The Bowery Presents
John Prine

John Prine

Rosanne Cash with John Leventhal

Fri, September 6, 2013

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

Beacon Theatre

New York, NY

$79.50, $65, $50, $45

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This event is all ages

John Prine
John Prine
Some four decades since his remarkable debut, John Prine has stayed at the top of his game, both as a performer and songwriter. Recently honored at the Library of Congress by US Poet Laureate Ted Kooser, he’s been elevated from the annals of songwriters into the realm of bonafide American treasures.

Long considered a “songwriter’s songwriter,” John Prine is a rare talent who writes the songs other songwriters would sell their souls for. Evidence of this is the long list of songwriters who have recorded gems from his extensive catalog, including Johnny Cash, Bonnie Raitt, the Everly Brothers, John Denver, Kris Kristofferson, Carly Simon, Ben Harper, Joan Baez, and many others.

“He’s so good, we’re gonna have to break his fingers,” Kris Kristofferson once said after being justifiably stunned by a Prine performance. Bob Dylan remarked, “Beautiful songs… Nobody but Prine could write like that.”

But long before these awards and accolades, all the concerts and many, many albums, John Prine trudged through snow in the cold Chicago winters, delivering mail across Maywood, his childhood suburb. “I always likened the mail route to a library with no books,” says John Prine. “I passed the time each day making up these little ditties.”

On October 25th, 2011, Oh Boy Records will release The Singing Mailman Delivers. This two-disc archival release features the earliest studio and live recordings from Prine dating back to 1970, one year before that prolific debut album.

In August 1970, John Prine went to Chicago’s WFMT Studios to be interviewed by Studs Terkel. “I asked after the show if it were possible to stick around and tape all the songs I had written up until then,” Prine continues. These studio recordings were simply and sincerely recorded with Prine’s trademark guitar finger-picking and early vocal style. The disc closes with the unreleased track titled “A Star, A Jewel, And A Hoax,” a brief and whimsical look into an often-overlooked cranny of everyday life.

The live performance was recorded at the Fifth Peg in Chicago in November 1970, where Prine would play three nights a week, while still delivering mail during the day. Prine says, “I still maintain that Chicago winters and postman-hungry dogs finally drove me to songwriting.”

With just his acoustic guitar, some audience banter and a friend on bass, 24-year old Prine takes the live audience through 12 of his classic tunes, a few of which already sound like crowd favorites. “I was just learning how to sing a full set of my songs and still manage to talk in between without getting shot or anything thrown at me,” he admits.

These amateur recordings on The Singing Mailman Delivers truly show Prine as a poet whose consummate songs were refined since inception. Even the then-titled “Great Society Conflict Veteran’s Blues,” his studio and live versions of “Sam Stone,” bestow the listener an intricate sense of understanding and compassion from a humble and unassuming songwriter who wrote such words to pass time on his mail route.
Rosanne Cash with John Leventhal
Rosanne Cash with John Leventhal
The eldest child of Johnny Cash and his first wife, Vivian Liberto, Rosanne Cash joined The Johnny Cash Show at age 18, absorbing her father's influence along with that of his legendary touring show partners Carl Perkins and the Carter Family. In the 30 years since she has released 12 albums including Right or Wrong, Seven Year Ache, Somewhere in the Stars, Rhythm and Romance, King's Record Shop, Interiors, The Wheel, 10 Song Demo, Rules of Travel, Black Cadillac, and most recently, The List

Released last year, The List is Cash's first album of cover songs. The selections and the album's title derive from the list of 100 Essential Country Songs that her father had compiled for her and instructed her to learn when she joined his road show after high school graduation. "I think he was alarmed that I might miss something essential about who he was and who I was," says Cash. "He had a deeply intuitive understanding and overview of every critical juncture in Southern music-Appalachian songs, early folk songs, Delta blues, Southern gospel, right up to modern country music."

She has also recorded 11 No. 1 singles, blurring the genres of country, rock, roots and pop. In 1985 she won the Grammy Award for Best Country Vocal Performance, Female, for her hit "I Don't Know Why You Don't Want Me," and has received nine other nominations. Cash is also an accomplished author. Her most recent book, Composed: A Memoir, came out in 2010.
Venue Information:
Beacon Theatre
2124 Broadway
New York, NY, 10023
http://www.beacontheatre.com/faq/index.html