Red Butte Garden has booked its full lineup, and it's a mix of familiar faces (Brandi Carlile, Chris Isaak, Norah Jones) and unexpected newbies (Steve Martin on the banjo! Allen Toussaint! Willie!)---
The biggest news is that the recently renovated venue is hosting a whopping 21 shows this year—more than any previous summer. And while the lineup lacks some of the adventurous choices of recent years—there's no Wilco, Death Cab for Cutie or Avett Brothers—there are plenty of shows that will inevitably become some of the highlights of the summer concert season.
Among the shows I'm most looking forward to: Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers (June 16) kicking out "an evening of bluegrass and the banjo." New Orleans legend Allen Toussaint with Dirty Dozen Brass Band (August 8), John Prine (August 19) and, of course, Willie Nelson, a long-time fave (September 10).
Here's the full lineup. Tickets go on sale for Red Butte Garden members April 19, and for the general public on May 3. Prices will be available at the Red Butte Garden Web site Wednesday.
June 6—Kenny Wayne Shepherd
June 16—Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers
June 18—Joss Stone
June 28—JJ Grey & Mofro with Todd Snider and Great American Taxi
July 7—Joan Baez with Guy Clark
July 11—Brandi Carlile
July 13—Barenaked Ladies with Kris Allen
July 14—Lyle Lovett and His Large Band
July 25—Rhythm Devils featuring Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann, Keller Williams, Sikiru Adepoju, Davy Knowles and Andy Hess
August 1—Mary Chapin Carpenter
August 4—Natalie Merchant
August 8—Allen Toussaint with Dirty Dozen Brass Band and Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue
August 10—Chris Isaak
August 15—The Swell Season
August 19—John Prine
August 20—Norah Jones and Corinne Bailey Rae
August 22—A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor: Summer Love Tour
August 29—Doobie Brothers
September 1—Sheryl Crow
September 10—Willie Nelson