The Avett Brothers have shared a new cover of Woody Guthrie’s classic “This Land Is Your Land,” along with an accompanying music video that had been directed by Samuel Bayer. The song will be made available as the digital single on November 6, and can currently be heard in the music video.
“Samuel has highlighted the timelessness of perhaps the most quintessential American folk song by creating a timeless music video marrying performance with the most lovely imagery of American people,” Seth Avett said in a press release. “We are honored to be a part of such an endeavor in the likeminded spirit of unity and love.”
Bayer, who’s credits include directing iconic music videos such as Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” Green Day’s “Boulevard of Broke Dreams” and Blind Melon’s “No Rain,” filmed the music video in Los Angeles, New York, New Orleans and the Navajo Nation. The music video acts as an ode to North America, much as Guthrie’s original had been. Bayer stated he was inspired to make the music video while traveling cross-country, listening to The Avett Brothers. He contacted the band to ask if they’d be open to covering “This Land Is Your Land.”
“Early in the lockdown, I was traveling across America working on a documentary about the COVID virus,” Bayer said in a press statement. “While visiting testing sites in vulnerable populations, I was listening to The Avett Brothers music and was inspired to make a music video. I contacted them and told them I wanted to hear their interpretation of Woody Guthrie’s classic anthem, ‘This Land is Your Land.’ I traveled to North Carolina and filmed The Avett Brothers performing the song live in their home studios and combined that with imagery filmed around America. This is a hopeful video during a time where the Country is so divided and I hope Americans will be inspired to be thoughtful during this trying time.”
The Avett Brother’s maintain Guthrie’s spirit in their cover, harmonizing as they are joined by just an acoustic guitar. The twanging tone found in their voices sounds eerily similar to Guthrie’s, and adds an extra layer to the track.
Last month, The Avett Brothers released the third EP in their The Gleam series with The Gleam III. The band had also performed at a socially-distanced drive-in concert in their home state of North Carolina, with the show also being available as a live stream performance. In August, The Avett Brothers released their latest single, “I Go To My Heart.” In 2021, the band is expected to perform at the Sea.Hear.Now festival alongside Billy Idol and Pearl Jam.
Photo credit: Ekaterina Gorbacheva