Lush Country

Lush Country

Thu · August 3, 2017

7:30 pm

$0.00 - $10.00

Off Sale

This show is no cover but you can guarantee your seat for $10.

Classic country songs from the 1950s and 1960s
Are you lonesome tonight? Got heartaches by the number? A hankering for the sound of a pedal steel guitar, that high lonesome Floyd Cramer piano and that Patsy Cline yodel? Then you gotta hear Lush Country, a new all-star band  playing the best country songs of the hi-fi era, from Eddy Arnold to Tammy Wynette and back again.

The seven members of Lush Country are an all-star group of longtime Twin Cities headliners and  A Prairie Home Companion veterans: Dan Chouinard, Prudence Johnson, Richard Kriehn, Gary Raynor, Gary Rue, Pete Johnson and Joe Savage.

Prudence Johnson
Prudence Johnson
Prudence Johnson’s long and happy career as a singer, writer, and teacher has landed her on the musical theatre stage, in two feature films, (A River Runs Through It, A Prairie Home Companion) on national radio, (several long stints on A Prairie Home Companion) and on concert stages across North America and occasionally Europe (Carnegie Hall, the Hollywood Bowl, Gorky Park and an old mosque in Israel being the most memorable.) She has released more than a dozen recordings, including albums dedicated to the music of the Gershwins, Hoagy Carmichael, Greg Brown, and a collection of international lullabies. Prudence finds pleasure in working with young people, serving as a music director at SteppingStone Theatre for Youth Development since ’96 and teaching private lessons. Since taking up the tenor ukulele, she has found great riches in the folk music of her roots, and in the work of some of the more profound songwriters of her generation. One such project, in collaboration with the New Standards, is devoted to the music of Joni Mitchell, Tom Waits & Leonard Cohen.
In recent years, her greatest focus has been on creating multi-media works for concert and theater stages that blend performance with her interests in history and literature. A play about a little-known collaborator of Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht in Berlin between the wars, first produced in 2003, is being rewritten under a new title, and she and pianist Dan Chouinard have just completed a state-wide tour of their new music/history show Millers, Miners & Moonshiners: Minnesota in the 1920s. Their previous collaborations include The Golden Age of Radio, Tiptoe Through the 60s: Songs and Stories from a Revolutionary Decade, and Another Song About Paris. In 2011, she created and produced the touring show and CD A Girl Named Vincent, featuring the poetry of Edna St Vincent Millay set to music by four MN composers.
Richard Kriehn
Richard Kriehn
When Richard Kriehn turned 10, his mom bought him a mandolin; at 19, hed won the Buck White International Mandolin Contest. He went on to play with the Nashville Mandolin Ensemble and bluegrass group 1946. On the classical side, he has performed with numerous orchestras and was principal second violin for the Washington/Idaho Symphony.
Dan Chouinard
Dan Chouinard
For three decades Dan Chouinard has been pianist and accordionist of choice for a who’s who of Twin Cities performers, an enabler of community singalongs and a writer of hit shows for public radio, concert hall and theatrical stage.

The list of regular Twin Cities colleagues includes Maria Jette, Prudence Johnson, Peter Ostroushko, Kevin Kling, Ann Reed, the Rose Ensemble and Philip Brunelle and Vocalessence. He’s appeared all across the upper Midwest and turned up often on Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion.

As a writer and host he’s often asked to create special live programs for Minnesota Public Radio, the MN Historical Society, the Rose Ensemble and others. His show Civil War Homecoming played at the Fitzgerald Theater in April 2015, was broadcast statewide on MPR and continues to be shown on Twin Cities Public Television. His stage musical Steerage Song toured throughout Minnesota in 2013, a show co-authored with Peter Rothstein about the Ellis Island era of immigration to the US, as portrayed in folk songs, newspaper clippings and Tin Pan Alley tunes. In 2014 his show Cafe Europa, about bicycling with an accordion from Naples to Normandy in search of Minnesota WWII stories, was broadcast and televised statewide.

In 1994 he created an acclaimed radio series The Singer’s Voice, broadcast live Sunday nights from the Dakota Jazz Club, then in St. Paul, hosting song-spiked conversation from the piano with a different singer each week, over 200 in the six years of the show’s tenure.

His essays have been published in Minnesota Monthly, Saint John’s Magazine, the Minnesota Orchestra’s Showcase magazine and in the Minneapolis StarTribune.

He’s traveled extensively in France and Italy, with bicycle and without, and has presented French and Italian sing-alongs at the Alliance Française in Minneapolis. He spent the last months of summer 2015 working in Italy on an independent Hollywood film, Smitten!, to be released early next year.

He’s a musical consultant and concert organizer at the progressive St. Joan of Arc Catholic Community in South Minneapolis, and leads monthly community sing-alongs in downtown Minneapolis and St. Anthony Park.

He grew up in a big musical family near Lindstrom MN, attended St. John’s University in Collegeville MN and spent four years as a teacher of French and Italian as a graduate student at the University of Minnesota.
Gary Rue
Gary Rue
Gary Rue has served as composer and songwriter for many artists (There are 2 compilations of Rue material, with performances by The Honeydogs, Helen Reddy, Nick Lowe, Butch Thompson, Laura MacKenzie, Maria Jette, The Rose Ensemble, Leslie Ball, Dan Chouinard, Bradley Greenwald, Christina Baldwin, Rio Nido (featuring Prudence Johnson), Jennifer Baldwin Peden, Debbie Duncan, Pat Donohue, Arne Fogel and many others).

Creator and co-creator of more than 85 music theater scores with over 2000 regional, national and international performances.

Composer and vocalist for commercials like, Mall of America’s “There’s a Place For Fun In Your Life”, Paul Wellstone’s 1996 campaign theme “We Can Do Better”, Isaac Misrahi’s Target campaign “Cross Country” and Hormel Co. “Pam, Don’t Take My SPAM”.

Band leader for The Coasters, The Platters, The Marvelettes, The Shirelles. Music Director for Gene Pitney (Town Without Pity) from 1986-2006.

2010 Inductee Mid-America Music Hall of Fame and 2010 Inductee Minnesota Music Hall of Fame.
Peter Johnson
Peter Johnson
Peter has spent his entire career as a full time professional drummer/musician/songwriter. In the mid 70’s, he was a drummer and toured the U.S., Europe, Australia and New Zealand for three years with Manhattan Transfer. He played on “Manhattan Transfer Live”, an album recorded at the Hammersmith Odeon in London. He also played on the “Pastiche” Manhattan Transfer studio album.

He has written hundreds of jingles, songs and underscores for commercials, including composing and producing all the music for two “Sesame Street Live” shows, which toured the world.

Peter was the house band drummer for two American Public Radio weekly shows that were heard nationally: “Good Evening” and “First House on the Right,” where played with Shawn Colvin, Lyle Lovett, and Harry Connick Jr., among many others.

Peter still exhibits his drumming versatility; in appearances with the Minnesota Orchestra, he’s played Klezmer music with Doc Severinson, and jazz with Dave Brubeck. He plays often with “Synergy,” one of the elite variety bands in the Twin Cities. He is the principal percussionist with the Minnesota Sinfonia, a 26-piece chamber orchestra. He makes frequent appearances on Garrison Keillor’s “A Prairie Home Companion.” Peter has played with Michael Bolton, Sister Sledge, Freda Payne, Trisha Yearwood, Chuck Berry, David Gaines, and Donny Osmond, among many others. He also does recording sessions with local artists.
Joe Savage
Joe Savage
Gary Raynor
Gary Raynor
Gary Raynor is a bassist best known for his appearances in the Guy's All-Star Shoe Band in the radio show "A Prairie Home Companion." He has also played with Sammy Davis, Jr.'s backing band, and a host of other jazz artists, including Count Basie. Although he plays a jazz pizzicato double bass, he specialises in arco solos. His arco work is featured on records such as the Janet Jackson hit single "Again." He teaches double bass at McNally Smith College in St. Paul, Minnesota. He also has an impressive technique on bass guitar.
Venue Information:
Crooners Lounge & Supper Club
6161 Hwy 65 NE
Minneapolis, MN, 55432
http://www.croonersloungemn.com/