"Madison Square is probably best known around the world for lending its name to Madison Square Garden, which was a sports arena located just northeast of the park until 1925. The current Madison Square Garden, the fourth such building, is not in the area. Notable buildings around Madison Square include the Flatiron Building, the Met Life Tower, and the New York Life Building. A new exclusive luxury high-rise condominium tower, "One Madison Park", will rival the Met Life Tower in height." [Wikipedia]The lineup for Madison Square Park's annual Oval Lawn series of free Wednesday shows has been announced. Held in the same NYC location that Lucero and others are playing in June for the Big Apple BBQ, the series will offer eight free concerts this summer, ending with the previously reported John Scofield Trio show on August 5th.
Kicking off the 2009 season with a real "family affair," this triple bill features three uniquely talented voices of the highly acclaimed Wainwright family. Loudon Wainwright III headlines with his trademark self-effacing wit and broad humor. Sloan Wainwright, Loudon's sister, is known for a musical style blending pop, folk, jazz and blues. Lucy Wainwright Roche, Loudon's daughter, opens the show with her own bittersweet songwriting style, reminiscent of Joni Mitchell and Patty Griffith.The Wainwrights all have individual upcoming dates across the country, listed below. Lucy Wainwright Roche's schedule includes a NYC solo show at Joe's Pub on June 20th, a few days after the family show. Tickets are on sale. If you're wondering how these Wainwrights are related to each other and the rest, Sloan's website features a helpful family tree.
We also just posted a whole bunch of other free shows taking place in NYC parks this summer, and you can browse our Free Shows tag for even more than that.
Full Madison Square Park Oval schedule + directions, and all Wainwright dates, below...
*** Madison Square Park Oval series ***
June 17th - Loudon Wainwright III, Sloan Wainwright, Lucy Wainwright Roche, 6pm
Kicking off the 2009 season with a real "family affair," this triple bill features three uniquely talented voices of the highly acclaimed Wainwright family. Loudon Wainwright III headlines with his trademark self-effacing wit and broad humor. Sloan Wainwright, Loudon's sister, is known for a musical style blending pop, folk, jazz and blues. Lucy Wainwright Roche, Loudon's daughter, opens the show with her own bittersweet songwriting style, reminiscent of Joni Mitchell and Patty Griffith.
June 24th - Alex Cuba, 7pm
The "Alex Cuba sound" is an intoxicating mix of feel-good melodies, funk infused horns and latin rhythms. Cuba has garnered tremendous critical acclaim following his two Juno Awards for his first two albums and has shared the stage with such indie luminaries as Feist, Jose Gonzalez and Seu Jorge.
July 1st - The Claire Lynch Band, Missy Rainers & the New Hip, 6pm
Grammy nominated, International Bluegrass Music Association Female Vocalist of The Year Claire Lynch brings "one of the sweetest, purest and best lead voices in the music business today" (Dolly Parton) to Madison Square Park's Bluegrass & Barbeque Night. Opening the show is seven-time IBMA Bassist of the Year Missy Raines and her band of gifted young lions, The New Hip. Hill Country Barbeque Market complets the night's theme with an in-park BBQ pit.
July 8th - The Duhks, Red Molly, 6pm
The Grammy-nominated Duhks fuse roots music with funk, rock and world beats in their original eco-concious grooves. Currently touring as The Duhks Sustainability Project (greenduhks.com), the group is promoting their album Fast Paced World, nominated for a 2009 Juno Award for Roots & Traditional Album of The Year.
The female trio Red Molly mixes old and new in their fun, infectious Americana. Winners of the 2008 John Lennon Songwriting Contest and an Online Folk Festival Top 10 of 2008, the group is gaining recognition for their tight three-part harmonies and powerful stage presence.
July 15th - Don Byron plays Junior Walker, 7pm
Multi-instrumentalist and Pulitzer finalist Don Byron continues his role as musical historian and adventurer as he celebrates the legacy of Motown soul legend, Junior Walker. "Calling Don Byron a jazz musician is like calling the Pacific wet - it just doesn't begin to describe it. Byron has carpentered an extraordinary career precisely by obliterating the very idea of category." (TIME Magazine)
July 22nd - Jonatha Brooke, 7pm
Folk singer and guitarist Jonatha Brooke was just one of a select group of artists to be invited into the Guthrie Archives to create new works from his vast collection of lyrics, prose, poetry and artwork. Hear the startingly beautiful outcome collected on her self-released album The Works and live in Madison Square Park.
July 29th - Raul Malo, 7pm
Grammy-winner Raul Malo, former lead vocalist of the hugely popular groups The Mavericks and Los Super Seven, blends classic rock & roll, alt-country and salsa rhythms into his incredible live performances. Showing off his phrasing in his solo work, Rolling STone has put his voice on par with greats such as Frank Sinatra, George Jones and Roy Orbison.
August 5th - The John Scofield Trio, 7pm
Ever since joining the Miles Davis Band in 1982, Grammy-nominated guitarist and composer John Scofield has been blazing a path across generes from straight ahead jazz to funk, and gospel to R&B. His most recent release, Piety Street (EmArcy) is a collection of "old time Gospel" tunes done Scofield-style. Joining Scofield are long-time collaboarators Steve Swallow and Bill Stewart.
Madison Square Park is located in the Flatiron District, between Fifth and Madison Avenues and 23rd and 26th Streets, just 8 blocks south of the Empire State Building. To get there by subway, take the R, W or 6 train to 23rd Street. On weekends only you can also take the N train to 23rd street.Loudon Wainwright III - 2009 Tour Dates
Thu 05/21/2009 Aspen, CO Belly Up #
Fri 05/22/2009 Denver, CO Paramount Theatre #
Wed 06/17/2009 New York, NY Madison Square Park
Wed 07/08/2009 Evanston, IL SPACE
Thu 07/09/2009 Traverse City, MI Inside Out Gallery
Fri 07/10/2009 Harbor Springs, MI Bliss Fest
Sun 07/12/2009 Winnipeg, CANADA Winnipeg Folk Festival
Fri 08/07/2009 Edmonton, CANADA Edmonton Folk Festival
Sat 08/08/2009 Edmonton CANADA Edmonton Folk Festival
Sun 08/09/2009 Regina, CANADA Regina Folk Festival
Sat 08/15/2009 Amagansett, NY Stephen Talkhouse
Thu 10/01/2009 Montreal QC CANADA Pop Montreal Festival
Sun 10/04/2009 Cambridge, MA Sanders Theatre
Thu 10/08/2009 Tarrytown, NY Tarrytown Music Hall
Sat 10/10/2009 Westhampton Beach, NY Westhampton PAC
Mon 10/12/2009 Wilmington, DE Grand Opera House
Fri 11/06/2009 Eureka Springs, AR Ozark Folk Festival
# acoustic show opening for Hot Tuna
Sloan Wainwright - 2009 Tour Dates
Sun-May-31 N. Bethesda, MD STRATHMORE MUSIC WORKSHOP
Sat-Jun-13 Westfield, NJ COFFEE WITH CONSCIENCE @ 1st United Methodist Church of Westfield
Wed-Jun-17 New York, NY MADISON SQUARE MUSIC OVAL LAWN SERIES PRESENTS #
Fri-Jun-19 Pawling, NY TOWNE CRIER CAFE
Sat-Jun-20 Katonah, NY PRIVATE EVENT
Sat-Jun-27 New Hope, PA THE NEW HOPE WINERY
Fri-Aug-28 Ashokan, NY SUMMERSONGS Songwriters Camp
# A WAINWRIGHT FAMILY CONCERT
Lucy Wainwright Roche - 2009 Tour Dates
Jun 17 Madison Square Park New York, New York
Jun 20 Joe's Pub New York, New York
Jun 24 The Musician Leicester
Jun 25 Glee Club Birmingham
Jun 26 Borderline London
Jun 27 Outsider Festival Inverness
Jun 28 Glastonbury Festival Glastonbury
Jun 29 Cellars at Eastney Southsea
Jul 2 Carnegie Halls Dunfermline
Jul 5 Spring and Airbrake Belfast
Jul 8 The Ruby Lounge Manchester
Jul 9 Cluny Newcastle
Jul 10 House Concert York
Jul 25 Falcon Ridge Folk Festival Hillsdale, New York
Aug 14 Tuft Theater Denver, Colorado
Aug 15 Belly Up Aspen (supporting Rufus Wainwright) Aspen, Colorado
Aug 16 Deer Valley Resort ( supporting Madeline Peyroux) Park City, Utah