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Country 13/07/2015

Lincoln Center And The Americana Music Association Deliver Powerful Encore With 'AmericanaFest NYC'

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Lincoln Center And The Americana Music Association Deliver Powerful Encore With 'AmericanaFest NYC'
New York, NY (Top40 Charts) Free Performances by Artists Including: Iris DeMent, The Fairfield Four, The McCrary Sisters, Lyle Lovett, Kasey Chambers, Plus A Tribute to Bob Dylan's Highway 61 Revisited With Shawn Colvin, Rodney Crowell, Pokey LaFarge, Aimee Mann and Ted Leo, plus The "Watkins Family Hour" featuring Sean Watkins & Sara Watkins of Nickel Creek, Fiona Apple, Don Heffington, Sebastian Steinberg, and special guestJustin Townes Earle

The Americana Music Association and Lincoln Center have unveiled their 2015 lineup for "AmericanaFest NYC," running August 7 - 9, as part of Lincoln Center's Out Of Doors Series. Last year's "inaugural free-fest-of-down-home goodness" (New York Magazine) featured some of Americana's "biggest stars," and offered "a notion of Americana that's essential rather than prescriptive" (New York Times).

This year's bill includes gospel legends The Fairfield Four and The McCrary Sisters, Australian rocker Kasey Chambers, veteran singer-songwriter Iris DeMent and Grammy-winning country artist Lyle Lovett.

It also boasts an eclectic tribute to Bob Dylan's seminal album 'Highway 61 Revisited,' featuring Aimee Mann, Ted Leo, Shawn Colvin, Rodney Crowell, Pokey LaFarge and Justin Townes Earle, with Watkins Family Hour (Nickel Creek's Sean Watkins & Sara Watkins, Fiona Apple) acting as the house band.

All events are free with no tickets required. Events take place on Lincoln Center's Plazas between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenues, from West 62nd Street to West 65th Street (except where noted).

A full calendar of events -- all presented by the Americana Music Association -- is provided below. For current listings, please visit or

In a sweeping embrace of America's diverse sounds -- from country to soul, from roots rock to gospel -- Americanatest NYCbuilds on Lincoln Center's beloved Roots of Americana Music series in a weekend-long collaboration with the Americana Music Association, advocates for the authentic voice of American roots music around the world.

The McCrary Sisters -- Ann, Deborah, Regina, and Alfreda -- daughters of Reverend Sam McCrary of Fairfield Four fame, grew up on gospel and over the years have sung in every studio and style that Nashville has to offer, with various sisters collaborating with the likes of Johnny Cash, Wynonna Judd, Buddy Miller, and Patty Griffin, appearing on Bobby Jones TV show, and touring with gospel-rock powerhouse Mike Farris. Regina toured and recorded for several years with Bob Dylan and performed with Elvis and Stevie Wonder. Uniting to form their quartet a few years ago, they perform a delicious blend of gospel, blues, funk, soul, and R&B. They've released a third album and have guested on recordings by Paul Thorn, Mary Gauthier, and Dr. John. Says Regina McCrary, "I see us as a bridge between old school and new school (gospel). You've got to understand where the music has been to know where to take it."

*Junior Mambazo will open the show at 7pm
The Quebe Sisters perform a refreshing blend of vintage country, bluegrass, jazz, and swing standards with Texas style fiddling. Grace, Sophia, and Hulda Quebe began fiddling at very early age and later added three-part harmony. The sisters count such artists as Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys, Benny Goodman, Ella Fitzgerald, The Mills Brothers, Patsy Cline, and the Andrew and McGuire Sisters as influences. The Quebes have appeared with Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder, Merle Haggard, Asleep at the Wheel, Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers, and Marty Stuart. In conjunction with the release of their third, and latest album, 'Every Which-A-Way,' the trio has appeared at Grand Ole Opry, the Kennedy Center, and the Marty Stuart Show. "It's an honor to live on the same planet as The Quebe Sisters. They represent everything that I love about pure American music," said Marty Stuart.

Rising Americana singer-songwriter, Sam Outlaw is a South Dakota native who creates fresh, original songs that capture the spirit of the classic country singers that inspire him: George Jones, Willie Nelson, Gene Watson, Don Williams, Keith Whitely, and Dwight Yoakum. His self-released EP and live shows in Southern California, where he now lives, generated lots of attention, leading to his Nashville debut at the renowned music showcase, Music City Roots. Outlaw's debut full-length album, 'Angeleno,' produced by roots music legend Ry Cooder and featuring, among others, musicians from My Morning Jacket, Dawes, and Punch Brothers, is due out this June. Rolling Stone called the album, "A culture-clashing country record that looks far beyond the Bible Belt for inspiration, swirling influences from across the map including mid-century pop-rock, Johnny Cash's Ring of Fire, George Jones and Poco into 12 original tracks about love, liquor and life on the West Coast."

Kasey Chambers, the singer, songwriter and storyteller from Australia released her tenth studio album and first solo record in four years, 'Bittersweet,' on July 24 in the US. Produced by Nick DiDia (Pearl Jam, Bruce Springsteen, The Wallflowers) at Studios 301 in Byron Bay, Australia, Bittersweet is something of a departure for Kasey. 'Bittersweet' is again a testament to the songwriting talents of an artist who has won 10 APRA Awards (she holds the record for the highest awarded solo APRA Songwriter in Australia across 10 studio albums), 10 ARIA Awards, 20 Golden Guitar Awards and nominations for two Americana Music Awards. Previously released in Australia, 'Bittersweet' has already garnered critical acclaim with The Sunday Herald Sun in Sydney proclaiming, "For her first solo album since 2010's 'Little Bird,' Chambers has nailed it. 4 Stars." 'Bittersweet' also took home the Country Album of the Year award at 2014 ARIAs and won the Country Music Golden Guitar Awards for Album of the Year and Single of the Year for "Bittersweet" with Bernard Fanning. Chambers is currently touring the U.S. in support of 'Bittersweet's' release.

Dylan's 'Highway 61 Revisited' performed in its entirety Watkins Family Hour house band and special guests Shawn Colvin, Rodney Crowell, Pokey LaFarge, and Aimee Mann and Ted Leo "Watkins Family Hour" featuring Sean Watkins & Sara Watkins of Nickel Creek, Fiona Apple, Don Heffington, Sebastian Steinberg, and special guest Justin Townes Earle

When folk singer Bob Dylan went electric with the release of his 1965 album 'Highway 61 Revisited,' the shock reverberated in every corner of popular music. Rolling Stone, in its 2012 survey of the 500 greatest albums of all time, ranked it number four and described its groundbreaking impact by quoting Bruce Springsteen, who called the beginning of "Like a Rolling Stone," the opening song on 'Highway 61 Revisited,' the "snare shot that sounded like somebody'd kicked open the door to your mind." Ranging from soothing ballads to hard-driving, bluesy rock, the album was a statement that a new kind of rock 'n roll -- sophisticated, complex, and rebellious -- had arrived. To mark the 50th anniversary of the album's release an outstanding line-up of musicians will join the Watkins Family Hour house band to perform every song from the groundbreaking album. Joining that line-up are singer-songwriter Shawn Colvin; Nashville Songwriters Hall of Famer Rodney Crowell; genre-bending, younger generation musician Pokey LaFarge, who adds early jazz, ragtime, and Western swing to his celebratory Americana sound; and post-punk super duo Aimee Mann and Ted Leo (aka The Both).

Brother and sister, guitarist Sean, and fiddler Sara Watkins are two parts of the celebrated progressive bluegrass band Nickel Creek that they formed in 1989 with mandolinist Chris Thile -- while all were still not yet in their teens. The siblings, at first casual performers at the L.A. club Largo, created "The Watkins Family Hour" as a free-form evening to introduce new music and play with fellow musician friends. The concert has been a staple on the L.A. folk scene since 2002, with the Los Angeles Times calling it "a variety show of epic proportions." The Watkins are taking the concept on the road and will release the first WFH LP this summer. Regulars on the show -- including in-demand bassist Sebastian Steinberg, drummer Don Heffington, alt-rock singer-songwriter extraordinaire Fiona Apple, and others -- will participate and then re-group for the historic performance of Dylan's iconic album.

Son of powerhouse country and rock musician, songwriter, Steve Earle, Justin Townes Earle is an Americana innovator who has spun his own complicated personal history, including a troubled relationship with his father, into musical gold with his back-to-back sixth and seventh album releases, 'Single Mothers' and 'Absent Fathers' (Vagrant Records, 2014, 2015, respectively). VICE Magazine's hailed the Nashville born and raised singer-songwriter's Single Mothers as the album that's "showing the world that alt-country can be pretty dope" and The New York Times wrote, "The music isn't pumped up with arena-rock flourishes or computer tricks, and it doesn't hide bruises and aches. It draws proudly on Southern soul."

Presented in association with the Americana Music Association
"Iris DeMent makes music that celebrates humanity's efforts toward salvation, while acknowledging that most of our time on Earth is spent reconciling with the fact that we don't feel so redeemed. Grounded in hymns, early country songs, gospel and folk, DeMent's work is treasured by those who know it for its insight and unabashed beauty." That's how NPR's The Record recently described the Arkansas-born, Southern-California raised singer-songwriter, who will release her newest album 'The Trackless Woods' just prior of her Out of Doors engagement. The recording was inspired by and based on work of the Russian poet Anna Akhmatova, who was born in 1889 and lived through her homeland's tumultuous 20th century before her death in 1966. DeMent has said her attraction to Akhmatova's life and her moving poems stemmed from the poet's ability "to hold fast to love and truth" despite incredible hardship, and described her album as the "opportunity to put a beautiful, much needed example of victory over inhumanity out in the world."

A singer, composer, and actor, Lyle Lovett has broadened the definition of American music in a career that spans more than 30 years and 14 albums. The Texas-based musician fuses elements of Americana, swing, jazz, folk, gospel, and blues in unconventional ways, remaining one of popular music's most fascinating artists. Among his many accolades are four Grammy Awards, the Americana Music Association's inaugural Trailblazer Award, and receiving the designation of Texas State Musician. Acoustic Guitar recently put Lovett on its list of the "20 Essential Texas singer-guitarists who helped write America's story," calling him a "true original." When Lovett rolls into New York this August with his Large Band, the Damrosch Park audience will be treated to their twangy, jazzy, rockin' version of that story. Presented in association with the Americana Music Association.

All events are FREE. No tickets required
Events take place on LINCOLN CENTER'S PLAZAS between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenues, from West 62nd Street to West 65th Street (except where noted). Take No.1 IRT to 66th Street-Lincoln Center Station) OR the A, B, C, D, and No. 1 trains to 59th Street-Columbus Circle. Visit for complete schedule.

West 62nd Street, between Columbus and Amsterdam Avenue.
North of the Metropolitan Opera House, in front of the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts and Lincoln Center Theater, near West 65th Street.

Main plaza of Lincoln Center, fronting Columbus Avenue, between 63rd & 64th Streets.
Broadway between 62nd and 63rd Streets.
The Americana Music Association is a professional non-profit trade organization whose mission is to advocate for the authentic voice of American Roots Music around the world. The Association produces events throughout the year including the annual Americana Music Festival and Conference, presented by Nissan, and the critically acclaimed Americana Honors & Awards program. For more information about the association, please visit: To apply for press credentials to cover AmericanaFest NYC at Lincoln Center (Aug. 7-9) or The Americana Music Association's 16th Annual Festival and Conference in Nashville (Sept. 15-20), please visit

Inaugurated in 1971, Lincoln Center Out of Doors began as a small festival of street theater in collaboration with Everyman Theater (co-founded by actress Geraldine Fitzgerald.) Over its 45-year history, Out of Doors has commissioned more than 100 works from composers and choreographers and presented hundreds of major dance companies, renowned world-music artists, and legendary jazz, folk, gospel, blues, and rock musicians. It has highlighted the rich cultural diversity of New York City with its annual "La Casita" project which offers poetry and spoken word, along with music and dance performances. Out of Doors has partnered with dozens of community and cultural organizations including the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute, Lincoln Square Neighborhood Center, Center for Traditional Music and Dance, and the Chinese American Arts Council. The festival is produced by Jill Sternheimer.

Lincoln Center Out of Doors is a presentation of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts (LCPA) which serves three primary roles: presenter of artistic programming, national leader in arts and education and community relations, and manager of the Lincoln Center campus. A presenter of more than 3,000 free and ticketed events, performances, tours, and educational activities annually, LCPA offers 15 series, festivals, and programs including American Songbook, Avery Fisher Artist Program, Great Performers, Lincoln Center Books, Lincoln Center Dialogue, Lincoln Center Festival, Lincoln Center Out of Doors, Lincoln Center Vera List Art Project, Midsummer Night Swing, Martin E. Segal Awards, Meet the Artist, Mostly Mozart Festival, Target Free Thursdays, and the White Light Festival, as well as the Emmy Award-winning Live From Lincoln Center, which airs nationally on PBS. As manager of the Lincoln Center campus, LCPA provides support and services for the Lincoln Center complex and the 11 resident organizations. In addition, LCPA led a $1.2 billion campus renovation, completed in October 2012.

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