of the most important recordings ever come out of Nashville" (Rolling
Stone, 1972) "...Circle..." is recognized today as a country
music milestone and integral part of Americana history and was called
by the 2004 Zagat survey "the most important album in Country Music"
The music John performs
today evolved from early inspiration from seeing The Dillards in his
native Southern California, and music he made going down that early
road with various artists, including Jose Feliciano and Michael Martin
Murphey (prior to the formation of NGDB). Then, in 1966, "a bunch of
guys playing together at McCabe's Guitar Shop (where John was teaching
banjo at the time) in Long Beach, California, joined forces to form
The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. McEuen perform with them, playing everything
from "folk to rock to country ..." All this has led him to continuing
recent successes in new frontiers. John is still touring with the Dirt
Band today - the group is coming up on 40 years since that beginning!
McEuen produced the "Nitty Gritty Surround" DVD for
AIX Records, which was recorded in 96/24/5.1 format and filmed
with 5 cameras. This award winning release again finds John
breaking new ground as a producer and an artist.
wonderful package includes backstage footage, musicians background
information, and interviews with the great line up of artists
and cast of stellar pickers backing up Jennifer Warnes, Laurie
Lewis/Tom Rozum, John's son, Jonathan McEuen, Rick Cunha, Tom
Corbett, Randy Tico and Jim Christie.
John's Video Gallery
for video clips of
music and live interviews from the DVD.
for info about production of the DVD)
in to John McEuen's
XM Satellite Radio
The Village, ch. 15
(all times eastern)
first Tuesday of the
month at noon,
then the following
Friday at midnight,
Sat. at 6 p.m.and
Monday at 6 a.m.
John McEuen is known
to a wide spectrum of music fans from working with a diverse group of
people throughout his career. Name somebody in show business and he's
probably got a story to tell about them! He has performed or recorded
with Dolly Parton, Andy Williams, The Doors, Kenny Rogers, Willie Nelson,
Bill Wyman, Johnny Cash, Little River Band, Marshall Tucker Band, Air
Supply, Doobie Brothers, Bill Cosby, Steve Martin, Robert Schimmel, Stephen
Wright, The Smothers Brothers, Rowan & Martin, Little Richard . . . Mary
Chapin Carpenter, Steve Martin, Robin Williams, Clint Eastwood, Robert
Schimmel, Dizzy Gillespie, The Band, Crystal Gayle, Tammy Wynette, Bill
Monroe, Earl Scruggs, Lester Flatt, Leon Russell, Vassar Clements, Sissy
Spacek, Tommy Lee Jones, Albert Gore, Hootie and the Blowfish, Phish,
Mary McCaslin... the list goes on.
for a path to showbiz in 1965, McEuen booked Bob Dylan for a show that
sold out at a high school in Southern California. Later, by 1970, he
convinced his brother to also manage high school buddy Steve Martin,
who John had worked with in Disneyland's Magic Shop (Steve learned his
musicianship on the banjo from John). In the 80's John brought Mark
O'Connor to Warner Brothers Records, he took Marty Stuart out on the
road with him as a sideman, he introduced the Dirt Band audience to
many now nationally known musicians by incorporating them in band shows
In his career so
far John McEuen has:
- Flown 2 million
miles and driven a million miles.
- Done over 10,000
interviews and over 300 television performances.
- Produced numerous
- As an interviewer,
interviewed diverse personalities from Malcolm Forbes to Emmylou Harris.
- Played over 5,000
shows around the world.
John's last Vanguard
release, "The Best of... " String Wizard's Picks showcases just how
he manages to enchant his audience with a gypsy melody one minute and
then charm them with his magician's touch on a bit of county/Salsa or
music that rides the wind on the western plains. It is also one of the
first and only enhanced acoustic music CDS, featuring 15 minutes of
video footage complementing the 52 minutes of music on the cd in CD
ROM format (for PC or MAC).
Featuring 13 songs chosen from his previous Vanguard albums and a hot
new live cut recorded with his full band of String Wizards: 21 year
old hot guitarist/vocalist son, Jonathan; Randy Tico (acoustic bass);
Phil Salazar (fiddle); and Tom Corbett (mandolin, guitar), Jesse Siebenberg
(percussion), this cd captures the essence of John's studio work and
On his producer
side John is especially proud of his 90 minute video documentary on
The Dillards - A Night in the Ozarks, which captures the Dillards at
their hottest in a reunion of the original group in 1991. Shot on film
with live music, (Mike Denecke engineered) in a Salem Missouri farmhouse,
this is "the best bluegrass movie ever made!"
Conceived by John
in 1990, The Deadwood Jam, held annually in the Black Hills of South
Dakota, is a hot two day festival type show in the historic town made
famous by Wild Bill Hickock - Deadwood, So. Dakota. This 'Telluride'
style event has featured some of America's best known music acts. Hosted
by McEuen and starting at high-noon in front of the saloon where Wild
Bill played his last hand, The Jam has earned the reputation of the
best music festival in its three state area (Wyoming, Nebraska, and
McEuen's award winning
production of Chief Jim Billie - Alligator Tales made considerable impact
on the Native American music market. Jim Billie"s true stories
and songs are based on his life and impressions of living in his Everglades
homeland on the Big Cypress reservation in southern Florida. The subsequent
enchanting Seminole Fire features John's scoring and production, backing
the chief, telling the never recorded before legends of the Seminole.
John's first live
CD Round Trip - with the L.A. string "Round Trip" pays homage to his
early influences: Doc Watson, Don Reno, Merle Travis, Earl Scruggs,
Douglas Dillard, and Bill Monroe. John has combined these influences
and developed his own unique styles over the years.
John has traveled
the world America's as instrumental poet, influenced by all those who
came through the L.A. area venues in '60's as well as those met in his
extensive travels. He came back to Pasadena and Santa Monica in 1999
with his hot band and collections of memories and music reflecting those
travels. Round Trip showcases the stellar talents of some of California's
best acoustic musicians, and features the hot musicianship and vocals
of his son Jonathan. Phil Salazar (fiddle), Randy Tico (bass), Jonathan
McEuen (guitar & astonishing vocals), Bryan Savage (sax), Jesse Siebenberg
(drums) and Tom Corbett (mandolin) make up the String Wizards, and on
Round Trip they "bring it all home".
Check out some
of John's "road stories" on the website
for a preview of the upcoming book by John.
Look for the following productions:
"Nitty Gritty Surround" - John McEuen and Jimmy Ibbotson with
Jennifer Warnes, Laurie Lewis, and the String Wizards featuring Jonathan
McEuen, in award winning 96/24/5.1 surround - DVD
Manassas: End of
Innocence (a civil war documentary) playing at Manassas Battlefield
Paul Williams -
DVD production released fall of 2007 (produced by John) on this great
The Nitty Gritty
Dirt Band Songbook and Photo album...