July 13, 2005
Loudon Wainwright Performs at MASS MoCA's Courtyard Café on Sat. August 13
(North Adams, Mass.)-- Known for humorous and nakedly honest autobiographical songs, Loudon Wainwright's wit and engaging stage persona have made him a cult figure and a concert favorite in a long and prolific career spanning from the 1960's straight through to today. He'll light up MASS MoCA's popular outdoor performance space, Courtyard C, with a special concert on Saturday, August 13, at 8 P.M. The New York Times says: "If his songs mock the conventions of folk music, his niche may be as the ultimate contemporary folkie."
According to the Boston Phoenix, Wainwright's "songs are almost too smart for their own good. They're too easy to be art. His first and only hit single, 1973's Dead Skunk, was as famous for the amount of time it took Wainwright to compose (15 minutes) as for the catchy mix of melody and rhyme. The same holds true for Wainwright in his confessional/autobiographical mode. He'll write about slapping his daughter, visiting his mother in the hospital, or the death of his father -- and deliver compelling story-songs in his easy tenor. You listen as a song accumulates details and emotional heft -- the red mark left by his hand on his daughter's thigh, the sight of his father's shoes in the closet, the hospital gift shop -- and only in retrospect do you realize how far he's taken you in a sung narrative of rhyming verse."
Wainwright became a folk singer/songwriter in the late '60s, released his first album in 1970, and had his first hit Dead Skunk in '73. His songs are frequently recorded by others, notably Kate and Anna McGarrigle. Wainwright appeared in the off-Broadway show Pump Boys and Dinettes and even played a featured role on the M*A*S*H television series. In 1999, Social Studies, a collection of topical, humorous songs Wainwright had been composing since the late '80s for National Public Radio, was released; and the following year, The BBC Sessions collected favorites and new compositions. Wainwright's most recent work includes the live album So Damn Happy in 2003 and his most recent studio album, Here Come the Choppers, which was released in 2005.
The concert will be moved inside to the museum's Hunter Center in the event of rain. Indoors or out, food and drink will be available from Lickety Split and the MASS MoCA bar both before and during the performance. Galleries will be open until 7:30 P.M. with a special price for ticket-holders.
Tickets for Loudon Wainwright are $20 in advance or $24 the day of the concert. 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 (July 1 through September 6 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