austin’s SXSW Festival later this week, producer, drummer, and documentary film maker, Martin Atkins, will stop by the Woody Guthrie Center to screen his documentary and present two different lecture programs.

On Saturday, March 15, 2014 at 1:00 pm, Atkins will screen his documentary, “16 Days in China,” shot during his 2006 trip to Beijing, China, where he recorded the cream of the Beijing music scene crop. The film includes exclusive studio footage showing the recording of the china dub sound system album, upcoming Chinese artists including Snapline, The Subs, and P.K.14.  It also contains music videos, cultural commentary, exclusive music, and more.

Later that day, he will present two different programs including “Crowd Funding 101” at 3:00 pm and “Punk Lecture” at 5:00 pm.

Atkins is the definition of entrepreneurial activity in cultural arts endeavors.  His thirty-plus years in the music business spans across genres and borders and industries.  He was a member of Public Image Ltd and Killing Joke.  He founded industrial super group Pigface, The Damage Manual, and Murder Inc., and has contributed to Nine Inch Nails and Ministry.  He is the owner of Invisible Records and Mattress Factory Recording Studios (est.1988).  He is the author of Tour:Smart, a syndicated blogger, and teaches at Madison Media Institute.  In his spare time, Atkins is also a DJ and father of four.

The Woody Guthrie Center, located at 102 East Brady Street in Tulsa, OK, is more than a museum; instead, it is a center of investigation for inspiration. By providing examples of Woody’s ability to use his creativity as a way of expressing the world around him, the Center encourages others to find their voices and the power that lies within the creative process. Public programs are free with paid admission of $8 (discounts available for senior, student, youth, groups and military).

For more information, visit www.woodyguthriecenter.org .



Tulsa World article about “Uncovering the Deportees” with Tim Z. Hernandez; Lance Canales and the Flood:  http://www.tulsaworld.com/scene/woody-guthrie-center-to-host-concert-storytelling-event/article_58403313-52a9-5c73-88bc-444792ad06a7.html

USA Today article about the Woody Guthrie Prize event:


WGP prizelogosmall

 The Tulsa-based Woody Guthrie Center and the L.A.-based GRAMMY Museum will move forward with their plans to celebrate the late American folk singer Pete Seeger with the first ever Woody Guthrie Prize during an event Saturday, Feb. 22 at the Peter Norton Symphony Space in New York City. The event and award presentation will serve as a celebration of Seeger’s musical legacy, as well as his connection to Guthrie and his work. Seeger was scheduled to accept the award and perform at the event before his passing on Jan. 27.

“The only thing I know for certain is that Pete would want us to gather together and make some music,” said Nora Guthrie, daughter of Woody Guthrie. “The power of song, as he constantly reminded us, can take us through everything that life, and death, throws at us. On Feb. 22nd, we won’t take a moment of silence to remember him. We will take all the moments to sing – as loudly and with as many harmonies as we can muster. If Pete heard we were going to honor him by not singing, he would be furious! If you love Pete, how can you keep from singing!”

Previously planned musical performances at the event that included Seeger are now to be determined, but the event will take place with a new title “How Can I Keep from Singing!” More information on the event schedule will be released as details become available.

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.

Proceeds from the event will support the Woody Guthrie Center, a 12,000-square-foot center that features state-of-the-art, interactive exhibits on Guthrie’s life, art and creative legacy. The center is home to Guthrie’s comprehensive archives, including the original, handwritten version of Guthrie’s landmark anthem, “This Land is Your Land,” which is available for viewing at the center.

“Pete was so happy to be included in this fundraiser for the newly created Woody Guthrie Center in Tulsa, Okla,” Nora Guthrie said. “As the first recipient of the Prize, there can be no better person to set the standard than Pete. He was always available for a worthy cause. As his wife of 70 years Toshi joked, ‘I would have left him years ago, if only it was for another woman. Unfortunately, he was always away for another ’cause!’ It’s up to us now, to step in and make sure all the ’causes’ that Pete believed in get our support.”

Tickets for the event are $40 or $50 and can be purchased by calling (212) 864-5400 or visiting www.symphonyspace.org. For additional information on the Woody Guthrie Center, visit http://WoodyGuthrieCenter.org/.