Legendary folk singer Arlo Guthrie isn't letting COVID-19 slow him down—instead he's busy releasing a new pandemic rendition of an 1854 classic "Hard Times Come Again No More."
Guthrie decided to record the song during quarantine to offer compassion to those who are suffering right now.
"It's funny that a song that was written over 160 years ago should be as important today—if not more so than it was then," Guthrie said.
Guthrie believes that history will repeat itself and people just need a little reassurance that everything will be OK.
"Fifty years from now, one hundred years from now, we will look back on these times like we're looking back now on former times and there will be difficulties. But there always needs to be a voice somewhere that says, 'Don't worry, we'll get through it,'" he said.
"Hard Times Come Again No More" is available now for download.
5 Things You Need to Know About Arlo Guthrie:
- Arlo follows the tradition of his father Woody Guthrie and is known for singing songs of protest against social injustice and for his storytelling performances.
- His best-known work was his debut piece, "Alice's Restaurant," a satirical talking blues song about 18 minutes in length that has since become a Thanksgiving anthem.
- Arlo's only top-40 hit was a cover of Steve Goodman's "City of New Orleans." "My father being Woody Guthrie, my kids being who they are, me being who I am, we have aired on the side of the regular person, to support the average regular guy," he said.
- The 73-year-old New Yorker still performs live, touring several cities each year, but says he "left the music industry 30 years ago because it wasn’t capable of generating or originating that type of music. "It was a little too formula for me, so we took a different road, and it has not been popular, but it was always there. There’s still a place for the old guys like myself, singing the old kind of songs that still mean something."
- Just like his father, Arlo believes he has "always been a person raised to be and have maintained a healthy suspicion of anybody in authority, especially governments and that doesn’t matter if they are left wing, chicken wing, right wing, middle of the road, whatever they are, whoever they are. I think it is always healthy to keep an eye on them."