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University of Texas at Austin brings you a series dedicated to the American people as a symbol of the newness and the beauty of this series and is hard. Woody had met Will Gere the actor out in California at the time of their meeting when he was working at KFC day in Los Angeles trying to make enough money to send for the wife and two daughters he had left behind in Texas. He was finally
successful but domesticity did not slow him down. Going up to northern California to make a movie with Will and John Steinbeck when he got word that his wife was in hospital about to give birth to the third child Woody and will headed south immediately came down to pat Vickers the great by members of the current enough air that we'll we'll see what he said. Let's catch up with it. We got blasted all right where would you have your baby. Baby was named after me. Funny thing you know. When you're 21 years old was killed in 1940 when he decided he would try to break into the big time in New York. As he put it he and his family took off across the rims and ledges of the 2000 mile desert to crawl and sweat an ache back again to our little shack house in Texas
leaving his wife and three children in Texas. He went to the big city New York was a shock. He went to stay with Will and heard a gear and discovered that one hundred fifty dollars for rent paid for only a month not a year because his mother told him that very dangerous not to get unzipped from your underwear in the winter so he saw himself in the underwear when he came across to the pleasure of doing my dorky diapers and Woody's underwear the place where the raunchy was. I also edit said something's got to be done so I went in and the bathroom lead to more were a bit dark and I put a great big bottle of green pine are in the tub as what it is now is just like the piney woods of Texas ranch climbing he said and I was as very damp weather catch pneumonia. So we've set an airplane staying away so I says Come on what do you know I'm in your weather. So I yanked the bridges and pulled them off the top of the pile you know on a scrap bin down good there was a
great commotion there we wrestled around awhile and finally came out feeling pretty good smelling pretty sweet and I gave him a bottle of gin. So the next morning I come in there you are right in the bathtub with a pint I am saying to him I am tired. Every day I had to give him a bottle of my own a bottle of. Pretty expensive in Los Angeles. Woody had been writing and singing worker songs writing a daily article for The People's Daily World called what he says and as he said taking sides with all the workers he knew he got busy in New York too. We had a benefit for the first two in the country I think certainly the first one uptown in New York and and it was Alan Lomax the Master Sam MORRIS JACKSON she came out from my cab at night and we had got through his first appearance in New York City big time really and very
last first period and all that belly came out to his room to sing itself and we figured hang around the edges and sing in some of the songs. This basic group later crystallized itself into the Almanac Singers whose revolving membership finally evolved into the Weavers. Here are the almanacs. I am I am. I am.
I am I am I am I am. I am. Was was was. Was. Was was. A are not everything. Are you. A on a on
was was was was a and. Was. Was. And hear is well again. Benefits Yeah. Or maybe $5 a night to buy shoes for our kids. And some of the big organizations Corsi thing the other day the organizing a CIO first big organizational dragster trade unions in this country. I was a lot of unions are. They're one
of the. Company. I am. I am
enjoying a lady like that when you live when it. And why I am I am. Those were the Allman acts with Pete Seeger hanging around the edges singing the verses the Almanac Singers established themselves in an old house on West Tenth Street in New York City. There they lived and worked. Woody did much of the lyric writing for the Allman acts and also turned out reams of his own work. It was at all manic house that he began his autobiography
Bound for Glory in the freezing winter cold. He would light the oven open its door and sit and type in the current of warm air. He would be found in the morning sound asleep. Bend over the typewriter with stacks of typed manuscript in front of him. What he wrote was direct and pissy and reach people deeply. Here is the talking union they almanacs used to perform. Not if you want higher wages let me tell you Papa you gotta talk to the workers in the shop with you you gotta gotta make it strong but it all fit together. Won't be long you get shorter hours better working conditions vacations with pay take your kid to the fight this simple so I better explain just why I got to ride on the union vein because if you wait for the boss to raise your pay we'll all be a wave until Judgement day we'll all be buried in the heavens be the straw both banned.
Now you know you're underpaid but the boss speeds up the work may be down and out. Let me talk it over. Decide to do something about it. The boss may persuade some boredom to go to a meeting and act like a fool but you can always tell us about the fact he got a yard street around and down and back you tell them to take out a blind man's cup. You got a you didn't pretty put some of the boys on the steering committee and when one guy squad got to listen when the Union talk you'd better let it alone let everybody decide to walk out on him. Some other working you so hard if just out and about in your off starvation wages you go to
the boss and the boss would yell before I know it wasn't a big deal or not if the union only looked out the window. But I've found them pickets and they all agree the bad. Slave driver says why. Now boy you come to the hardest time of all the pride about your picket line he'll call out the police the National Guard thought it a crime to have a union card bill will hit you on the head they'll call every one of you have them read on patriotic Avatar National Bank but out at Ford Here's what they found out a bowtie. Here's what they found and out at our show many years down and better lay him here by the fountain if you don't let red baiting break and if you don't let him break out and if you don't let vigilantes
but if you don't let young women vote I mean take it easy but take it in our next program. We will continue our look at the unions. You have been listening to hard travel a series devoted to the life and music of Woody Guthrie written and directed by Judith Adams. Produced by Joel good walk made for communication center the University of Texas at Austin. This is NPR. The national educational radio network.
Hard travelin'
Union days, part one
Producing Organization
University of Texas
KUT (Radio station : Austin, Tex.)
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
In this program, the first of two parts, Will Geer talks about Woody's introduction to New York, and how he took sides with the unions through song.
Series Description
A series about Woody Guthrie and his Depression-era folk music.
Social Issues
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Host: Adams, Judith
Performer: Guthrie, Woody, 1912-1967
Producing Organization: University of Texas
Producing Organization: KUT (Radio station : Austin, Tex.)
Speaker: Geer, Will
Writer: Tangley, Ralph
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 68-1-8 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:14:50
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Chicago: “Hard travelin'; Union days, part one,” 1968-02-07, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed February 23, 2024,
MLA: “Hard travelin'; Union days, part one.” 1968-02-07. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. February 23, 2024. <>.
APA: Hard travelin'; Union days, part one. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from