Posted in comedy | movies | music | tour dates on March 3, 2009

Christopher Guest, Michael McKean and Harry Shearer

Actors/Directors/Musicians and Comedy Icons Christopher Guest, Michael McKean and Harry Shearer are doing something they have never done before; performing a six week, 30 city multi-media acoustic tour without wigs and electric instruments.

UNWIGGED & UNPLUGGED: An Evening with Christopher Guest, Michael McKean and Harry Shearer has the legendary musical and comedic trio performing music from heavy metal's loudest band Spinal Tap along with the folk music from A Mighty Wind, and more.

Tickets for the UNWIGGED & UNPLUGGED tour go on sale Friday, March 6th (mostly at Ticketmaster), with the tour starting Friday, April 17th in Vancouver and ending Sunday, May 31st in Milwaukee.

UNWIGGED & UNPLUGGED is not about funny costumes and characters, but rather three long time friends and collaborators who make each laugh and love nothing better than to find some excuse to get together and play music. The trio commented, "With this being the 25th Anniversary of the film This is Spinal Tap, we thought this would be a fun and at the same time, a little challenging, as we have never performed as ourselves. Think of the evening as three old friends jamming in your living room. As opposed to OUR living rooms; we won't be home."

The NYC shows (plural) are May 26th and May 27th at the Beacon Theatre. More info, all dates and exact on-sale dates, below....

Spinal Tap

UNWIGGED & UNPLUGGED will feature songs from the original soundtrack This Is Spinal Tap (1984), the studio album Break Like The Wind (1992), and A Mighty Wind (2003) along with some special surprises and rarities thrown in.

Guest, McKean, and Shearer have a rich history going back decades. Guest and McKean first met in college where they wrote songs together. As for McKean and Shearer, they have known each other since 1970 when they were both members of satirical group The Credibility Gap on radio, stage and records.

In 1979, Guest, McKean and Shearer appeared together for the first time in a Rob Reiner-produced, sketch comedy television pilot called The TV Show. It was here the world got their famous glimpse of Spinal Tap featuring lead singer David St. Hubbins (McKean), guitarist Nigel Tufnel (Guest), and bassist Derek Smalls (Shearer).

In 1984, Reiner and the lads devised a way to bring the group back this time in a major motion picture, This Is Spinal Tap, and the rest is history, literally. This Is Spinal Tap was ranked #29 of the "100 Funniest Films of All Time" by The American Film Institute and The Library of Congress added the film to the National Film Registry's list of 25 American cinematic works selected for historical preservation calling the film a 'culturally significant' work. Entertainment Weekly recently awarded TISP eleventh place (of course) in their "cult film" list. And Netflix has ranked This Is Spinal Tap in the Top 1% of all Netflix Titles in terms of total rentals to-date!

And the music of Spinal Tap is as popular today as it ever was - their song Tonight I'm Gonna Rock You Tonight has been featured everywhere from the best selling video game Guitar Hero 2 to a Hallmark musical greeting card.

As for the ultimate compliment, the phrase "Up to eleven: up to maximum volume" was included in the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary as an ode to Nigel's amp that had controls that went beyond the usual maximum setting of 10..."Louder."
In 2003, Guest, McKean and Shearer came back reincarnated for the Christopher Guest directed film A Mighty Wind where they portrayed The Folksmen, a trio of folk musicians consisting of Mark Shubb (bass vocals and upright bass, played by Harry Shearer), Alan Barrows (tenor vocals, mandolin, guitar, and five-string banjo, played by Christopher Guest), and Jerry Palter (baritone vocals, guitar, and mandolin, played by Michael McKean). The title track A Mighty Wind (written by Christopher Guest, Eugene Levy and Michael McKean) was a 2004 Grammy Award Winner for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture while the song A Kiss at the End of the Rainbow (written by Michael McKean and Annette O'Toole) was nominated for an Oscar for Best Song. And over the years, Guest, McKean and Shearer have continued to appear and work together in various configurations in the Guest directed films: Waiting For Guffman (1996), Best In Show (2000) and For Your Consideration (2006).

Guest, McKean and Shearer summed up their working relationship and friendship this way, "The three of us make each other laugh and that's why we continue to do this. Why work with somebody who is going to bore you to death? If you have a choice about things like that, no one's going to choose the guy that puts you to sleep. "

UNWIGGED & UNPLUGGED - 2009 Tour Dates
4/17 Vancouver, BC Center for the Performing Arts , on sale: 3/6 10am PST
4/19 Portland, OR Keller Auditorium , on sale: 3/6 10am PST
4/20 Seattle, WA Paramount Theatre , on sale: 3/6 10am PST
4/22 Oakland, CA Paramount Theatre , on sale: 3/6 12pm PST
4/23 Santa Barbara, CA Santa Barbara Bowl , on sale: 3/7 1pm EST
4/26 Los Angeles, CA The Wiltern , on sale: 3/6 10am EST
4/27 Phoenix, AZ Dodge Theatre , on sale: 3/9 10am MST
4/29 Denver, CO Paramount Theatre , on sale: 3/7 10am MST
5/1 Houston, TX Jesse H, Jones Hall , on sale: 3/6 10am CST
5/2 Dallas, TX Nokia Theatre , on sale: 3/6 10am CST
5/4 Jacksonville, FL Florida Theatre , on sale: 3/6 10am EST=
5/5 Miami, FL The Fillmore , on sale: 3/6 10am EST
5/6 Orlando, FL Hard Rock Live , on sale: 3/6 10am EST=
5/8 St. Petersberg, FL Mahaffey Theatre , on sale: 3/6 10am EST=
5/9 Atlanta, GA Fox Theatre , on sale: 3/6 10am EST
5/10 Nashville, TN Ryman Auditorium , on sale: 3/6 10am CST
5/12 Baltimore, MD Lyric Opera House , on sale: 3/6 10am EST=
5/13 Washington, DC Warner Theatre , on sale: 3/7 10am EST
5/14 Phiadelphia, PA Keswick Theatre , on sale: 3/6 10am EST
5/17 Columbus, OH Palace Theatre , on sale: 3/6 10am EST
5/19 Cleveland, OH State Theatre , on sale: 3/6 11am EST
5/21 Toronto, ON Massey Hall , on sale: 3/12 10am EST
5/22 Mashantucket, CT MGM Grand Theatre @ Foxwoods , on sale: 3/6 9am EST
5/23 Boston, MA The Wilbur Theatre , on sale: 3/6 12pm EST
5/24 Atlantic City, NJ Music Box @ The Borgata , on sale: 3/6 10am EST
5/26 New York, NY Beacon Theatre , on sale: 3/12 10am EST
5/27 New York, NY Beacon Theatre , on sale: 3/6 10am EST
5/29 Detroit, MI Fox Theatre , on sale: 3/6 10am EST
5/30 Chicago, IL Chicago Theatre , on sale: 3/7 10am EST
5/31 Milwaukee, WI Riverside Theatre , on sale: 3/6 12pm CST



Comments (22)


Posted by Anonymous | March 3, 2009 3:53 PM

Do we have Bernie Madoff to thank for this?

Man, it's really hitting everybody....

Posted by Anonymous | March 3, 2009 3:53 PM

I always loved this story about Spinal Tap:

David Walliams: Ricky Gervais told me there's a story that Liam thinks Spinal Tap are a real band. Is that true?

Noel Gallagher: Yeah, he thought they were real people. We went to see them play in Carnegie Hall. Before they played, they came on as three folk singers from the film A Mighty Wind. We were laughing and he said: 'This is shit'. We said: 'No, those three are in Spinal Tap. You do know they are American actors?' 'They're not even a real band?' 'They're not even English! One of them is married to Jamie Lee Curtis.' 'I'm not fuckin' 'avin that,' he says, and walks off right up the middle of Carnegie Hall. He's never watched Spinal Tap since. He'd seen the film and loved it and thought they were a real band.,,1507223,00.html

Posted by Anonymous | March 3, 2009 4:19 PM

how could i leave this behind!

Posted by Anonymous | March 3, 2009 4:19 PM

they're not a real band?

Posted by Anonymous | March 3, 2009 4:38 PM

The band put out this video on YouTube to promote the tour. Certainly doesn't seem like Spinal Tap to me:

Posted by Matt | March 3, 2009 5:15 PM

Brings out the duty in my soul.

Posted by michaelways | March 3, 2009 5:26 PM

They are going to headline ATP NY.

Posted by Anonymous | March 3, 2009 5:30 PM

shearer is an asshole

Posted by Anonymous | March 3, 2009 6:46 PM

"shearer is an asshole"

Shearer's mustache ramjammed your sister behind the middle school. I guess I'd be bitter too.

Posted by Anonymous | March 3, 2009 9:20 PM

6:46 - loser much?

Posted by Anonymous | March 3, 2009 9:47 PM

What's with the extra hand on Michael McKean's shoulder? Bad photoshop?

Posted by cary | March 3, 2009 11:30 PM

I was just about to send my friends an email with the subject line, "Tap into America!" -- but then I read on, "...performing the music of Spinal Tap" -- what the F is this crap?

Spinal Tap is Nigel, David and Derek. I could give a rat's ass about some over-priced Tap cover band that also plays folk tunes.

Whatever. I'm a professional, I'll rise above it.

Posted by mark | March 4, 2009 11:20 AM

you sound stupid.

Posted by Anonymous | March 4, 2009 1:25 PM

"lick my luv pump"

Posted by Anonymous | March 4, 2009 1:51 PM

Listen to the flower people!

Posted by Anonymous | March 4, 2009 8:07 PM

presale thurs. password?

Posted by Anonymous | March 4, 2009 8:23 PM

Best comedy...and they are musicians!

Posted by Anonymous | March 6, 2009 10:07 AM

what the fuck is happening with the hands on McKeans shoulders?

Posted by Anonymous | March 10, 2009 11:23 PM

This is the best.....The others with ill comments should go f@#k themselves. Can't wait till Oakland

Posted by Eric Riley | April 7, 2009 11:26 PM

I always thought Shearer, Mckean and Guest were so FULL of hip, so progressive.....and just a tad, narcissistic, overrated, annoying and insufferable. Anybody that has ever met McKean stops being a fan real fast....what a jerk. Shearer is only slightly easier to take. I didn't think it was possible, but these guys are just too hip for their own good.

Posted by Not a Fan | June 2, 2009 7:19 PM

I love Laverne and Shirley and I love Squiggy!
Michael McKean is the greatest actor ever. "Hello Laverne" hysterical!

Posted by Laverne&Shirley | June 3, 2009 12:03 AM

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