John Prine Reviews
Steve Fagan from Indianapolis, Indiana
PRINE STILL STRONG AT 72
i am a long-time Prine fan, but I am also a realist and not much of a mindless fawner over any of my favorite entertainers. I don't just will-nilly hand out glowing reviews and I have to say that I cam to the John Prine concert at Clowes Hall on the campus of Butler University in Indianapolis oh May 12 expect to see a Prine sufferring the symptoms of age and his bout with cancer. The last time I saw hin, his was the opening act fo the Avett Brothers at Red Rocks outiside of Denver more than two years ago and he's been through a lot since then. But, Prine performance at Clowes was not in the least bit dimnished by time or his health. OK, he wasn't the Prine I first saw back in the early 70s, but his voice and his energy where both still very stong for the Clowes performance. He thrilled the audience with a mix of some of his really wonderful old tunes such as Hello In There, Sam Stone, and Angel From Montgomery and songs from Tree of Forgiveness -- his first new album ih 13 years .
Boe. From Florida from Cincinnati, Ohio
Seeing John for the third time. It still brings me back to the first time I was turned onto him in 1979 in the barracks in Germany when I was in the Army from my friend from Detroit. I loved his music then, and even love it more now. Almost 40 years later. There will never be another John Prine .
Syd from Norfolk, Virginia
PRIME PRINE!! (AGAIN)
Been a longtime fan, and I was excited to drive the 4+ hours from my home in Wilmington NC to Norfolk to attend this show. I really didn't expect the vigor of the old days, but the show Mr. Prine put together was simply stellar. His piano, bass, mando players --- everyone was spot on and nobody ran over anyone else (which is nice, especially when you have an electric on stage!).. So on to the music. Mr. Prine came out with some oldies mixed with the Tree of Forgiveness cuts, and really captured the essence of his soul with 'Come On Home', 'Tree of Forgiveness' and the rest. His solo numbers, with no band backup, were wonderful, and his last number, 'Paradise', an oldie from his breakout album, frankly brought tears to my eyes as I remember pounding on my $100-dollar Alvarez back in the day.... This is a MUST-SEE event for anyone interested in Americana music.
Dirk V from Chicago, Illinois
AGED BUT STILL GOING STRONG.
I travelled from Toronto to attend the Chicago show April 27, 2018. This excellent venue was sold out and anxious for the show. As usual John Prine introduced us to some music we would probably never experience through warm up act , Milk Carton Boys. They were a cross between Simon and Garfunkle and the Smothers Brothers when they were at their best. Very skilled guitarists and singers. The Prine show was really great. The gravelly voice was evident but didn't deter anyone from enjoying the show. Great song selection and one fantastic band. If John Prine is in your vicinity get to the show while he is still performing so well. One unfortunate distraction was the catcalling from the audience, mostly at inappropriate times. One woman in particular should have been escorted out of the facility.
Stephen from Dallas, Texas
I came to see John in remembrance of my older brother that died 2 years ago, He was a working musician until mental illness claimed his life. He came off tour one time and gave me a copy of Diamonds in the Rough. He told me, “Since you like Springsteen and Mellencamp, you need to listen to this guy,” I happily obliged and never looked back. I wished he had been here to see Mr. Prine last night. I still listen to “Missing Years” much to the chagrin of many around me that don’t get it. I know that my brother resides down the block inside at 23 Skidoo. I can visit him whenever I listen to John. I saw his face and felt his spirit when John sang “Souvenirs.” It was a good show. I cried and walked back into the world not knowing quite where it would lead me.
Hank from Indianapolis, Indiana
I first saw John Prine in 1978. This show was epic. He is the classic showman. A pleasing blend of his new release and past greats. His solo mix mid show was bonding and warming. The fans who thought they were cute and funny with their need for special requests were annoying as hell. You’re stupid. Prine’s putdown to them was. “Go to McDonald’s if you to order” was classic. Great show from a true entertainer. Keep on keepin on my man
Tim Triplett from Slidell, Louisiana
JOHN PRINE, FEBRUARY 2, 2028
The story I heard was that John Prine’s older brother taught him three chords and he never bothered to learn anymore. That’s certainly an exaggeration but he has arpeggiated those three chords into a 50 year career. Last night at the beautiful Orpheum Theater, in downtown New Orleans, it seemed like it was cold and rainy outside and I was sitting in my living room,with a fire, reminiscing with old friends; those friends were songs from Prine’s 50 year old catalogue. He started with Aimless Love then played the meat from Fair and Square. Then it was back and forth through time for the rest of the evening. I tend to get wordy with these things so I want to, briefly, point out the highlights . Margo Price was strong and clever as she opened, backed by her husband. She joined John later in the show for classics In Spite Of Ourselves and Unwed Fathers. Multi musician Fats Kaplin is a new addition to the band introduced as having come aboard for the last couple of shows. He played mandolin, guitars, acoustic and electric, pedal steel, violin and a button accordion in deference to the Cajun heritage in the audience. They played Bruised Orange with Fats backing on that squeeze box; it was different, it was nice. So JP pulled from that aforementioned 50 year old song list to a point that he seemed he was going to play them all. He paused, though, to sing a couple of new ones from the album due out in a couple of months. A friend described the song about Pluto’s humiliation as “Prine ish”. The chorus is the best part of the song and it is catchy and, you know, “Prine ish”. He has, however, written a Grammy contender with “Summer’s End”. Taken in it’s proper context, imho, this song is a beautiful plea for a loved one to “come on home”. As he has done so many times in those last 50 years, John has nailed an emotion that we all have, or will have, encountered in our lives. To ask a loved one, or be invited by a loved one, to “come on home”. Thanks again JP, thanks for the soul.
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