John McCutcheon’s clear tenor voice, mastery of instruments — guitar, hammered dulcimer, fiddle, autoharp, banjo and piano — and supreme ability to connect with audiences have made him one of the most beloved folk musicians working today. McCutcheon will return to The Palms Playhouse for a concert at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan.20. Tickets are $25.
Over the last 35 years, John McCutcheon’s songs have reflected and then been incorporated into the nation’s heritage. Not one to be consigned to a narrow category, the subjects of McCutcheon’s original songs range from the poignant sweep of history (“Christmas in the Trenches”), to daily life (“Room At The Top of The Stairs,” “Kindergarten Wall”), to current events both outrageous (“Ashcroft’s Army”) and hopeful songs of ordinary people transcending their situation (“Sara Tucholsky,” “Streets of Sarajevo”). No matter the topic, McCutcheon’ songs capture the eternal and enduring aspects of life and reflect them back with clarity, warmth, and verve.
Combining aspects of Pete Seeger and Will Rogers, Mr. Rogers and Bruce Springsteen, and a righteously passionate and impishly playful “everyman” sensibility, McCutcheon brings his gifts as a songwriter, musician and storyteller to each recording and performance. His 30-plus albums (receiving seven Grammy nominations along the way), his multiple award-winning children’s books and years of performing have earned McCutcheon a loyal following that crosses generations. The Palms is the only venue at which McCutcheon has performed every year since he started touring on the West Coast more than 30 years ago.
“It’s turned into a family reunion of sorts,” says McCutcheon, “with so many familiar faces out there.”
McCutcheon will weave his musical and story-telling spell at The Palms Playhouse, 13 Main St. Tickets are available at Armadillo Music in Davis, Watermelon Music’s Woodland branch, Pacific Ace Hardware in Winters and at the door if not sold out. For more information, call 530-795-1825 or visit palmsplayhouse.com.