Alice’s Restaurant Illustrated: A Thanksgiving Counterculture Classic

Alice’s Restau­rant. It’s now a Thanks­giv­ing clas­sic, and some­thing of a tra­di­tion around here. Record­ed in 1967, the 18+ minute coun­ter­cul­ture song recounts Arlo Guthrie’s real encounter with the law, start­ing on Thanks­giv­ing Day 1965. And it builds steadi­ly into a satir­i­cal protest against the Viet­nam War draft. We have fea­tured Guthrie’s clas­sic dur­ing past years. But, for this Thanks­giv­ing, we give you the illus­trat­ed ver­sion. Hap­py Thanks­giv­ing to all who will cel­e­brate today.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Bed Peace Revis­its John Lennon & Yoko Ono’s Famous Anti-Viet­nam War Protest

Willie Nel­son, Pete Seeger, and Arlo Guthrie at Occu­py Wall Street

The Alan Lomax Sound Archive Now Online: Fea­tures 17,000 Record­ings

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  • Pat says:

    what?! no com­ments yet?! I’m sit­ting here lis­ten­ing to my copy of this song and I say there’s got­ta be an ani­mat­ed ver­sion out there… and here it is… good job, dude.

    I reg­u­lar­ly whis­tle a few bars of this song when I wan­na seem hip and edgy- plugged in to all man­ner of coun­ter­cul­ture. too bad that this is not get­ting the traf­fic & eye­balls it deserves, cause the satire dri­ves some impor­tant points home while the sen­ti­ment behind the song is just as rel­e­vant today. peace&love ppl need to find cre­ative out­lets to give expres­sion to their dis­ap­proval of our pen­chant towards war&hate… this song reminds us that all we have to do is, in a con­cert­ed voice, say, “no, I don’t wan­na be a part of the war&hate machine”…

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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.