Back in 1998, UK folkie Billy Bragg teamed up with up and coming alt.country act Wilco, to write and record new songs culled together from a treasure trove of previous unheard and unrecorded Woody Guthrie lyrics. Called Mermaid Avenue, for the street that Guthrie and his family lived on in Coney Island, the recording sessions yielded enough material to be spread across two albums, that were released two years apart, and feature a number of songs that both Bragg and Wilco still perform in concert.
With Guthrie’s centennial birthday being celebrated all throughout 2012, its no surprise that the sessions for these HT approved albums are being revisited, and will be released as four-disc box set. On April 21, Nonesuch Records will release Mermaid Avenue: The Complete Sessions, which will include the original two volumes of Mermaid Avenue, a third volume with 17 previously unreleased recordings from those sessions, plus the 1999 documentary on the sessions, Man in the Sand, as well as a 48-page booklet with new liner notes by Nora Guthrie. Mermaid Avenue, Volume III, will also be made available digitally, separate from the box set.
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Finally, earlier this year the Brooklyn Academy Of Music announced that they would be turning over the keys to the building to The National’s Aaron and Bryce Dessner to curate a music festival this spring dubbed Crossing Brooklyn Ferry, after a Walt Whitman poem. The three-day fest, which is set to take place from May 3 – 5, will utilize all three spaces within the building and be headlined by The Walkman, St. Vincent and Beruit, and will features sets from the likes of Sharon Van Etten, The Antlers, Caveman, Atlas Sound and more. Three-day passes will run you $110 , and will go-sale to the public on March 6, with individual day-passes going on-sale on March 12, for $45.