Sarah Lee Guthrie & Johnny Irion

Sarah Lee Guthrie & Johnny Irion


“The distinguishing feature throughout is the couple’s caressing harmonies, which carry on the legacy of Johnny and June, Gram and Emmylou.” -- Maverick


"Authentic." "Timeless." "Harmonious." "Exhilarating." Any or all of these adjectives could describe the folk-rock sound created by Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion. The musical richness and psychological depth of their initial collaboration, the fittingly titled Exploration, is irrefutable proof that the disarming granddaughter of Woody/daughter of Arlo and the prodigious South Carolinian quite naturally bring out the best in each other.

Sarah Lee was two years old when she made her singing debut as part of a children's chorus on dad Arlo Guthrie's 1981 album, Power of Love, but she had little subsequent interest in making music herself, although she was surrounded by it. After graduating from high school in 1997, Sarah Lee agreed to tour-manage her father, who was emceeing the Further Festival, on which members of the Grateful Dead were joined by the Black Crowes. She got on so well with the Crowes and Chris Robinson that, when the tour ended, she made what proved to be a life-altering decision: "I knew all these cool rock & roll guys, so I decided to move to L.A."

Irion, grand-nephew of the author John Steinbeck, had an equally influential and impressive pedigree. He rose out of the vibrant Carolina indie-rock scene, first as a member of Queen Sarah Saturday and later with Dillon Fence. He, too, got friendly with Robinson while Dillon Fence was on the road with the Crowes. Robinson convinced Irion to come out to L.A. and join Freight Train, a band he was producing. That was in the fall of '97, just after Sarah Lee arrived in town. Whether by serendipity or cosmic intervention, the two were on a collision course; they met at an L.A. club and began dating shortly after.

Two years later they simultaneously released solo albums on Arlo’s Rising Son label. Since setting out on the road together in 2001, they’ve averaged 180 shows annually. After three hit albums and nearly a decade of touring the dynamic duo is prepared to release their fourth and most highly anticipated album, “Bright Examples”, in the spring of 2011.


Sarah Lee Guthrie & Family - Go Waggaloo

Folksong ~ 2009 LIVE DVD and CD

Ex Tempore ~ 2007 Johnny Irion

From Ex Tempore ~ 2007 Johnny Irion ~ available on 7" Vinyl

Exploration 2005 ~ Johnny and Sarah Lee's latest featuring songs like Holdin Back, Kindness, Mornin's Over, and Dr. King

2001 ~ Johnny's "Unity Lodge" album

Stillhouse - Through the Winter. 2006