John Mellencamp Community
January 25, 2015, 07:18:28 pm *
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 on: January 24, 2015, 11:40:25 pm 
Started by Goulcards - Last post by Goulcards
I have never been to a Mellencamp concert, yet back in the early 80's, I had some GREAT seats at Freedom Hall in Louisville for a Mellencamp show and I think he broke his leg and the show was cancelled. So disappointed, but now at 52 I will finally get to see one of my favorite all time rockers.

John, be careful until the show!!  Smiley

 on: January 24, 2015, 02:53:40 pm 
Started by CSIMelissa - Last post by CSIMelissa
I had 2nd row seats and had SUCH a good time.  I haven't danced, screamed and sang that much for a very long time.  I wish I could have thanked John personally with a big hug!

 on: January 24, 2015, 09:55:49 am 
Started by CSIMelissa - Last post by sharonc
I just saw John in Louisville tonight. 2nd row.  One of the most amazing nights of my life.  I didn't catch all of the names of his band he introduced.  Could someone please tell me? Thanks! Fantastic show.  Just as much energy as when I saw him back in 92

Mike Wanchic - Guitar
Andy York - Guitar
Dane Clark - Drums
Jon E Gee - Bass
Troye Kinnett - Accordion/Organ/Piano
Miriam Sturm - Violin

 on: January 24, 2015, 09:54:12 am 
Started by sharonc - Last post by sharonc

John Mellencamp has long explored ideas of community, family and what it means to be an individual within the context — and confines — of those ideas. It’s always been fertile ground, but as he’s gotten older the songs have gained a sense of gravity that resonates with unexpected impact.

Friday night at a sold-out Louisville Palace, the 63-year-old Mellencamp had his share of fun — he’s always been a consummate showman — but there was an underlying richness to his set that was far more impressive.

In song after song he dealt with ideas of community and how our shared experience binds us, even with strangers, in sometimes powerful ways. Then he proceeded to show us, making those ideas manifest.

It was clearly no accident that he opened with “Lawless Times” and “Troubled Man,” introducing in the first song the notion of an unfair world that can overwhelm, and following with one that details the consequences.

“I laughed out loud once, I won’t do that again,” he sang in “Troubled Man,” but there wasn’t defeat in his voice. It sounded more like survival. Then, in a brilliant bit of pacing, he went into “Minutes to Memories,” a 1985 song that deals with similar themes and explicitly about survival.

Because that’s such a beloved song among longtime fans, it brought that idea of community directly and unequivocally into the room. He then had us right where he wanted us, launching into “Small Town,” and it was all over at that moment: The room was his, we were a family of fans, a collection of lawless women and troubled men celebrating a moment when everything felt pretty great despite the long odds.

Mellencamp’s performance wasn’t as hectic as in his arena days but no less assured. He still has plenty of Little Bastard swagger — the fabulous hair doesn’t hurt — and his band was tight and expert without any distracting flashiness. It was, in terms of dynamics, an arena-sized show that has been perfectly scaled down, and the intimacy made it perhaps an even better experience.

Opening act Carlene Carter was all about the intimacy. She performed alone for most of her short set, and her compelling voice and out-sized personality made it feel as if she were sitting in your lap.

Her set was heavy on material from her most recent album, “Carter Girl,” a collection of songs first recorded by The Carter Family beginning in the late 1920s. The Carter family was ground zero for country music as we know it, and Carter carried the weight of that immense legacy with an easy grace and rich humanity.

 on: January 23, 2015, 11:06:52 pm 
Started by CSIMelissa - Last post by CSIMelissa
I just saw John in Louisville tonight. 2nd row.  One of the most amazing nights of my life.  I didn't catch all of the names of his band he introduced.  Could someone please tell me? Thanks! Fantastic show.  Just as much energy as when I saw him back in 92

 on: January 22, 2015, 01:46:36 pm 
Started by kicker - Last post by bradsanders56
Classic rock stations are even more repetitive and boring than top 40, they're useless, haven't listened to one for more than five minutes at a time for more than two decades.

 Grin Grin

 on: January 22, 2015, 12:24:58 pm 
Started by walktall2010 - Last post by sipeswoman
Brilliant concert.  The arrangements of older favorites made them flow with the overall arc and gave emphasis to the poetry inside the songs.  The band was spot on and the rhythm of moods was engaging.  6th Mellencamp concert with my 25 year old daughter- who agreed this was the finest concert either of us have been to.
Thank you band and John for a moving and rousing night celebrating the full catastrophe of life.

 on: January 22, 2015, 10:45:50 am 
Started by walktall2010 - Last post by cge333
Looks like a great set list.  A good mix of hits and songs that may not be well known (outside of the diehards) and a mix of new and old.  I am not seeing him until the CA/AZ/CO shows in July but I'd be happy if this is the same set list he plays at those shows.

 on: January 22, 2015, 07:35:30 am 
Started by walktall2010 - Last post by walktall2010
Mellencamp reclaims Morris stage to open tour
By ANDREW S. HUGHES South Bend Tribune

SOUTH BEND — The last time John Mellencamp visited the Morris Performing Arts Center, he sat in the audience for a performance of the musical he wrote with Stephen King, “Ghost Brothers of Darkland County.”

That was Nov. 5, 2013, and on Wednesday night, he reclaimed his rightful place on the theater’s stage with an ultimately celebratory 102-minute performance to open his 80-date “Plain Spoken” tour.

But even though he ended the concert with a string of his major hits accompanied by an enthused audience singing along with him, Mellencamp returned to the Morris with serious matters on his mind — and the determination to remain vital as an artist.

With 2008’s “Life, Death, Love and Freedom,” 2010’s “No Better Than This” and the September release of “Plain Spoken,” Mellencamp has delivered three of the finest albums of his career, a remarkable and rare accomplishment for a 63-year-old rock musician.

And the theme that links these three albums — taking account of and responsibility for one’s life — provided the narrative for Wednesday’s set list.

“Lawless Times” and “Troubled Man” from “Plain Spoken” opened the concert, the former a jaunty political work delivered with a growling voice and the latter a blues-based tale of acceptance.

“The Isolation of Mister,” also from “Plain Spoken,” shone not as a song of regret but of recognition.

Similarly, “Longest Days,” softly strummed by Mellencamp while guitarist Andy York accompanied him with finger-picking, received a moving delivery that was neither wistful nor sentimental, just honest. Mellencamp’s gravelly voice gave the song a somber feeling, but he was still capable of producing a sweet tone, as on the title phrase.

Through the first three-fourths of the concert, Mellencamp did a good job of parceling out the hits so that most casual fans wouldn’t become restless while choosing familiar songs that fit thematically with his new ones, even if that meant altering their arrangements.

Such hits as “Minutes to Memories,” “Small Town” and “Check It Out,” for instance, provided the first half of the concert with recognizable, higher-energy, sing-along material that also fit lyrically with Mellencamp’s new songs.

But he performed “Jack and Diane” at the midpoint of the show as a solo acoustic number, albeit with the audience accompanying him, especially on the chorus and bridge.

Mellencamp seemed to enjoy himself as he delivered the song as a fond recollection rather than from the urgency of being in the moment, a smart move that allows him to avoid embarrassing himself by pretending to be a teenager at his age.

“The Full Catastrophe” provided the set with a thematically appropriate rarity, a rarely played song performed as a slow piano blues by Troye Kinnett with Mellencamp delivering it with a tinge of menace that suggested its narrator isn’t yet done living — or making mistakes — despite its valedictory-pitched lyric.

After a forceful rendition of 2008’s “If I Die Sudden,” Mellencamp turned the last quarter of the concert over to crowd-pleasers in familiar arrangements — “Crumbling Down,” “R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A. (A Salute to 60’s Rock),” “Pink Houses” and “Cherry Bomb.”

After about 85 minutes of ruminating on the past, its consequences and costs, mortality, and the death of the small farm (an angry “Rain on the Scarecrow”), these four songs provided a necessary cathartic release for the audience and the band, the kind that comes only from a rock band playing with maximum passion and communal bonding with the audience.

Just as Bruce Springsteen built much of his sound around Clarence Clemons’ saxophone, Mellencamp has done the same with the violinists who have been in his band, beginning with Mishawaka native Lisa Germano in the ’80s and with Miriam Sturm for more than 16 years now.

Throughout the night, Sturm’s violin served as the band’s lead instrument, whether as a soloist — scathing on “Rain on the Scarecrow,” symbiotic with Kinnett’s organ on “Small Town” — or conveying a song’s motif behind and around Mellencamp’s vocals.

She and Kinnett also performed a captivating violin-accordion duet on “Overture,” a medley of themes from Mellencamp’s songs, with this one concentrating on material from “Mr. Happy Go Lucky” and “Real Life,” although they also incorporated “I Need a Lover” into the arrangement, too.

But York also provided important texture and depth with his occasional and brief solos and, more importantly, with his fills and picked chord voicings.

Opening act Carlene Carter joined Mellencamp for two songs from “Ghost Brothers,” which she performed in recently on a tour of the production.

She sang “Away From This World,” slipping easily into character with a gorgeous vocal interpretation, and then dueted with Mellencamp on the chorus for “Tear This Cabin Down,” an apocalyptic blues-rock song whose syncopated rhythm gave it a sense of hesitation and dread.

As the opening act, Carter delivered a 33-minute set that provided the perfect complement to Mellencamp’s: an acoustic, steeped-in-roots country performance highlighted by spirited renditions of “Every Little Thing” and “Little Black Train,” her loving delivery on “Me and the Wildwood Rose,” and “Lonesome Valley 2003,” a song of love and loss that she wrote about the death of her mother, June Carter Cash, and that manages at the same time to be universal and specific, its lyrics, melody and delivery honest and without a trace of sentimentality.

For this opening-night performance, both Mellencamp and Carter came out confident and purposeful, ready for the 79 dates ahead to mine the roots of American music and investigate what it means to live and die.

John Mellencamp
Morris Performing Arts Center, South Bend
Jan. 21, 2015

1. Lawless Times
2. Troubled Man
3. Minutes to Memories
4. Small Town
5. Stones in My Passway
6. Human Wheels
7. The Isolation of Mister
8. Check It Out
9. Longest Days
10. Jack and Diane
11. The Full Catastrophe
12. Away From This World (sung by Carlene Carter)
13. Tear This Cabin Down (with Carlene Carter)
14. Overture
15. Rain on the Scarecrow
16. Paper in Fire
17. If I Die Sudden
18. Crumbling Down
19. R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A. (A Salute to 60’s Rock)
20. Pink Houses
21. Cherry Bomb

 on: January 21, 2015, 10:51:03 pm 
Started by walktall2010 - Last post by walktall2010
Video here:

Q: Is that why you chose to cover John Cougar Mellencamp’s “Paper In Fire” for your session?

A: One of my favourite records when I was a kid was The Lonesome Jubilee. I loved glam metal and hard rock in the ’80s but I think that was the first folk-fusion album I’d ever heard. I always enjoyed John Cougar Mellencamp but then that album came out and it was the same band except the accordion was the lead instrument. I thought that was astounding. At a time when every record had a shredding guitarist, Paper in Fire had a gal playing the fiddle in a really rocking song. I’ve never heard another song like it.

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