Arlo Guthrie and Bert MontgomeryIn 1992, I was a graduate student working on a project for a class on the 1960s. Armed with a cheap cassette recorder, I traveled up to Great Barrington, Massachusetts, (just outside Stockbridge) to interview Arlo Guthrie.
Sitting on the front steps of the legendary Church from Alice's Restaurant mythology, Arlo talked about his dad, Pete Seeger, McCarthyism and the John Birch Society, how he helped Pete go electric, and the Spirit of Woodstock that changed the world. You can also learn why he left college in Billings, Montana (which led directly to his experience at the Church one fateful Thanksgiving).
One more thing - this recording was made on a cheap cassette recorder simply to have as personal reference while I completed a project and research paper for a class. I turned in the paper, made an "A" for the semester, and tucked the tape away for my occasional trip down memory lane.
Despite the background noise and the flies that fell in love with the microphone, I realized that there are some stories here that are too good not to share. Besides, twenty years later, there's something really cool about having an "unprofessional" interview on the front steps of the Church with Arlo just being, well, just being Arlo.
Enjoy. Then go and listen to hours and hours of Arlo's songs. It will make the world a better place.