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Guitarist Morello To Headline Woody Guthrie Tribute Concert At Metro

Metro/Smart Bar

(credit: Metro/Smart Bar)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — Former Rage against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello was the headline act in a rally staged by a nurses’ union Friday, but that won’t be his only engagement while in Chicago.

On Saturday night, just the night before the NATO Summit officially gets underway at McCormick Place, Morello will headline a concert honoring Woody Guthrie, who would have turned 100 this summer.

“This Land Is Our Land: A Centennial Celebration of Woody Guthrie” is set for Saturday night at 8 p.m. at the Metro, 3730 N. Clark St. It is being staged by the non-profit arts organization Portoluz.

Morello, who is known as a solo act as “The Nightwatchman,” will appear along with folksinger-songwriter Holly Near, klezmer band the Klezmatics, singer-songwriter Toshi Reagon, traditional Mexican musical group Son del Viento, former Mekons frontman and folk-punk artist Jon Langford, Wisconsin singer-guitarist Bucky Halker, and poet Kevin Coval.

Woody Guthrie would have turned 100 on July 14 of this year. He learned folk songs while traveling with migrant workers from Oklahoma to California during the Great Depression, and later joined Pete Seeger and other legends in New York City’s leftist folk music community during the 1940s.

He served as a Merchant Marine during World War II before returning to New York. He died of Huntington’s disease at the age of 55 on Oct. 3, 1967.

Morello performed on Friday at the nurses’ rally at Daley Plaza, where participants called for a Robin Hood tax on Wall Street banks.