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March 6, 2009 John Prine at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, Milwaukee, WI. - Special Guest: Iris DeMent. Back Up Musicians: Jason Wilber & Dave Jacques


By: Dave Tianen of the Journal Sentinel

Article here -
   Clever, timely Prine again proves he knows Midwesterners
    Posted: Mar. 7, 2009
    It is not exactly a community habit hereabouts to warmly embrace sons of the Windy City.
    But there is one old mail man from Chicago who always gets a pass. We love John Prine.
   At the end of her opening set for Prine on Friday night at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, Iris Dement explained part of it. Prine, she said, "is as good a fella as you think he is."
   That is obviously part of what makes Prine special. Perhaps more to the point, Prine has an articulate and kind heart. Many talented people came out of the 1960s and '70s folk movement, but it would be difficult to think of anyone who is more in touch with the sorrows, joys and simple humanity of ordinary Midwesterners than Prine.
   The Prine songbook is a kind of poetic community of ordinary people struggling with issues we all recognize. We know people like them, and Friday was a chance go get reacquainted.
   There's the retired factory worker isolated by old age in "Hello In There." There is the traumatized vet-turned-junkie in "Sam Stone." There are once young lovers now trying to repair a middle-aged marriage in "Lake Marie." There are the lonely outcasts on the sidelines of the dating game in "Donald and Lydia." And it doesn't hurt that Prine is as regular looking as he is gifted. There isn't a nip of glamour or show business about him.
   It is perhaps a small thing, but Prine captures a Midwestern sense of place. There are lots of songs about the Southland. The Eagles, Jackson Browne and others have documented California in song, but the Midwest belongs to John Prine.
   There's the Wisconsin borderline park of "Lake Marie," and the North Woods haven of "Crazy Like a Loon." Prine even has a song just for us - "Milwaukee Here I Come."
   Prine also is one of the funniest songwriters in active practice. In "Crazy As a Loon," he is both timely and clever.
   "I headed up to New York City; Where a man can make some loot; I got hired Monday morning; Downsized that afternoon."
John Prine and Iris DeMent duet in Milwaukee, WI Marcus Center March 2009   When he wants to, Prine can craft a vivid metaphor. There's that line from "Angel From Montgomery":
   "If dreams were lightning and thunder was desire; This old house would have burnt down a long time ago."
   But Prine also has the courage to be goofy. "Please Don't Bury Me" must surely be the only song written about organ donation: "Give me feet to the footloose; Careless, fancy free; Give my knees to the needy; Don't pull that stuff on me."
   Let's put it in Milwaukee terms. A lot of musicians are charismatic, dazzling, sexy and dangerous. But if you wanted to pick a talented guy to have a beer with, it would be tough to top Prine.

By: Carol
I'm just sharing my excitement. I'm one of a group of 3 sisters from Manitowoc WI that have taken in quite a few Prine shows in recent years ( and some we took in a Long time ago) Every time I see a show I think the same thing...It doesn't get any better!!! Iris, Jason, David and John are Fantastic. Any one that isn't familiar with their music is missing out on such treasures in this life! We met up with other Prine fans, some old friends, some new friends. That's a really great part of enjoying Prine music too. It was the greatest!!! Faddy and Andy, part of the road crew-always good to say hello to them, too. Until the next show-Carol



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