Shows
This week: we look back to the winter of 2015 with a compilation of two broadcasts guest-hosted by Chris Thile at the Fitzgerald Theater in Saint Paul, Minnesota that February. Jerry Douglas and The Earls of Leicester play "'Til the End of the World Rolls 'Round" and "Shuckin' the Corn," Rhiannon Giddens sings "Black is the Color" and "Last Kind Words," Billy Collins reads "The Suggestion Box" and "1960," Sarah Jarosz stops by for "Fuel the Fire," and Chris and his fellow Punch Brothers turn in "Boll Weevil" and "Julep." Plus: the continuing adventures of Mando Man and a message from Guy's Shoes, with the Royal Academy of Actors, Tim Russell, Sue Scott, and Fred Newman; more music from our music director and pianist Richard Dworsky; and a tale of credit card fraud, pizza, and revenge from Minneapolis storyteller Tristan Jimerson.
  • Jerry Douglas presents The Earls of Leicester

    Mention a Dobro and Jerry Douglas immediately comes to mind. The 14-time Grammy winner and three-time Country Music Association Musician of the Year is internationally recognized as the world's best on the instrument. Now Jerry Douglas presents the Earls of Leicester. Named, in a witty twist, for Earl Scruggs and Lester Flatt, this all-star band pays 21st-century tribute to a group of mid-20th-century bluegrass pioneers. Their debut CD, The Earls of Leicester (Rounder) was released last fall and just took the Grammy for Best Bluegrass Album. Jerry Douglas (Dobro), Shawn Camp (guitar), Johnny Warren (fiddle), Charlie Cushman (banjo), Barry Bales (bass), Jeff White (mandolin).
  • Rhiannon Giddens

    Singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist Rhiannon Giddens, who grew up in the Piedmont region of North Carolina, is an Oberlin Conservatory of Music grad who fell in love with old-time music. She went on to form the groundbreaking, Grammy-winning Carolina Chocolate Drops, whose music highlights the central role African-Americans played in Southern string-band tradition. Her debut solo album, Tomorrow Is My Turn, was just released on the Nonesuch label. Joining Rhiannon for this performance: Hubby Jenkins, Malcolm Parson, Rowan Corbett, Jason Sypher, and Jamie Dick.
  • Sarah Jarosz

    Sarah Jarosz is a gifted multi-instrumentalist (mandolin, octave mandolin, guitar, banjo), an expressive and distinctive vocalist, and an accomplished songwriter. The New England Conservatory of Music grad has carved out a solid niche where contemporary folk, Americana, and roots music intersect. She’s been nominated for multiple Grammys, including two for her album Build Me Up From Bones. Her 2016 recording is titled Undercurrent (Sugar Hill).
  • Punch Brothers

    It's hard to put a label on Punch Brothers. These five virtuosic musicians have been pushing boundaries as performers, recording artists, composers, interpreters, technicians, and stylists, since they first came together in 2006. That's when they made the album How to Grow a Woman from the Ground, which earned them a Grammy nomination. Suffice it to say, Chris Eldridge (guitar), Paul Kowert (bass), Noam Pikelny (banjo), Chris Thile (mandolin), and Gabe Witcher (fiddle) are stirring things up with their extraordinary sound. Their new album is The Phosphorescent Blues (Nonesuch).
  • Tristan Jimerson

    After moving to Minneapolis to attend art school, native Iowan Tristan Jimerson became a freelance copywriter whose award-winning work has been featured in publications such as Creativity magazine and The Egoist. He has written for radio and TV, as well as penning screenplays, short stories, poetry, and memorable ads for Best Buy's Geek Squad, St. Jude Medical, 3M, Fender guitars, and more. He is also a heckuva storyteller -- just ask the folks at public radio's The Moth Radio Hour, who included one of Tristan's tales in their 2013 book, The Moth: 50 True Stories.
  • Chris Thile

    Chris Thile, A Prairie Home Companion's new host, made his first appearance on the show in 1996. He was 15 and had already been playing mandolin for a decade. He'd also started Nickel Creek with Sara and Sean Watkins, and released his first solo recording, 1994's Leading Off. This Grammy winner now collaborates with many musicians in myriad styles and leads acoustic quintet Punch Brothers. Thile's solo albums include Bach: Sonatas and Partitas, Vol. 1 (Nonesuch).
  • Richard Dworsky

    Keyboardist, composer, arranger, and longtime Prairie Home Companion music director Richard Dworsky has collaborated with such diverse musicians as Yo-Yo Ma, James Taylor, Brad Paisley, Kristin Chenoweth, and Sheryl Crow. He has provided music for documentaries on HBO and PBS, and has released many recordings of original material, including his latest, All In Due Time.
  • Tim Russell

    Mild-mannered Tim Russell one minute -- Obama, Trump, or myriad others the next. It's almost impossible to stump this man of many voices. Says fellow Prairie Home Companion actor Sue Scott, "He does a better Ira Glass than Ira Glass." A well-known Twin Cities radio personality and voice actor, Tim appeared in the Robert Altman film A Prairie Home Companion and the Coen brothers' A Serious Man.
  • Sue Scott

    Since 1992, Prairie Home fans have heard Sue Scott play everything from well-intentioned moms and ditzy teenagers to Guy Noir stunners and leathery crones who've smoked one pack of Camel straights too many. She recently climbed back on stage in a variety of theater roles. She is well known for her commercial and voice-over work on radio and television, as well as movie roles, including the part of "Donna" in Robert Altman's A Prairie Home Companion.
  • Fred Newman

    Sound effects man Fred Newman is an actor, writer, musician, and sound designer for film and TV. Turns out, no one is more surprised than Fred that he's made a career out of doing what he used to do behind the teacher's back -- crossing his eyes, making sounds, and doing voices. He readily admits that, growing up, he was unceremoniously removed from several classrooms, "once by my bottom lip."