John Prine
John Prine

John Prine Finally Gets His Orchestra

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DENVER (CelebrityAccess) When John Prine plays Colorado’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre July 28, he won’t be doing it alone. The folk troubadour will have the backing of the Colorado Symphony, the first time Prine has ever performed with an orchestra.

Prine, although he can and does tour with a band, has always been basically a “guy with guitar,” whose songs fit nicely beside a front porch and a lazy hound dog. An orchestra backing doesn’t automatically come to mind.

The Colorado Symphony, on the other hand, does 6-9 shows a season with pop artists (like Seal this past summer), so, to them, this is likely just one more upcoming show that needs arrangement (a call and an email to the symphony’s spokesman were not returned).

Those in the know, however, are well aware that something special is happening.

“Anytime I ask John about Red Rocks, he is super stoked,” Mitchell Drosin, Prine’s booking agent at S.A.D. Booking, told CelebrityAccess. “This made it even more special playing with the symphony.”

Prine will be touring his new album, Tree of Forgiveness, which has songs that lend themselves to orchestral arrangements, such as “Caravan of Fools,” with its minor chords and ominous undertones.

Or “Boundless Love,” with a recording that already includes some organ that could be more fully realized.

Plus there are the chestnuts like Sam Stone,” or possibly deeper cuts like “Speed of the Sound of Loneliness” or “Sleepy Eyed-Boy.”

“John could play ‘Ring Around The Rosie” and I’d be excited,” Chuck Morris, CEO of AEG Live Rocky Mountains, told CelebrityAccess. Morris has been booking Prine since 1971 and said he was, obviously, looking forward to next year’s show.


It happened by accident, with AEG Live Rocky Mountains President Don Strasburg recognizing the open date and communicating it to Drosin and Prine’s wife/manager, Fiona Prine.

“He wanted to come back for his annual/bi-annual visit to Red Rocks,” Morris said. “The schedule was packed – we do 110 shows – but we had a date in May but he thought it was too cold.

“However, it turned out he could do one date that the symphony was already holding at Red Rocks in July. They said ‘We’d love to do it with John.’ We called back John and said, ‘If you want to do come back in July when it’s warmer, you’d play with the symphony.’ He thought it was a great idea.”

And that was that.

Tickets go on sale at www.axs.com Dec. 14 at 10 a.m. General admission and reserved seats are $55 to $150 with applicable service charges.

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