Arlo Guthrie and Pete Seeger have been performing together for over 20 years, and More Together Again is their third live recording, following 1975's Together in Concert and 1982's Precious Friend. Like its predecessors, this is a two-disc set, and although it is packaged as two volumes in separate CD jewel boxes, Guthrie's label, Rising Son Records, sells it as a single item. This first volume works as a stand-alone show, however, as the 46-year-old Guthrie and the 74-year-old Seeger, captured in a show at the outdoor Wolftrap venue in Virginia on August 8, 1993, perform a combination of new and old material. Seeger, often accompanied by his grandson, Tao Rodriguez-Seeger (who, having lived eight years in Nicaragua, is especially helpful on the Spanish-language "Guantanamera"), performs many of his old favorites among his own compositions, including his children's story-song "Abiyoyo," "Where Have All the Flowers Gone," and "If I Had a Hammer (The Hammer Song)." He also introduces an amusing new number, "The Ross Perot Guide to Answering Embarrassing Questions," which is his musical setting of a verse by Calvin Trillin, with the chorus, "I lie." Guthrie, of course, is funny, too, in his characteristically goofy way on a poem, "Mooses Come Walking," although he turns more serious in covering Bob Dylan's "When the Ship Comes In" and in introducing a reflection on armed conflicts around the world, "When a Soldier Makes It Home." Guthrie is backed by Xavier, a band led by his son Abe Guthrie, and his daughters provide backing vocals with one, Sarah Guthrie (aka Sarah Lee Guthrie), stepping into the spotlight to sing Seeger's "Sailing Down This Golden River." Guthrie concludes the disc with one of his stories leading into a song, as he describes Seeger's initial disapproval when he performed the old Elvis Presley hit "Can't Help Falling in Love" at a folk festival in Europe. (What Guthrie doesn't mention is that Seeger would have had special reason to disapprove beyond his famous disdain for pop music; "Can't Help Falling in Love" was written by Hugo Peretti, Luigi Creatore, and George Weiss, the same team that hijacked Seeger's hit "Wimoweh" for "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" and claimed the resulting royalties, paying neither Seeger nor the South African songwriter Solomon Linda, who wrote "Mbube," the song Seeger adapted "Wimoweh" from.) In Guthrie's hands, "Can't Help Falling in Love" becomes a folk song of sorts, and the audience willingly sings along.
Review by William Ruhlmann
|3||Where Have All the Flowers Gone||4:20|
|4||Mooses Come Walking||1:02|
|5||When the Ship Comes In||3:49|
|7||The Ross Perot Guide to Answering Embarrassing Questions||3:27|
|8||Sailing Down This Golden River||4:04|
|9||If I Had a Hammer||2:29|
|10||When a Soldier Makes It Home||7:39|
|11||Can't Help Falling in Love||8:10|
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