Arlo Guthrie has been known to generations as a prolific songwriter, social commentator, master storyteller, actor and activist. Born in Coney Island, Arlo is the eldest son of Marjorie Mazia Guthrie and America’s most beloved singer/writer/philosopher/artist Woody Guthrie. Arlo has become an iconic figure in folk music in his own right with a distinguished and varied career spanning over fifty years.
Growing up, Arlo was surrounded by such renowned artists as Pete Seeger, Lee Hays, Ronnie Gilbert, Sonny Terry, Brownie McGhee, and Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, to name only a few. Not surprisingly, Arlo drew from these influences and he in turn became a delineative artist bridging generations of folk. He and Pete Seeger created a legendary collaboration that was sustained for over forty years.
In 1967, Guthrie attained international attention with his album “Alice’s Restaurant” which has since become an anti-establishment anthem and an essential part of Thanksgiving on rock stations receiving worldwide airplay. “Alice’s Restaurant” achieved platinum status and was made into a movie in 1969, in which Arlo played himself. 1969 also brought Arlo to the rock festival of the ages – Woodstock. His appearance showcased Arlo’s chart-topping “Coming Into Los Angeles,” which was included on the multi-platinum Woodstock soundtrack and movie.
His most famous song is the definitive version of Steve Goodman’s “The City of New Orleans” which was a hit on all major charts.
In 1983, Arlo established Rising Son Records, one of the first indie labels in existence. Rising Son is still in active operation serving as his record and production company. To date, Rising Son Records has released over twenty titles of Arlo’s, both new material and remastered versions of his classic records, including the Grammy nominated “Woody’s 20 Grow Big Songs” and “Alice’s Restaurant 50th Anniversary”. The Anniversary show was broadcast nationwide on PBS on Thanksgiving 2015.
In addition to his musical career, Guthrie is an accomplished actor with numerous television appearances. He has had recurring roles in two major network television series (“The Byrds of Paradise” and “Relativity”) and feature films, the aforementioned “Alice’s Restaurant” and “Roadside Prophets.” Arlo is the author of four children’s books and a distinguished photographer, showing his works in selected galleries.
Inspired by his parents’ activism, Arlo bought the old Trinity Church which is now home to The Guthrie Center and The Guthrie Foundation. Named for his parents, The Guthrie Center is a not-for-profit interfaith church foundation dedicated to providing a wide range of local and international services. The Guthrie Foundation is a not-for-profit educational organization that addresses issues such as the environment, health care, cultural preservation and educational exchange. In 2009, Arlo was awarded the ASCAP Foundation Champion Award for making a difference through social action on behalf of worthwhile causes and demonstrating exceptional efforts in humanitarianism.