The World Premier of “Del & Woody: The Del McCoury Band Sings Woody Guthrie

Contact: Lois Cohn Associates
Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts Presents
The World Premiere of “Del & Woody: The Del McCoury Band Sings Woody Guthrie”
Featuring Previously Unreleased Lyrics and Images From the
Woody Guthrie Archives Set to New Music by Del McCoury
Saturday, June 29, at 7:30 in the Venetian Theater

KATONAH, NY – On Saturday, June 29 at 7:30pm in the Venetian Theater, The Del McCoury Band will headline Caramoor’s American Roots Music Festival – a daylong celebration of folk, string band, country, blues, gospel, and bluegrass music. The concert will mark the world premiere and the only New York performance of The Del McCoury Band’s new project, “Del & Woody” featuring unheard and unsung words of Guthrie set to music by the great bluegrass musician. To help bring new life to the work of American folk poet Woody Guthrie, his daughter, Nora Guthrie, gave Del McCoury exclusive access to the archives of her father’s unpublished work. Now, with the support of Woody Guthrie’s family, The Del McCoury Band will perform an evening of never-before-heard lyrics written by the “Dust Bowl Troubadour” set to new music by Del McCoury and including a multi-media presentation featuring Guthrie’s original words, drawings and other materials from the archives that inspired this performance. In addition, McCoury, will perform his trademark Bluegrass standards and favorites.
“The Del/Woody project is a real treat for us to present at Caramoor. What better way to celebrate the roots of American music than a new collaboration between American icons,” said Maggi Landau, Artistic Director of American Roots Music. “Del McCoury is a much-awarded American treasure who, over the past 50 years, has continued to popularize bluegrass music. His willingness to experiment, to bring folk and rock and other forms of music into the bluegrass fold, explains his appeal to hard-core bluegrass fans as well as people who don’t know anything about bluegrass. Woody Guthrie is America’s folk poet who continues to inspire singer/songwriters everywhere. Although long gone, he lives on through his published words and music and now has a whole new body of songs thanks to Del.”
The American Roots Music Festival is appropriate for all ages. Picnicking is encouraged; festival-goers can bring their own picnic, purchase food or beverages on site or order a picnic in advance for pick-up at Caramoor by calling Great Performances® at 212-337-6055 or visiting
American Roots Music Festival: Full festival tickets are $35, $45, $55.
Children under 18 are half price. To order tickets, call the Box Office at 914.232.1252 or
For press tickets, images, artist information or interviews, contact Brittnee Walker at 412.601.2474 [email protected]
Del McCoury
For over fifty years, Del McCoury’s music has defined authenticity for hard core bluegrass fans as well as a growing number of fans among those only vaguely familiar with the genre. McCoury is something special, a living link to the days when bluegrass was made only in hillbilly honkytonks, schoolhouse shows and on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry, yet also a commandingly vital presence today, from prime time and late night talk show TV to music festivals where audiences number in the hundreds of thousands. Born in York County, PA, Del McCoury would once have seemed an unlikely candidate for legendary status. Bitten hard by the bluegrass bug when he heard Earl Scruggs’ banjo in the early 50s- “everybody else was crazy about Elvis, but I loved Earl,” he says with a chuckle- McCoury became a banjo picker himself, working in the rough but lively Baltimore and D.C. bar scene into the early 1960s. He joined Bill Monroe’s Blue Grass Boys in early 1963 and the Father of Bluegrass moved McCoury from the banjo to guitar. After a few years, McCoury formed his own band, the Dixie Pals, which his son Ronnie eventually joined. The 90s propelled the Del McCoury Band to the top of the bluegrass world and the McCoury has now released 29 albums. Americana music icon Richard Thompson says, “I think that’s the best bluegrass band, period. That’s it.”
Woody Guthrie (1912-1967)
Woody Guthrie was one of America’s greatest folksingers and most influential songwriters. Although born in Okemah, Oklahoma, Guthrie’s true home was all of America—“from California to the New York island,” to take a line from his most famous song, “This Land Is Your Land.” Woody’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
“We built a home, my husband and I, not to be old or new, just to be beautiful. And we built it for music.” ~ Lucie Rosen
Caramoor, the country estate of Walter and Lucie Rosen, was where they built their home and filled it with treasures. Enjoying the pleasure their friends took in the beauty of Caramoor with its art collection, gardens, and musical programs, in 1946 the Rosens established a public trust to open Caramoor to the community. Their musical evenings were the inspiration for the Caramoor Summer Music Festival, now in its sixty-eighth year, and the ongoing Music in the Rosen House series.
Since its founding, Caramoor has gained international renown as a cultural institution, presenting music of all types and inspiring artists and audiences alike.
Caramoor enriches the lives of its audiences through intimate, innovative and diverse musical performances of the highest quality. Education is a valued component of Caramoor’s mission, and Caramoor offers programs for the mentoring of young professional musicians as well as curriculum-based programs for school children emphasizing music, history and visual and decorative arts. Caramoor is often described as “a Garden of Great Music,” where audiences are invited to explore the beautiful grounds and gardens, discover the fascinating collection of period rooms and antiquities in the Rosen House, and enjoy beautiful music in the Music Room, Spanish Courtyard and Venetian theater.
Concert Venues and Gardens
Summer concerts take place in two outdoor theaters: the 1,714-seat, acoustically superb Venetian Theater and the more intimate, romantic 558-seat Spanish Courtyard. In the fall and winter all concerts are presented in the magnificent Music Room in the Rosen House. Caramoor’s gardens, also used for concerts, are also well worth the visit and include nine unique perennial gardens. Among them are a Sense Circle for the visually handicapped, the Sunken Garden, a Butterfly Garden, the Tapestry Hedge, and the Iris and Peony Garden.
By car from the West Side of Manhattan and New Jersey, take the Saw Mill River Parkway north to Katonah. Exit at Route 35/Cross River. Turn right and, at the first traffic light, make a right turn onto Route 22 south. Travel 1.9 miles to the junction of Girdle Ridge Road. Follow the signs to Caramoor. (For detailed directions call 914.232.5035 and press 4, or online at Parking at Caramoor is free.
By train, take the Harlem Division of the Metro-North Railroad to Katonah, New York. Taxi service from the station to Caramoor (5 minutes away) is available.