Folk Alley's 100 Most Essential Folk Songs

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Folk Alley, the 24-hour online stream of Kent State University's WKSU, has never hopped on or off any folk-music bandwagons. Which, in turn, makes it a perfect place to explore the genre's many permutations, from bare-bones acoustic protest music to the many forms of electric roots music that followed. Folk Alley recently spent eight weeks polling its listeners in search of a master list of "The 100 Most Essential Folk Songs." The results — found here in the form of a printable list and a continuous music mix, streamed in no particular order — are fodder for debate, discussion and discovery.

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Folk legend Woody Guthrie. Getty Images hide caption

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What are your favorite folk songs? Head over to the Folk Alley site and join the discussion. To get you started, here's the master list:

(The list is the following format: Song - Written OR Performed By )

The 100 Essential Folk Songs
1. "This Land Is Your Land" - Woody Guthrie
2. "Blowin' in the Wind" - Bob Dylan
3. "City of New Orleans" - Steve Goodman
4. "If I Had a Hammer" - Pete Seeger
5. "Where Have All the Flowers Gone" - The Kingston Trio
6. "Early Morning Rain" - Gordon Lightfoot
7. "Suzanne" - Leonard Cohen
8. "We Shall Overcome" - Pete Seeger
9. "Four Strong Winds" - Ian and Sylvia
10. "Last Thing on My Mind" - Tom Paxton
11. "The Circle Game" - Joni Mitchell
12. "Tom Dooley" - The Kingston Trio (Trad)
13. "Both Sides Now" - Joni Mitchell
14. "Who Knows Where the Time Goes" - Sandy Denny
15. "Goodnight Irene" - The Weavers (Trad)
16. "Universal Soldier" - Buffy Sainte-Marie
17. "Don't Think Twice, It's Alright" - Bob Dylan
18. "Diamonds and Rust" - Joan Baez
19. "Sounds of Silence" - Simon & Garfunkel
20. "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald" - Gordon Lightfoot
21. "Alice's Restaurant" - Arlo Guthrie
22. "Turn, Turn, Turn!" - The Byrds (Pete Seeger)
23. "Puff the Magic Dragon" - Peter, Paul and Mary
24. "Thirsty Boots" - Eric Anderson
25. "There But for Fortune" - Phil Ochs
26. "Across the Great Divide" - Kate Wolf
27. "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down" - The Band (Robbie Robertson)
28. "The Dutchman" - Steve Goodman
29. "Matty Groves" - Fairport Convention (Trad)
30. "Pastures of Plenty" - Woody Guthrie
31. "Canadian Railroad Trilogy" - Gordon Lightfoot
32. "Ramblin' Boy" - Tom Paxton
33. "Hello in There" - John Prine
34. "The Mary Ellen Carter" - Stan Rogers
35. "Scarborough Fair" - Martin Carthy (Trad)
36. "Freight Train" - Elizabeth Cotton
37. "Like a Rolling Stone" - Bob Dylan
38. "Paradise" - John Prine
39. "Northwest Passage" - Stan Rogers
40. "And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda" - Eric Bogle
41. "Changes" - Phil Ochs
42. "Streets of London" - Ralph McTell
43. "Gentle on My Mind" - John Hartford
44. "Barbara Allen" - Shirley Collins (Trad)
45. "Little Boxes" - Malvina Reynolds
46. "The Water Is Wide" - Traditional
47. "Blue Moon of Kentucky" - Bill Monroe
48. "No Regrets" - Tom Rush
49. "Amazing Grace" - Odetta (Trad)
50. "Catch the Wind" - Donovan
51. "If I Were a Carpenter" - Tim Hardin
52. "Big Yellow Taxi" - Joni Mitchell
53. "House of the Rising Sun" - Doc & Richard Watson (Trad)
54. "Kisses Sweeter Than Wine" - The Weavers
55. "Tangled Up in Blue" - Bob Dylan
56. "The Boxer" - Simon and Garfunkel
57. "Someday Soon" - Ian and Sylvia
58. "Miles" - Peter, Paul and Mary
59. "Masters of War" - Bob Dylan
60. "Wildwood Flower" - Carter Family
61. "Can the Circle Be Unbroken" - Carter Family
62. "Can't Help but Wonder Where I'm Bound" - Tom Paxton
63. "Teach Your Children" - Crosby, Stills Nash & Young
64. "Deportee" - Woody Guthrie
65. "Tecumseh Valley" - Townes Van Zandt
66. "Mr. Bojangles" - Jerry Jeff Walker
67. "Cold Missouri Waters" - James Keeleghan
68. "The Crucifixion" - Phil Ochs
69. "Angel from Montgomery" - John Prine
70. "Christmas in the Trenches" - John McCutcheon
71. "John Henry" - Traditional
72. "Pack Up Your Sorrows" - Richard and Mimi Farina
73. "Dirty Old Town" - Ewan MacColl
74. "Caledonia" - Dougie MacLean
75. "Gentle Arms of Eden" - Dave Carter
76. "My Back Pages" - Bob Dylan
77. "Arrow" - Cheryl Wheeler
78. "Hallelujah" - Leonard Cohen
79. "Eve of Destruction" - Barry McGuire
80. "Man of Constant Sorrow" - Ralph Stanley (Trad)
81. "Shady Grove" - Traditional
82. "Pancho and Lefty" - Townes Van Zandt
83. "Old Man" - Neil Young
84. "Mr. Tambourine Man" - Bob Dylan
85. "American Tune" - Paul Simon
86. "At Seventeen" - Janis Ian
87. "Bridge Over Troubled Water" - Simon & Garfunkel
88. "Road" - Nick Drake
89. "Tam Lin" - Fairport Convention (Trad)
90. "Ashokan Farewell" - Jay Ungar and Molly Mason
91. "Desolation Row" - Bob Dylan
92. "Love Is Our Cross to Bear" - John Gorka
93. "Hobo's Lullaby" - Woody Guthrie
94. "Urge for Going" - Tom Rush
95. "Return of the Grievous Angel" - Gram Parsons
96. "Chilly Winds" - The Kingston Trio
97. "Fountain of Sorrow" - Jackson Browne
98. "The Times They Are A-Changin'" - Bob Dylan
99. "Our Town" - Iris Dement
100. "Leaving on a Jet Plane" - John Denver

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