by Sarah Lee Guthrie & Johnny Irion


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When your last name is Guthrie, people are going to have certain expectations about your music, but Sarah Lee Guthrie (Arlo's daughter) and her husband and musical collaborator, Johnny Irion, have managed to make an album that speaks to her personal heritage while possessing a strong aural personality of its own. Exploration is a collection of songs filled with the easy charm and home-truth honesty of postwar folk music, and even boasts a new tune by family friend Pete Seeger, as well as originals from Guthrie and Irion that confront war, poverty, and other social ills with a gentle but firm insistence. But Guthrie and Irion also display a stronger musical backbone than their semi-folkie ways might suggest; Exploration was produced by Gary Louris of the Jayhawks in collaboration with engineer Ed Ackerson, and Louris brought along several of his bandmates to play on the sessions, so it's no surprise that the album displays some of the twangy élan of Tomorrow the Green Grass or Sound of Lies. But it also has a playful campfire singalong quality that's obviously Guthrie and Irion's doing, without undercutting the potent if understated rock & roll energy of tunes like "Gervais" and "Gotta Prove." Exploration is a high-energy post-millennium hootenanny that adds some high-kicking fun to the passionate and playful folk-rock that's Guthrie and Irion's natural stock in trade; it's as homey and refreshing as iced tea on an August afternoon, and equally satisfying.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/05/2008
Label: Cd Baby
UPC: 0607396606726
catalogNumber: 5637370820
Rank: 235391

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Sarah Lee Guthrie & Johnny Irion   Primary Artist
Sarah Lee Guthrie   Guitar,Piano,Vocals
Gary Louris   Guitar,Background Vocals
Marc Perlman   Bass,Bass Guitar
Jay Ungar   Fiddle
Tao Rodriguez   Vocals,12-string Guitar
Eric Heywood   Pedal Steel Guitar
Dave Boquist   Banjo,Fiddle
Ruthy Ungar   Fiddle,Vocals
Greg Readling   Piano,Hammond Organ
Johnny Irion   Guitar,Harmonica,Piano,Vocals
Zeke Hutchins   Drums
Pierce Woodward   Vocals
Michael Merenda   Banjo,Vocals
Christopher Merenda   Vocals
Christopher Merenda   Vocals

Technical Credits

Pete Seeger   Composer
Ed Ackerson   Producer,Engineer,Audio Production
Sarah Lee Guthrie   Composer
Gary Louris   Producer,Audio Production
Katherine Delaney   Art Direction
Johnny Irion   Composer,Adaptation

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