Al Aumuller, photographer. NYWT&S staff photograph via Wikimedia Commons
1. Woody Guthrie: The original folk singer/songwriter extraordinaire, Guthrie set a precedent for the breadth of issues and subjects about which an American folk singer could sing. His original tunes often put to work traditional melodies, as well as melodies to songs that were popular at the time. His lyrics encapsulated all the important issues of his time, and America in general, in plain and straightforward language that put words to what so many people were thinking and feeling.