Woodyfest 2018: 2nd Place Songwriter Charlie Mosbrook
2nd Place Songrwriting Contest Winner
This post was updated on Sunday, 10 November at 6:12 P.M. to correct the locations where Mosbrook spent time busking.
2nd Place Songwriting Contest Winner Charlie Mosbrook
This year’s second place songwriting contest title [Sidenote: The eighth installment in our 21st Annual Woody Guthrie Folk Festival series features 2nd Place Songwriting Contest Winner Charlie Mosbrook.] went to Charlie Mosbrook for his song “Remember Who We Are.” Mosbrook performed the song as part of a short showcase kicking off evening performances on the Pastures of Plenty outdoor stage.
Mosbrook’s decades-long career began on the streets; he started as a busker, performing originals and traditional folk songs in the Great Lakes region (Chicago, Cleveland, Madison). A musical anthropologist, he’s worked to preserve traditional American music, plying his rich baritone and superb guitar work to entice all who will lend an ear. His positions as president of Folknet, a Northeast Ohio folk music society, and vice-president of FARM afford him a soapbox from which to preach the Folk Gospel.
After suffering a spinal cord injury in 2010, the former Ironman Triathlete had to reinvent his guitar techique to account for his newly limited mobility. In a flurry of creative energy, he released five CDs to considerable accolades, including features in No Depression, Folk Alley, and WFMT’s Midnight Special, among others.
He’s no stranger to Woody, either. In 1996, he performed at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s conference, Hard Travelin’: The Life and Legacy of Woody Guthrie, where he shared the spotlight with a who’s who of folk, country, and rock stars. [Sidenote: The week-long gathering was the first major conference devoted to Woody Guthrie. Performers included Dan Bern, Billy Bragg, Ani DiFranco, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, Joe Ely, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Arlo Guthrie, Indigo Girls, Jorma Kaukonen, Jimmy LaFave, Country Joe McDonald, Paul Metsa, Ellis Paul, David Pirner, Tim Robbins, Pete Seeger, Bruce Springsteen, and Syd Straw. Many of the same musicians reunited for the 2000 Guthrie tribute, ’til We Outnumber Them.] In his long career, Mosbrook has performed on bills featuring Crosby, Stills, and Nash; Jewel, Iris Dement, David Bromberg, Suzzy and Lucy Wainwright Roche, Chris Whitley, and Dan Bern.
In 2011 Scene Magazine’s Cleveland, Ohio edition named the musician
best local singer-songwriter.