Special Guests
Saturday, November 15, 2008

Emmylou Harris

Born in Alabama and raised in North Carolina and Virginia, Emmylou Harris began playing the guitar at 16. A few years later, she recorded her first album, Gliding Bird. In the early 1970s, she moved to Los Angeles and teamed up with Gram Parsons, with whom she made two recordings. After Parsons' death in 1973, Harris made her major-label debut, Pieces of the Sky. Now, with dozens of albums and countless awards, including 12 Grammys, she maintains a widespread and loyal following. Her latest CD is All I Intended to Be (Nonesuch Records). Rickie Simpkins (fiddle, mandolin), Phil Madeira guitar, keyboards), and Chris Donohue (bass).

John Koerner

"Spider" John Koerner has influenced musicians from Bonnie Raitt to Bob Dylan, not to mention thousands of traditional music fans who've been drawn to his songs, his guitar playing, and his humor for more than four decades. With Dave Ray and Tony Glover, Koerner was at the forefront of the 1960's folk-blues scene. Albums the trio did back then — Blues, Rags and Hollers, The Return of Koerner, Ray & Glover, etc. — are still favorites, and John continues to put his distinctive spin on songs, familiar and obscure. His many solo albums include StarGeezer and Raised By Humans, both on the Red House label.

Andra Suchy

Andra, who spent her childhood on a North Dakota farm, has performed and recorded with numerous bands. Her solo CD is called Patchwork Story.

Guy's All-Star Shoe Band

The Guy's All-Star Shoe Band is led by A Prairie Home Companion music director Richard Dworsky. A keyboard master with an arsenal of ideas, he has worked with artists from Al Jarreau to Kristin Chenoweth to the Hopeful Gospel Quartet. His latest CD is So Near and Dear to Me (Prairie Home Productions).

Chet Atkins called Pat Donohue (guitar) one of the greatest finger pickers in the world today. And he writes songs too — recorded by Suzy Bogguss, Kenny Rogers and others. Freewayman (Bluesky Records) is the most recent of Pat's nine albums.

Gary Raynor (bass) has performed with the Count Basie band, Sammy Davis Jr. — with whom he toured for several years — and the Minnesota Klezmer Band. He teaches jazz bass at the McNally Smith College of Music in St. Paul.

Peter Johnson (percussion) has played klezmer music with Doc Severinsen and jazz with Dave Brubeck. He was a drummer for The Manhattan Transfer and for Gene Pitney. He has toured the world, but he always comes back to home base: Saint Paul.

Guitarist Dan Neale moves easily from blues and country to pop, jazz and rock. A Tennessee native who moved to Minnesota because "I married a woman who hates hot weather," this sought-after studio player and sideman has worked with Martin Zellar, Bobby Vee and a host of others.

Old Sweet Songs: A Prairie Home Companion 1974-1976

Old Sweet Songs

Lovingly selected from the earliest archives of A Prairie Home Companion, this heirloom collection represents the music from earliest years of the now legendary show: 1974–1976. With songs and tunes from jazz pianist Butch Thompson, mandolin maestro Peter Ostroushko, Dakota Dave Hull and the first house band, The Powdermilk Biscuit Band (Adam Granger, Bob Douglas and Mary DuShane).

Available now»

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