John Prine


John Prine

Infobox musical artist
Name = John Prine

|right|framed
Img_capt = Prine performing at the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in San Francisco, CA, October 3, 2004.
Background = solo_singer
Born = birth date and age|1946|10|10
Died =
Origin = Maywood, Illinois,
United States
Instrument = Vocals
Guitar
Genre = Country
Folk
Progressive bluegrass
Occupation = Singer-songwriter
Guitarist
Years_active = 1971 — Present
Label = Atlantic, Asylum,
"Oh Boy", Rhino
Associated_acts = Steve Goodman
URL = [http://www.johnprine.net/ www.johnprine.net]

John Prine (born October 10, 1946, in Maywood, Illinois) is a Grammy Award-winning American country/folk singer-songwriter who has achieved widespread critical (and some commercial) success since the early 1970s.

Biography

Prine is the son of William Prine and Verna Hamm. It is widely believed, but untrue, that his grandfather played guitar with Merle Travis. Prine himself started playing guitar at age 14. He was a postman for five years and served in the Army before beginning his musical career in Chicago.

Prine emerged in 1971 with a highly-acclaimed debut album titled "John Prine". He and friend Steve Goodman had each been stars in the Chicago folk scene before being "discovered" by Kris Kristofferson. The album included his signature songs "Illegal Smile", "Sam Stone", and the folk and country standards "Angel from Montgomery" and "Paradise." The album also included "Hello In There", a song about aging that was later covered by numerous artists and "Far From Me," a lonely waltz about lost love for a waitress that Prine later said was his favorite of all his songs. The album received many positive reviews, and some hailed Prine as "the next Dylan." Bob Dylan himself appeared unannounced at one of Prine's first New York City club appearances, anonymously backing him on harmonica.

Later albums include "Sweet Revenge" (1973), containing such fan favorites as "Dear Abby", "Grandpa Was A Carpenter" and "Christmas In Prison", and "Common Sense" (1975), with "Come Back to Us Barbara Lewis Hare Krishna Beauregard". The latter album was Prine's first to be charted in the US top 100 by "Billboard", reflecting growing commercial success. Many veteran Prine fans view the release of 1978's "Bruised Orange" as a creative highpoint. The Steve Goodman-produced album gave listeners songs such as "The Hobo Song", "Sabu Visits the Twin Cities Alone" and the title track showing that he could capture the human condition as easily as writing politically-inspired anthems.

In 1991, Prine released the Grammy Award-winning "The Missing Years", his first collaboration with producer and Heartbreakers bassist Howie Epstein. The title song records Prine's humorous take on what Jesus did in the unrecorded years between his childhood and his ministry. In 1995, "Lost Dogs and Mixed Blessings" was released, another collaboration with Epstein. Prine followed in 1999 with "In Spite of Ourselves", which was unusual for him in that it contained only one original song - the rest were covers of classic country songs - and all were duets with well-known female country vocalists, including Lucinda Williams,Emmylou Harris, Dolores Keane and Iris DeMent. (John referred to them as his "favorite girl singers".)

In early 1998, Prine was diagnosed with throat cancer and underwent surgery to remove the tumor followed by radiation therapy. [http://www.jpshrine.org/john_prine_letter.html] . Some of Prine's listeners believe that the surgery has added "gravel" to his voice. [http://home.mchsi.com/~rburhead/2005/05concertreviews_IL.htm] In 2003, he was given a Lifetime Achievement Award for songwriting by the UK's BBC Radio 2 and that same year was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame. The following year saw his classic "Sam Stone" covered by Laura Cantrell for the Future Soundtrack for America compilation.

In 2005, Prine released his first all-new offering since "In Spite of Ourselves", the album "Fair & Square", which tended toward a more laid-back, acoustic approach than, for example, "Lost Dogs and Mixed Blessings". The album contains songs such as "Safety Joe", about a man who has never taken any risks in his life, and also "Some Humans Ain't Human", Prine's protest piece on the album, which talks about the ugly side of human nature and includes a quick shot at President George W. Bush. "Fair & Square" won the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Folk Album. The album contains original songs plus two covers: A.P. Carter's "Bear Creek Blues" and Blaze Foley's "Clay Pigeons."

Prine received the Artist of the Year award at the Americana Music Awards on September 9th, 2005. The award was accepted in his name by awards host and long-time friend Billy Bob Thornton.

His song "Storm Windows" appears on 4 CDs ["Storm Windows", "Great Days" (CD2), "Live On Tour", "Souvenirs"] and is track seven on all four of the CDs. Fact|date=March 2008

Discography

*"John Prine" (1971), Atlantic - SD-8296; 2-72, #154 (includes "Angel from Montgomery")
*"Diamonds in the Rough" (1972), Atlantic - SD-7240; 10-72, #148
*"Sweet Revenge" (1973), Atlantic - SD-7274; 11-73, #135
*"Common Sense" (1975), Atlantic
*"Prime Prine: The Best Of John Prine" (1976), Atlantic
*"Bruised Orange" (1978), Asylum
*"Pink Cadillac" (1979), Asylum
*"Storm Windows" (1980), Asylum
*"Aimless Love" (1984), Oh Boy
*"German Afternoons" (1986), Oh Boy
*"John Prine Live" (1988), Oh Boy
*"The Missing Years" (1991), Oh Boy
*"" (1993), Rhino
*"A John Prine Christmas" (1993), Oh Boy
*"Lost Dogs and Mixed Blessings" (1995), Oh Boy
*"Live on Tour" (1997), Oh Boy
*"In Spite of Ourselves" (1999), Oh Boy
*"Souvenirs" (2000), Oh Boy
*"Fair & Square" (2005), Oh Boy
*"Standard Songs For Average People" (2007), Oh Boy - with Mac Wiseman

External links

* [http://www.johnprine.net/ Official John Prine Website]
* [http://www.jpshrine.org/ John Prine Shrine - Official John Prine fan site]
* [http://www.jpshrine.org/picshow/paradise/paradise.html A Pictorial Trip to John Prine's Paradise, KY]
* [http://www.loc.gov/today/cyberlc/feature_wdesc.php?rec=3677 "A Literary Evening with John Prine and Ted Kooser." March 9, 2005. The Poetry and Literature Center at the Library of Congress.]
* [http://www.kyndmusic.com/monthlyissues/sept05/prine.htm Interview with John Prine] - KyndMusic, September 2005
* [http://www.johnprine.net/exclusives.html 1971 Radio Interview with John Prine on WGLD Oak Park] - fr JOHNPRINE.NET
*imdb name|0697789


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