You are here

Daniel Wolff: Grown-up Anger

Literati is thrilled to host author Daniel Wolff who will be sharing his new book Grown-up Anger. Daniel will be joined in conversation with fellow music writer David Marsh and there will be a special musical performance from Chris Buhalis!

About Grown-up Anger:
A tour de force of storytelling years in the making: a dual biography of two of the greatest songwriters, Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie, that is also murder mystery and a history of labor relations and socialism, big business and greed in twentieth-century America—all woven together in one epic saga that holds meaning for all working Americans today

When thirteen-year-old Daniel Wolff first heard Dylan’s “Like a Rolling Stone,” it ignited a life-long interest with understanding the rock poet’s anger. When he later discovered “Song to Woody,” Dylan’s tribute to his hero, Woody Guthrie, Wolff believed he’d uncovered one source of Dylan’s rage. Sifting through Guthrie’s recordings, Wolff found “1913 Massacre”—a song which told the story of a union Christmas party during a strike in Calumet, Michigan, in 1913 that ended in horrific tragedy.

Following the trail from Dylan to Guthrie to an event that claimed the lives of seventy-four men, women, and children a century ago, Wolff found himself tracing the history of an anger that has been passed down for decades. From America’s early industrialized days, an epic battle to determine the country’s direction has been waged, pitting bosses against workers, big business against the labor movement. In Guthrie’s eyes, the owners ultimately won; the 1913 Michigan tragedy was just one example of a larger, lost history purposely distorted and buried in time.

In this magnificent cultural study, Wolff braids three disparate strands—Calumet, Guthrie, and Dylan—together to create a devastating revisionist history of twentieth-century America. Grown-Up Anger chronicles the struggles between the haves and have-nots, the impact changing labor relations had on industrial America, and the way two musicians used their fury to illuminate economic injustice and inspire change.

Daniel Wolff is the author of The Fight for Home: How (Parts of) New Orleans Came Back; How Lincoln Learned to Read; 4th of July/Asbury Park; and You Send Me: The Life and Times of Sam Cooke, which won the Ralph J. Gleason Music Book Award. He has been nominated for a Grammy and was named Literary Artist of 2013 for Rockland County, New York. A poet, songwriter, and essayist, he has helped produce a number of documentary films with director Jonathan Demme. He lives in Nyack, New York.

Dave Marsh is the author of the bestselling Bruce Springsteen biographies, Born to Run and Glory Days, and over a dozen other books, including Before I Get Old: The Story of the Who, Louie, Louie: The History and Myth, and The New Book of Rock Lists. A former editor of Creem and Rolling Stone, he currently edits the newsletter Rock & Roll Confidential.

Chris Buhalis is a singer and songwriter from Ann Arbor, MI


Event date: 
Thursday, November 16, 2017 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
124 E. Washington St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
Grown-Up Anger: The Connected Mysteries of Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, and the Calumet Massacre of 1913 Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062451699
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper - June 13th, 2017

Author Photo: