Mountain Stage Presents Robert Earl Keen, 1/20

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Mountain Stage Presents Robert Earl Keen, 1/20

Mountain Stage presents Robert Earl Keen, January 20, 2013 at 7 pm. Doors open at 6:30. Advance tickets are $18 or day of the show $23. Call 304.293.SHOW, or visit: http://www.mountainstage.org/mtnstageevent.aspx?id=27062 for more information.

One of the nation's finest musical storytellers, Robert Earl Keen bridged the gap between country and folk, setting the stage for a style that became known as alt-country. Over his three-decade career, the much-loved Texas singer/songwriter's songs have been recorded by artists including Lyle Lovett, Nanci Griffith, George Strait, Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, and the Dixie Chicks. In 1994, "Gringo Honeymoon" telegraphed the upcoming Americana genre, combining Keen's story songs with a band led by Austin guitarist Gurf Morlix.Thanks to a connection fostered by Cowboy Junkies' singer Margo Timmins Keen's "Picnic" CD was produced by John Keane (R.E.M., Indigo Girls) in Athens, GA. Keen also produced the influential annual concert series and talent festival, "Texas Uprising," which took place at several venues around Texas and the Far West. "Ready For Confetti," released in 2011, is the second project produced by veteran Lloyd Maines. Keen wrote nine of the 11 songs while on the road - a first - performing 180 dates a year. The disc reached the No. 1 slot on the Americana chart and was listed as one of author Stephen King's "2011 Pop Culture Favorites" in Entertainment Weekly. A favorite of both music lovers and beer drinkers, Keen's shows are often cross-promoted by beer and liquor distributors. "They are a steady, loyal crowd," the press release says of beer drinkers. "And if they find out that Robert Earl is coming to perform at your establishment, I think we might be surprised at the buzz we can create."

Shelby Lynne - A passionate singer who is at home in a variety of genres, Shelby Lynne has had a long, storied career. In 2001, when she won a Grammy for "Best New Artist," she had already released six albums and had been recording for more than a decade. Growing up in Alabama, Lynne's life took a tragic turn when, at age 17, both her parents died. After marrying and moving to Nashville, Lynne recorded some demo songs and appeared on TNN's "Nashville Now" series. That appearance led to a duet with George Jones, 1988's Top 50 hit "If I Could Bottle This Up," and a record deal with Epic. After three successful country releases, she issued the Western Swing and big band styled "Temptation" and 2000's appropriately titled "I am Shelby Lynne" that helped her break through to the roots rock/alt-country audience. In 2008, she recorded "Just a Little Lovin'," a gorgeous tribute to Dusty Springfield. In 2010, Lynne appeared as Peter Wolf's duet partner on the single "Tragedy" and released her own "Tears, Lies and Alibis," penning all the disc's songs. Later that year, she issued her first holiday collection, "Merry Christmas." Her latest release, "Revelation Road," was awarded four stars by American Songwriter and MOJO.

Rhett Miller - The front man and main songwriter of the hard-charging, rock 'n' roll quartet the Old 97's, Texas native Rhett Miller is also an accomplished solo artist. In addition to his nine studio albums with the 97's, he has released four solo albums. In addition to his music being featured in countless films and television shows, Miller has appeared in an episode of the NBC hit series "30 Rock" and the Old 97's were prominently featured in the Vince Vaughn/Jennifer Aniston romantic comedy, "The Break Up." Primarily known for his songwriting and inspiring live performances, Rhett is also a critically-acclaimed author whose work has appeared in several books and such well-known periodicals as "Rolling Stone," "McSweeney's," and "The Atlantic." After issuing a live recording of his favorite cover songs, it titled "The Interpreter Live at Largo," he released "The Dreamer" in 2012.

Black Prairie - Comprised of Decemberists' members Chris Funk, Nate Query and Jenny Conlee, and fellow Portland musicians Annalisa Tornfelt and Jon Neufeld, Black Prairie came together as a way for the musicians to explore instrumental string band music during The Decemberists' downtime. Now a full-fledged group, the band's new release, "A Tear in the Eye is a Wound in the Heart," takes on styles ranging from harmony-laden pop to Band-influenced Americana, bluegrass and old time string band music. The release follows up the band's debut, "Feast of the Hunters' Moon." In early 2012, Black Prairie collaborated with the Oregon Children's Theatre, composing music for the play "The Storm in the Barn." The group's "Singers" EP series features collaborations with singer/songwriters including The Shins' James Mercer, Sallie Ford, Martha Scanlan and Langhorne Slim.

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