John McEuen and the String Wizards

Apr 26 2019 - 7:30pm
Four-time Grammy Award Winner and Founding Member of Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

 

General Admission $30, $25 (Opera House Members), $15 (Students)
Folk in Fredonia Music Series 

John McEuen and his unique cast of iconic Americana string wizards share the music and memories of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band’s incredible 50-year career and its landmark Will the Circle Be Unbroken platinum album, initiated by John.  With narrative and early NGDB music, McEuen takes us on the band's incredible journey interwoven with Nitty Gritty favorites, hot bluegrass, rarely heard early classics, and Carter Family music, all in a multimedia presentation that features archival footage.  Add to that new selections from his latest album, Made in Brooklyn.

McEuen helped found the NGDB in 1966.  In October of 2017, following the band's 50th anniversary tour, McEuen left the group to pursue his own tour dates and projects, which include this special multimedia concert.

In 1971, McEuen initiated what Rolling Stone called "the most important record to come out of Nashville" and what the 2004 ZAGAT survey called "the most important record in country music" - Will the Circle be Unbroken.  The platinum-selling album was inducted into the Library of Congress in 2004 and the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2011 as a historic recording.

In 1977, the NGDB became the first American band to tour the then Soviet Union.  With 28 sold out shows, the tour included a televised broadcast reaching 130 million people.  The band and its tour are featured in 2017's Free to Rock documentary about how American music helped bring down the Iron Curtain.

John McEuen and the String WizardsJohn McEuen and the String Wizards

McEuen is a four-time Grammy winner: in 2004 for Best Country Instrumental with special guests Earl Scruggs; in 2009 when Mr. Bojangles was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame as a historic recording; in 2010 as producer for Steve Martin's Best Bluegrass Album The Crow, and 2011's Hall of Fame induction for Will the Circle be Unbroken.  He recently was inducted into the American Banjo Museum Hall of Fame; and Deering Banjos made a special "John McEuen" model in his honor.

McEuen has performed continually for more than five decades.  He has performed more than 9,500 concerts, and traveled more than 3 million miles to do it.  He has appeared on more than 300 television shows, both with NGDB and solo; recorded more than 40 albums that have earned four platinum and five gold recognitions; won Grammy, Country Music Association, American Country Music, and International Bluegrass Music Association awards; received an Emmy nomination; and performed as guest artist on 25 other noted artist's albums.

In all of this, he has influenced some of today's most acclaimed artists:  "I went to see the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band in college at Gallagher Arena.  A bunch of guys in the dorm pooled our monies together and threw in an extra buck to pay one of the guys to sleep out for tickets.  We got front row seats!  We were having the time of our lives when during a fiddle solo, John McEuen leaped over the monitors and past the edge of that stage and landed in between John Mathiason and me.  McEuen never missed a lick of that solo!  THAT MOMENT is forever etched in my soul!" -- Garth Brooks, 2014