June 7, 2007
Bluegrass Legend Ralph Stanley to perform at MASS MoCA
(North Adams, Mass.) At 80 Ralph Stanley is far from slowing down. Known for recording songs for over 170 country and bluegrass albums and performing in more than 100 shows each year, Stanley will grace the Courtyard C stage at MASS MoCA on Saturday, July 7, at 8 PM. The Chicago Sun Times terms him "undeniably the most important figure in bluegrass music today."
Sixty one years after his start in the music business audiences are still returning to see Stanley because of his performances. "Then there was Stanley, today's Elvis of traditional music. With his hands casually clasped at his waist, he filled the theater with his plaintive plea against dying, O Death, whose solemn lyrics he magically makes uplifting," said The Denver Post of one of his recent performances. The Philadelphia Inquirer adds, "He just gave his plainspoken all, moving the air in the room like a man who can't shake sorrow but still yearns for the light."
Credited with inspiring an eclectic group of recording artists, including Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Dwight Yoakam, Vince Gil, Jerry Garcia, Patty Loveless, and John Anderson, Stanley has been a principal player in the bluegrass scene for more than 60 years. His stature is reflected in the many accolades he has received, including three Grammys and six nominations, membership in the Grand Ole Opry, the Library of Congress's Living Legend medal, the National Endowment for the Arts's National Heritage Fellowship presented by President Ronald Reagan, Country Music Association and Academy of Country Music Album of the Year awards, and an honorary Doctorate of Music from Lincoln Memorial University.
Stanley began his long career in music with his older brother Carter, forming The Stanley Brothers and the Clinch Mountain Boys in 1946. After the death of his brother, Ralph toyed with the idea of giving up music, but ultimately decided to carry on what he and Carter had created together. In recent years Stanley received renewed attention after he recorded one of his most popular songs, O Death, for the sensationally popular film O Brother, Where Art Thou? in 2000. Among his newest projects is the full-length album A Distant Land to Roam: Songs of the Carter Family, on which Stanley performs 13 songs popularized by A.P Carter, his wife Sara and her cousin Maybelle.
Tickets for Ralph Stanley are $22 in advance/ $26 day of show. MASS MoCA members receive a 10% discount. Tickets are available through the MASS MoCA Box Office located off Marshall Street in North Adams, open from 11 A.M. to 5 P.M. Wednesday through Monday (June 30 through September 4, from 10 A.M. until 6 P.M. daily). Tickets can also be charged by phone by calling 413.662.2111 during Box Office hours or purchased on line at www.massmoca.org.
MASS MoCA, the largest center for contemporary visual and performing arts in the United States, is located off Marshall Street in North Adams on a 13-acre campus of renovated 19th-century factory buildings.
For Immediate Release
Contact: Katherine Myers
(413) 664-4481 x8113
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