TULSA, Okla. — Bruce Springsteen is being recognized as this year's recipient of the Woody Guthrie Prize.
The Woody Guthrie Center will present the award to the well-known artist in a virtual event streaming on May 13.
Springsteen has released over 20 studio albums, sold over 120 million records worldwide, earned 20 GRAMMY Awards, a Tony and an Oscar award, and has received the Kennedy Center Honors and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in his lifelong career. The Woody Guthrie Center has cited his storytelling abilities that have connected fans through the hard times and the good times.
“I’m honored to receive the 2021 Woody Guthrie Prize,” Springsteen said. “Woody wrote some of the greatest songs about America’s struggle to live up its ideals in convincing fashion. He is one of my most important influences and inspirations.”
Springsteen has frequently discussed how Woody Guthrie's work inspired his own music, as well as performing Guthrie songs regularly. The singer has also been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame back in 1999.
“As an observer of the human condition and a reporter about the plight of common people, Bruce Springsteen is a true child of Woody Guthrie,” said Woody Guthrie Center Director Deana McCloud. “The Woody Guthrie Center is proud to present Bruce with this well-deserved recognition for his lifetime of speaking for the disenfranchised and inspiring generations to find the power of their own voices.”
The Woody Guthrie Prize is given to an artist, of any medium or genre, who continues in the footsteps of Woody Guthrie himself. Past recipients of the award include Joan Baez, Chuck D, John Mellencamp, Norman Lear, Kris Kristofferson, Mavis Staples, and Pete Seeger.
“We've been hoping that Bruce would join our extended family - which includes the spirit sons and daughters of Woody, Pete Seeger, and Lead Belly - as we gather this year to say "thank you for caring and for speaking out.” Welcome, brother!” said Nora Guthrie, president of Woody Guthrie Publications and Woody’s daughter.
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