Weekday Wayback: Arlo Guthrie- Alice's Restaurant

Thanksgiving is nearly upon us and in keeping with that theme, I've chosen Alice's Restaurant by Arlo Guthrie as our Weekday Wayback. Guthrie's father was the well-known singer-songwriter, Woody Guthrie, who also wrote songs with political themes. This was his debut album; it was released in 1967. Influences of both Pete Seeger and his father can be found on this album, yet we hear Guthrie's own distinct synthesis of his predecessors that show him moving into territory uniquely his own. There's a point to all of this, which is this: "Alice's Restaurant Massacre" is the Thanksgiving Song, end of discussion. The original recording clocks in at 18 minutes and 34 seconds. The talking blues style is well suited to this true story of taking out the trash and dodging the draft. The song included with this post is an updated version (released in 1995) that runs for 22 minutes and 26 seconds. I really don't want to give too much away for anyone who hasn't heard it before but please believe me when I say this is song worth every second. The amazing thing of it all is this song has its basis in reality, the events of which took place on Thanksgiving Day 1965, granted there is some exaggeration in this retelling. With that in mind, have a lovely Thanksgiving!

Natalie Doggett

Natalie DoggettComment