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Ramblin' Jack Elliott

Ramblin' Jack Elliott

Biography

Ramblin' Jack Elliott borrowed from Woody Guthrie's folk stylings long before Bob Dylan did. Elliott is one of the most longstanding artists in the folk realm. He was first inspired to pick up a guitar and teach himself to play when he ran away from home at the age of fifteen to join a traveling carnival. He stumbled upon a singing rodeo clown and soon realized that he wanted to play guitar and sing. He befriended the inspirational Guthrie and even traveled with him. Elliott's folk style is different from Guthrie's in that much like his regular discourse, the narratives of Elliott's songs branch out into patchwork quilts of stories and rich accounts of hoboing as well as witty working-class yarns. His nickname was given to him by the mother of fellow folkie Odetta, who after meeting him for the first time remarked, "That Jack Elliott, he sure can ramble.”
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