[Photo: Larry Neuzel | (L-R) Jim Host (Former Ky. Commerce Sec.), Sec. Mike Berry (Cabinet Secretary for Tourism, Arts & Heritage), Michael Johnathon | Download PNG]

WoodSongs Secures Global Partnership With Kentucky Department Of Tourism

FRANKFORT, Ky. (June 20, 2022) – The Kentucky Department of Tourism  (KDT) has formed a global partnership with folksinger Michael Johnathon’s syndicated Lexington-based radio and TV broadcast, WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour. 

Supported by Lexington’s tourism office, VisitLEX, the KDT has also found a compatible, cost effective and global partner in the family-friendly WoodSongs broadcast to help further its own initiative of promoting the music, arts and culture of Kentucky beyond the state’s borders to a long-standing and well-established global audience.  

“VisitLEX is proud to have supported Woodsongs from the very beginning, when the studio space for weekly tapings capped out at 12 people.” says Mary Quinn Ramer, president of VisitLEX. “From those humble beginnings, Woodsongs has grown into a staple in the Lexington community, regularly selling out the Lyric Theater downtown and broadcasting globally to friends near and far. We applaud Michael Johnathon and his dedicated team for the work they do to highlight Lexington and the commonwealth of Kentucky each week on Woodsongs.”

“The Kentucky Department of Tourism is honored to be a part of promoting WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour, which is such a time-honored tradition,” said Mike Mangeot, commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Tourism. “As the birthplace of bluegrass, Kentucky’s impact on American music is profound, and our musical roots extend globally. This partnership helps highlight how important Kentucky’s musical heritage is to our culture and communities.”  

Recently upgraded to HDTV production equipment, WoodSongs continues to grow its radio affiliate base, enhance its online presence, and expand its already large TV audience by inviting people from around the world to visit and experience the welcoming “front porch” of Kentucky, which is at the crossroads of America’s folk, country and bluegrass music communities.

“To me, this is the Rich Strike of live audience radio programs,” said WoodSongs founder and host, Michael Johnathon. “No one gave it much chance to succeed, but it started and remains a completely volunteer run production. I trusted the audience and I trusted the artists.” 

WoodSongs broadcasts to a massive global audience through a partner network of more than 500 affiliate radio stations worldwide, nationwide through several TV networks, including RFD-TV every Friday at 6 p.m. ET, various PBS TV affiliates, including KET-TV, and on-demand streaming TV like Country Road TV. The show is broadcast in 177 nations by American Forces Radio Network, to every U.S. military base around the world, and is live-streamed 44 Mondays a year on WoodSongs’ YouTube channel & Facebook page. 

For official show information, artist bios, ticket sales or a complete list of where to listen and watch, visit WoodSongs.com.

Johnathon and his WoodSongs volunteer community also recently completed a charitable effort to help restore music to the ravaged communities throughout Western Kentucky from the December 2021 tornadoes. Known as WoodSongs Tornado Relief Effort, the program collected more than 1,000 instruments from around the world and distributed those instruments to tornado victims in March. The effort overall was recognized by Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear during his Team Kentucky Update press conference in February

“I believe love is the greatest transaction of the arts,” Johnathon continued, “and Kentucky was the best place in America for an idea like WoodSongs to grow from.”

About WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour
WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour is an all-volunteer, live audience celebration of grassroots, bluegrass, country and folk music and the artists who make it. Produced 44 Mondays per year from the historic Lyric Theater in Lexington, Kentucky the show airs worldwide on 537 radio stations from Australia to Ireland and across the United States. It also airs on American Forces Radio Network twice each weekend in 177 nations, every military base and US Naval ship around the world. It is broadcast into millions of homes as a public television series on KET in Kentucky and PBS stations coast-to-coast, nationwide every Friday on RFD-TV, America’s Most Important Rural Network, and streaming on several online services including YouTube and the popular CountryRoadTV.com.

About Kentucky Department of Tourism
The Kentucky Department of Tourism is an agency within the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, under the leadership of Secretary Mike Berry. The department continues to build upon Kentucky’s signature tourism industries of horses, bourbon, music, arts, outdoors, history, culture and cuisine to reach new audiences and position Kentucky as a top-tier travel destination for visitors internationally and domestically. Kentucky tourism is an $8.9 billion industry in the commonwealth and serves as a mechanism for helping stimulate the economy in local communities.

 # # #

Michael Johnathon & WoodSongs Contacts:
Media & Publicity: Jason W. Ashcraft | jwa@jwamedia.com |  (615) 991-1125
Radio: radio@woodsongs.com | (859) 255-5700

 

Kentucky Department of Tourism Contact:
Media: Angela Blank | angelag.blank@ky.gov | (502) 892-4001

Photo/Logo Assets: 

[Photo: Larry Neuzel | (L-R) Jim Host (Former Ky. Commerce Sec.), Sec. Mike Berry (Cabinet Secretary for Tourism, Arts & Heritage), Michael Johnathon | Download PNG]

[Logo files | Download JPG]

WS-CRTV-logos

Tune In: WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour Set To Premiere On Country Road TV With Special Guests Riders In The Sky, Streaming June 1

Premiere episode kicks off with WoodSongs’ 1000th show taping featuring
Grand Ole Opry members Riders In The Sky & tween yodeling cowgirl sensation Phoebe White

New episodes stream weekly on “WoodSongs Wednesdays” across Country Road TV platform, including Facebook and YouTube pages

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (May 23, 2022) – Beginning Wednesday, June 1 Country Road TV (CRTV) will welcome the addition of folk singer Michael Johnathon’s WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour to their highly-acclaimed lineup of country music and lifestyle themed TV programming. Kicking off what will be known as ‘WoodSongs Wednesdays,’ the premiere episode to begin streaming will be WoodSongs’ 1000th show featuring America’s favorite cowboys, Grand Ole Opry members Riders In The Sky, with an incredible WoodSongs’ Kid, the tween yodeling cowgirl Phoebe White. The June 1 premiere episode will stream for FREE in its entirety on CRTV’s Watch Now page for anyone, with new shows from the WoodSongs’ video vault being added weekly across CRTV’s paid platform. 

“The evergreen quality of WoodSongs matches up perfectly with our audience,” said Adam Black, Co-founder & COO of Country Road TV. “Our audience will appreciate the heart and quality in each episode of WoodSongs and will want to watch it over and over again. We are beyond delighted to partner with Michael and this exceptional program.”

Country Road TV becomes an on-demand streaming TV network for WoodSongs, joining a massive global audience of more than 500 affiliate radio stations worldwide, several OTA TV networks including RFD-TV every Friday at 6pm ET, and various PBS TV affiliates (PBS). It is also available in 177 nations on American Forces Radio Network and live-streamed 44 Mondays a year on WoodSongs’ YouTube channel & Facebook page. CRTV’s FaceBook page and YouTube channel will also carry additional shows and content. For official show information, artist bios, ticket sales or a complete list of where to listen and watch, visit WoodSongs.com.

“It’s a celebration of the music from America’s front porch,” says Michael Johnathon from his own log cabin front porch in Kentucky. “It’s about the artists and songs and spirit of rural America driven by the excitement and power of a live audience. Viewers on Country Road TV get to sit back and let the cares of the world drift away as we take a step back into the tradition of old-time radio, but with a fresh approach. It’s a live audience radio show filmed for television.”

About Country Road TV:
Country Road TV is your unlimited one stop for all things True Country Music. We celebrate the legacy of Country Music by spotlighting the great and colorful performers, both past and present, who made original country music what it is today. Just some of the shows you’ll receive are Country’s Family Reunion, Larry’s Country Diner, The Joey & Rory Show, Marty Robbins Spotlight, and WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour with new content added every month.

About WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour:
WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour is an all volunteer, live audience celebration of grassroots, bluegrass, country and folk music and the artists who make it. Produced 44 Mondays per year from the historic Lyric Theatre in Lexington, Kentucky, the show airs worldwide on 537 radio stations from Australia to Ireland, and across the United States. It is also aired on American Forces Radio Network twice each weekend in 177 nations, and on every military base and US Naval ship around the world. It is also broadcasted into millions of homes as a PBS-TV series on KET in Kentucky, Friday’s on RFD-TV, America’s most important rural network, and streaming on Country Road TV.

# # #

Logo Files:

[Logo files | Download JPG]

WoodSongs Show #1000 Photo Assets:

[Photo: Larry Neuzel | Show #1000 with Riders In The Sky | Download PNG]

[Photo: Larry Neuzel | Show #1000 Cast with Riders In The Sky | Download PNG]

[AfterBurn by Michael Johnathon | Download art]

Folksinger Michael Johnathon Releases 19th Studio Album AFTERBURN, Songs Of Power, Peace, War & Love

“vibrantly aesthetic, pleasingly melodic and wholly heartfelt…”
Russell Trunk’s Exclusive Magazine

“…big bombastic drums, huge synths, soaring guitars and an anthemic chorus…”

Strutter Magazine (Sweden)

Featuring musical collaborations with the late JD Crowe, and other iconic musicians like John McEuen, Rob Ickes, Tony Migliore & more

AFTERBURN, out now by way of PoetMan Records & The Orchard [orcd.co/afterburnfolk]; Available to radio programmers and industry via PlayMPE

Hard copy album requests for media please email physical mailing address to jwa@jwamedia.com

LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 21, 2022) – Folksinger Michael Johnathon is not exactly a “normal” folksinger, as he proves once again on his 19th studio album, AFTERBURN, out now by way of PoetMan Records & The Orchard [orcd.co/afterburnfolk] and at PlayMPE for radio programmers.

AFTERBURN is the word used when something truly rattles the cages and leaves people with a startled, surprised reaction. It‘s the accelerated power of a rocket as it’s taking off. AFTERBURN grapples with the subjects of power & peace, war & love all in the context of the global “front porch,” launching “folk” from the coffeehouse and into arena level. Literally. 

“To me, folk music is front porch … plus a lot more. I took everything I knew about life as a folksinger, from traveling the hills and hollers of Appalachia to playing on stages, turned it upside down, mixed it up, and tried to see how aggressive this “folk” canvas could be and still be considered part of the music style I love,” says Michael Johnathon from his log cabin home near Lexington, Kentucky. “That’s when I wrote that poem … folk can be everything and anything because it gave birth to it all.”

If anyone has supported and embodied the idea and image of a global Troubadour, it’s Michael Johnathon. Indeed, if Folk is the “Mother of all music” then AFTERBURN certainly reflects all the colors of that musical rainbow, and his career has reflected all of those musical textures. From the screaming long-neck banjo driven “Techno-Folk” to the majestic 61-piece symphony of “The Dream,” the commentary of “Cyber Bubba” to the lament of “Cars,” every song is a story, every song is a musical cinescape, a painting on a canvas of guitars, banjo and mandolins colored with rock bands and … yes … symphony orchestras.

“I love classical music, I love Pink Floyd, Pete Seeger and Dan Fogelberg,” Johnathon explains. “Woody Guthrie would have been one of the first to plug in a keyboard if they had them back then. What made Bill Monroe a pioneer and Father of Bluegrass was his willingness to try new things. To Change. He was the Nine Inch Nails of his day. Some may really like this. The purists will no doubt try to make fun of it … it may not be their “cup of tea.” 

But then, Michael Johnathon is not exactly inviting you for a pleasant cup of tea, either. AFTERBURN launches banjos, mandolins and guitars to heart pounding, unexpected levels and remains in the comfortable tapestry of the folk world by a banjo playing troubadour … out to surprise, shock, even bewilderment.

Album name: AfterBurn
Release date: April 15, 2022 (digital) / May 20, 2022 (Physical)
Record label: PoetMan Records / The Orchard
Songwriter: Michael Johnathon
Produced by: Michael Johnathon
UPC#: 659696535824
Buy/Stream/Listen: michaeljohnathon.com or orcd.co/afterburnfolk
Album highlights: View/Download PDF

Track Listing: 

  1. Techno-Folk  
  2. America (with Rob Ickes)
  3. World We Made  
  4. The Dream  
  5. Assassins In The Kingdom  
  6. Dreams Of Fire  
  7. Benediction (with Rob Ickes)  
  8. Young & Alone  
  9. Cyber Bubba (with JD Crowe, Rob Ickes & Kati Penn)
  10. Cars  
  11. Shady Grove

About Michael Johnathon:
From symphony halls to coffeehouses, the hollers of Appalachia to inner city clubs, Michael Johnathon proudly refers to himself … privately, publicly and globally … as a “folksinger” and has released 19 studio recorded albums. He’s the author of six published books (WoodSongs 5 released in 2022), the screenwriter for the upcoming Caney Creek motion picture, organizer of the national association of front porch musicians called SongFarmers, the symphony album Songs of Rural America. He’s the creator and host of the live audience broadcast of the WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour with an audience of over two million listeners each week on 500 public radio stations, public TV coast-to-coast, the RFD-TV Network nationwide, American Forces Radio Network in 177 nations and schools across north America. Jonathan also recently won the prestigious Kentucky Governor’s Milner Award of the Arts in 2020.

                                                                                           # # #

Art/Photo Downloads: 

[AfterBurn by Michael Johnathon | Download art]

[Photo: WoodSongs/Larry Neuzel | Download PNG]

WS-Show-Cast_Ep1000_2019

Kentucky Music Hall of Fame To Celebrate WoodSongs In Special History Exhibit Opening, Saturday April 30

This FREE & open to the public event takes place on Saturday, April 30 at 1pm at Kentucky Music Hall of Fame during the 2022 National Gathering of SongFarmers in Renfro Valley

Photo gallery from past WoodSongs & SongFarmer events and gatherings [view/download]

RENFRO VALLEY, Ky. (April 19, 2022) – The 12 foot wide WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour stage sign will be dedicated as part of a special history exhibit set to be unveiled at the Kentucky Music Hall Of Fame on Saturday, April 30 at 1pm ET in Renfro Valley, Kentucky during the 2022 National Gathering of SongFarmers, organized by the WoodSongs Front Porch Association.  

The original WoodSongs sign was used through 1000 live audience broadcasts since 1998, when Folksinger Michael Johnathon originally launched the show. Since then, it has been seen in millions of homes across North America on PBS-TV (regionally on KET), nationally on RFD-TV, along with tens of millions more on YouTube videos. More than 60,000 fans have attended the broadcast tapings of WoodSongs at the Lyric Theater in Lexington, Kentucky.   

“We were not sure what to do with the old sign,” explained folksinger Michael Johnathon, creator and host of the syndicated broadcast. “We called it ‘Franken-Sign’ because it was repaired so many times. But so much history belonged to it. We did not want to cut it up and sell it … we wanted to find a permanent resting place for it.”  

The WoodSongs sign has become a major symbol of Kentucky media history alongside the Renfro Valley Barn Dance and others, and will be on permanent display along with a video presentation of the history of WoodSongs, a tribute to the amazing volunteer crew that made this happen. 

Thanks to the kindness of an audience member, WoodSongs has since replaced the original sign with a brand new stage sign.  

“The Kentucky Music Hall of Fame exists to preserve and promote the rich musical heritage of Kentucky and its people,” said Emily Bullock of the Kentucky Hall of Fame and Music Museum. “It is only fitting that a Woodsongs display would find its home in our museum with such a meaningful history and contribution to music in Kentucky and across the world.”

About WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour:
WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour is an all volunteer, live audience celebration of grassroots music and the artists who make it. Produced 44 Mondays per year from the historic Lyric Theatre in Lexington, Kentucky, the show airs worldwide on 537 radio stations from Australia to Ireland, and across the United States. It is also aired on American Forces Radio Network twice each weekend in 177 nations, and on every military base and US Naval ship around the world. It is also broadcasted into millions of homes as a PBS-TV series on KET in Kentucky, and on Friday and Wednesday’s on RFD-TV, America’s Most Important Rural Network.

About Kentucky Music Hall Of Fame:
The Kentucky Music Hall of Fame and Museum joined Renfro Valley as a premiere tourist attraction, opening in 2002.  The entrance to the building is unique to any other museum as it was once the original riding stables of John Lair. The museum is filled with a collection of artifacts and memorabilia highlighting the careers of over 50 inductees.  A common misconception is that the Kentucky Music Hall of Fame focuses mainly on country and bluegrass related artists, however there are inductees from all genres of music including The Backstreet Boys, Loretta Lynn, Florence Henderson, Rosemary Clooney, Keith Whitley, Boots Randolph and so many more. You can also learn the history of music dating back to the 1700’s or pick up area information in the visitor center located in the museum lobby.  The Kentucky Music Hall of Fame is open daily, year round.

About WoodSongs Front Porch Association:
WoodSongs Front Porch Association is an international network of “front porch” minded musicians, songwriters and fans who simply love simple, rural music. This organization is about EVERYBODY who loves to pick, play and sing. If you feel the music business left you behind, join us. We will show you how to make music a powerful part of your life, even if it is not your livelihood. WFPA’s mission is to help music lovers find a new, defined direction for their music. To gather the global community of front porch minded musicians and help them do good work, bring roots music education into schools free of charge, and enhance communities by redirecting the tremendous energies of local musicians. We call our members “SongFarmers.”

 # # #

Photo/Art Downloads:

[Photo: Larry Neuzel, WoodSongs | Show #1000 Cast with Riders In The Sky | Download PNG]

[Download JPG]

 

[SongFarmers Poster | Download PNG]

[SongFarmers Poster | Download PNG]

6th Annual National Gathering of SongFarmers Set For April 29-30 At Kentucky Music Hall Of Fame At Renfro Valley

Plus, WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour to receive Kentucky Music Hall of Fame dedication with special history exhibit 

Photo gallery from past SongFarmer events and gatherings [click to view/download

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 31, 2022) – Folksinger Michael Johnathon and the WoodSongs Front Porch Association (WFPA) is excited to announce the schedule for the 6th annual National Gathering of SongFarmers scheduled for Friday, April 29 and Saturday, April 30 at the historic Kentucky Music Hall of Fame & Museum estate in Renfro Valley, Ky. SongFarmers from across the country will gather for music, workshops, song circles, bluegrass jams and films. 

“A SongFarmer is any  artist, musician, songwriter and fan who wants to use their passion and music to make their homes, families and communities better,” says founder Michael Johnathon. “The changes in the world of music have left many skilled, talented players behind in the digital dust. We believe they still matter, they still have purpose and they still are valid.”

The WFPA community of SongFarmers has grown to 84 active chapters from Australia to Ireland, and across the United States.  

A highlight of the weekend will be the public dedication of the new History of WoodSongs exhibit Saturday at 1PM, and will include an address and performance by folksinger Michael Johnathon.

FREE public concerts are scheduled for both Friday and Saturday nights at the amphitheater and will feature live music performances given by the WFPA members from around the world. The event’s workshops are reserved for WFPA members, but anyone may join WFPA for only $25 annually, which also includes two complimentary tickets to the annual SongFarmers gathering event. WFPA members planning to attend are asked to pre-register at songfarmers.org/2022gathering

“Never before in the last 100 years have the gentle spirit of America’s front porch been so needed,” says Vermont folksinger Rik Palieri. “And that’s what SongFarmers do, they are building a musical front porch around the world.”

2022 National Gathering of SongFarmers

Kentucky Music Hall of Fame
2590 Richmond St, Mt Vernon, KY 40456

SCHEDULE
** Denotes FREE & open to the public

Friday, April 29

2:00-5:00pm:  Welcome & check-in

4:00-4:45pm:  Shape Note Singing with RON PEN

5:00-5:45pm:  Welcome to the Group and Town Hall with KARI ESTRIN

6:00-8:30pm:  **Free Concert in the Amphitheater with MC BILL HUDSON

Saturday, April 30 

8:30am:            Creative Board breakfast

9:00-10:00am:  Coffee and donuts

10:00am:          Why Start a Chapter

10:00am:          Banjo Swap

11:00am:           How to Start a SongFarmers Chapter 

11:00am:           Mandolin 101

12:00pm:           Lunch break

1:00pm:             **WoodSongs Hall of Fame Dedication

2:00pm:             **“What Does it mean to Build a Front Porch Around the World”                                                             with MICHAEL JOHNATHON

3:00pm:             **The Songs of SongFarmers 

3:00pm:             **Guitar Workshop

4:00pm:             **Press, Media & Publicity

4:00pm:             **How to Zoom

5:00pm:             Dinner Break

5:30-8:30pm      **Free Concert in the Amphitheater with MC BILL HUDSON 

About WoodSongs Front Porch Association:
WoodSongs Front Porch Association is an international network of “front porch” minded musicians, songwriters and fans who simply love simple, rural music. This organization is about EVERYBODY who loves to pick, play and sing. If you feel the music business left you behind, join us. We will show you how to make music a powerful part of your life, even if it is not your livelihood. WFPA’s mission is to help music lovers find a new, defined direction for their music. To gather the global community of front porch minded musicians and help them do good work, bring roots music education into schools free of charge, and enhance communities by redirecting the tremendous energies of local musicians. We call our members “SongFarmers.”

# # #

Event Art Download: 

[SongFarmers Poster | Download JPG]

[Download JPG]

WS_Tornado_logo

WoodSongs Tornado Relief Effort Readies To Distribute Free Musical Instruments To Tornado Victims, March 18 & 19

Free replacement instruments for tornado victims will be distributed March 18 in Mayfield and March 19 in Dawson Springs and Owensboro, Kentucky

Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear recognizes relief effort in weekly Team Kentucky Update press conference 

Tornado victims may visit WoodSongs.com/Tornado or make a priority request by emailing wfpa@woodsongs.com to request a replacement instrument, or show up on March 18/19 to select their free replacement

A photo/video gallery from the collection & restoration effort is located here

“Let’s not underestimate the comfort music and art can bring to families and neighbors in a time of great loss.” – Michael Johnathon

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Folksinger Michael Johnathon along with his faithful worldwide WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour community have announced distribution dates of March 18 & 19 in Western Kentucky for the WoodSongs Tornado Relief Effort (WoodSongs.com/Tornado). The program was called-into-action by Johnathon on December 14th in a YouTube video where he called upon anyone anywhere to donate musical instruments to replace those lost during the tornadoes throughout regions surrounding Western Kentucky. The program has collected and restored nearly 1000 instruments which will be given out for FREE to anyone from anywhere who lost an instrument during the December tornados.  Some donations came from as far away as England.

FREE INSTRUMENT PICKUP DATES & LOCATIONS FOR TORNADO VICTIMS: 

Friday, March 18 from 5 – 8pm:
Graves County Public Library
601 N 17th Street
Mayfield, KY 42066

Saturday, March 19 from 12 noon-4pm:
West Dawson Music Venue
3420 Huddleston Loop Rd
Dawson Springs, KY 42408

Saturday, March 19 from 6 – 8pm:
Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum
311 W. Second St.
Owensboro, KY 42301

*Priority will be given to those with a FEMA or RED CROSS card, but nobody will be turned away while supplies last.

Several music stores across four states volunteered and became drop-off points for the general public, including Currier’s Music World in Richmond, Kentucky, The Mandolin Store in Nashville, Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum in Owensboro, Mom’s Music in Louisville, Musician’s Pro Music Store in Bowling Green, Maxwell’s House of Music in Jeffersonville, Indiana, and at House of Musical Traditions in metro Washington D.C. have since collected more than 800 donated instruments from guitars, to banjos, to pianos and drum kits. 

Johnathon explained the reason for the program’s creation on his YouTube channel in December, and called for the immediate need to restore music and art to those affected by the tornado devastation. WoodSongs Tornado Relief Effort is organized by WoodSongs Inc, a 501c(3) non-profit association based in Lexington, Kentucky.

Anyone can receive an instrument, while supplies last. Visit WoodSongs.com/tornado and fill out the request form so the volunteers can keep track of what is needed and where.

“I believe that love is the greatest transaction of the arts, it drives everything we do, everything we create and everything we feel,” Johnathon said. “This is a time to put our politics, opinions and divisions aside and be loving neighbors to those in real, actual need. Let’s not underestimate the comfort music and art can bring to families and neighbors in a time of great loss.” 

About WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour:
The WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour is an all volunteer, live audience celebration of grassroots music and the artists who make it. Produced 44 Mondays per year from the historic Lyric Theatre in Lexington, Kentucky, the show airs worldwide on 537 radio stations from Australia to Ireland, and across the United States. It also airs on American Forces Radio Network twice each weekend in 177 nations, and on every military base and US Naval ship around the world. It is also broadcasted into millions of homes on PBS-TV affiliates, and each Friday on RFD-TV, America’s Most Important Rural Network.

# # #

Collection Effort Media Coverage:

Spectrum News 1 (Frankfort/Lexington)
WSMV-TV (Nashville)
WBKO-TV  (Bowling Green)
WKYT-TV segment #1 (Frankfort/Lexington)
WKYT-TV segment #2 (Frankfort/Lexington)
WAVE-TV (Louisville)
WDRB-TV  (Louisville)
WLKY-TV (Louisville)
The Messenger (Dawson Springs)
Distribution Effort Media Coverage:
RFD-TV (Nashville)
WLKY-TV (Louisville)
WKMS-FM (Paducah)
WKYU-FM (Bowling Green)
WEKU-FM (Richmond)
WUKY-FM (Lexington)
Murray Ledger & Times (Murray)
WPSD-TV (Paducah)
WDKY-TV (Lexington)
Messenger Inquirer (Owensboro)
WEVV-TV (Evansville)
WEHT-TV (Owensboro/Evansville)
Spectrum News 1 (Louisville)
WEKU-FM (Richmond)
NPR “Weekend Edition” (Washington D.C.)

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear Team Kentucky Update Feb. 17:

Marketing Resources: 

[Poster: Download PNG]

[Watch YouTube | Download Mp4/MOV file]

CVR_CosmicBanjo WEB

Folksinger Michael Johnathon To Release 18th Studio Album ‘Cosmic Banjo’ January 21 On PoetMan Records

“What Johnathon does with the banjo is quite unique and entrancing”
Maverick Country

“Michael Johnathon continues to push conventional music boundaries with Cosmic Banjo”
– Jim Monaghan, WDHA-FM 

“…a useful reminder that it is an integral part of Americana music and deserving of far greater respect than it is often accorded.”
– Mike Davies, Folking.com

Featuring musical collaborations with Nitty Gritty Dirt Band’s John McEuen, New Grass Revival’s Sam Bush & John Cowan, Bluegrass great Ronnie McCoury, IBMA award winner Rob Ickes, Kentucky Cellist Ben Sollee, & Niles String Quartet

Listen now on SoundCloud or buy at michaeljohnathon.com/banjo

Hard copy album requests for media please email physical mailing address to jwa@jwamedia.com

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Folksinger Michael Johnathon takes the banjo seriously on Cosmic Banjo, his 18th studio album due out January 21, 2022 on PoetMan Records. A celebration of the Pete Seeger style long neck banjo, Cosmic Banjo is the unexpected follow up to his Vincent van Gogh tribute album The Painter. It will be available across all major digital music platforms, and CDs available at michaeljohnathon.com/banjo.

Cosmic Banjo features several Bluegrass and roots music icons who collaborated with Johnathon in the studio. The opening track “Ballad of Bojangles” is a reimagined backstory of “Mister Bojangles,” made famous by the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. Founding member John McEuen plays mandolin on the song, and also appears on the Beatle-Esque interpretation of “Darlin’ Corey,” complete with a 21-piece string section and 17-time IBMA award winner Rob Ickes also performing. 

“The Baghdad Breakdown” brings a middle eastern flavor to bluegrass with contributions from New Grass Revival’s Sam Bush & John Cowan, along with bluegrass icon Ronnie McCoury, son of the great Del McCoury

“Regarding the title track, Cosmic Banjo wasn’t an accident, as I wrote and recorded it with Classical Gas in mind,” Johnathon explained. “The long neck banjo is not used very much these days, so I felt complete freedom to re-invent, re-interpret, re-discover the instrument with my personal way of playing.”

Michael’s unusual picking style uses a normal thumb pick, plus a metal pick on the first finger, but his second pick is upside down. That “picking and frailing” style was pioneered by folk music legend Pete Seeger, aggressively adjusted for Michael’s own unique banjo style of play. 

“I think I put a banjo song on every album I’ve ever recorded,” Johnathon said. “After The Painter album, it felt like it was time to celebrate the one instrument I picked up on the front porch, and in front of my wood stove in winter. Add some high-octane fuel to the music and give it a good kick in the rump.”

Album name: Cosmic Banjo
Release date: January 21, 2022
Record label: PoetMan Records
Produced by: Michael Johnathon
UPC#: 659696535329
Buy/Stream/Listen: michaeljohnathon.com/banjo or SoundCloud
Album highlights: View/Download PDF

Track Listing & Songwriters: 

    1. Ballad of Bojangles (Michael Johnathon)
    2. In the Evening (LeRoy Carr)
    3. MoonFire (Michael Johnathon)
    4. How Can I Keep from Singing (Michael Johnathon)
    5. Darlin’ Corey (Michael Johnathon)
    6. The Baghdad Breakdown (Michael Johnathon)
    7. Blue Skies (Irving Berlin) 
    8. East Virginia Blues (Michael Johnathon)
    9. Ban-Jokes (Michael Johnathon)
    10. Cosmic Banjo (Michael Johnathon)

About Michael Johnathon:
Folksinger Michael Johnathon recently won the prestigious Milner Award of the Arts in 2020. He is the screenwriter for the upcoming Caney Creek motion picture, a touring songwriter, author of five published books, playwright of the Walden Play performed in 42 countries, composer of the opera, Woody: For the People, organizer of the national association of front porch musicians called SongFarmers, the full symphony performances of SONGS OF RURAL AMERICA and as the creator and host of the live audience broadcast of the WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour with a radio audience of over two million listeners each week on 500 public radio stations, public television coast-to-coast, American Forces Radio Network in 177 nations and the RFD-TV Network nationwide. His latest book, WoodSongs 5, is being released January, 2022 along with his 18th studio album, Cosmic Banjo.

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Photo Downloads: 

[Cosmic Banjo by Michael Johnathon | Download art]

[Photo: WoodSongs/Larry Neuzel | Download PNG]

WS_Tornado_logo

WoodSongs Tornado Relief Effort Inspires Industry Support From Brands & Music Stores Throughout Kentucky, Tennessee, Indiana & Washington D.C.

“Let’s not underestimate the comfort music and art can bring to families and neighbors in a time of great loss.” – Michael Johnathon

Donation and drop-off deadline of January 15 announced as focus shifts to distribution efforts from late January through early February

New general public drop-off locations established at local music stores in Nashville, Tennessee, Louisville, Bowling Green, & Richmond, Kentucky, Jeffersonville, Indiana & metro Washington D.C. 

Tornado victims and those who wish to donate instruments or services may visit WoodSongs.com/Tornado or email radio@woodsongs.com for assistance

Additional companies, brands, music stores, or musicians who wish to contribute to the overall effort, please contact jwa@jwamedia.com or radio@woodsongs.com 

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Folksinger Michael Johnathon has called upon music communities throughout Kentucky, Tennessee and beyond – along with his faithful worldwide WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour community – and they are responding. Still being mobilized and organized, the WoodSongs’ Tornado Relief Effort is thankful for the support from Martin Guitar Company, who will donate guitar strings for donated guitars needing replacements. Additional brand alliances are being formulated, and will be announced at WoodSongs.com/Tornado.   

Additional regional drop-off locations for the general public to make donations of working musical instruments have been set up in Nashville at The Mandolin Store, in Owensboro beginning January 3 at Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame, in Louisville at Mom’s Music, in Bowling Green at Musician’s Pro Music Store, and in Jeffersonville, Indiana at Maxwell’s House of Music, and in metro Washington D.C. at House of Musical Traditions.

Currier’s Music World in Richmond, Kentucky is functioning as the main redistribution point for the program, and will assist in shipping coordination of donated instruments to those musicians who resided in the tornado’s path. The general public is asked to direct ship any instrument donations directly to Currier’s Music World, with “WoodSongs Tornado Relief Effort” marked on the packaging.

WoodSongs’ Tornado Relief Effort  will replace damaged or lost musical instruments for FREE for any person or organization affected by the recent tornados which devastated communities throughout Kentucky, Arkansas, Illinois, Missouri and Tennessee. WoodSongs is a 501c(3) non-profit association based in Lexington, Kentucky.

Johnathon explained the reason for the program’s creation on his YouTube channel recently, and has called for the immediate need to restore music and art to those affected by the tornado devastation.

“I believe that love is the greatest transaction of the arts, it drives everything we do, everything we create and everything we feel,” Johnathon said. “This is a time to put our politics, opinions and divisions aside and be loving neighbors to those in real, actual need. Let’s not underestimate the comfort music and art can bring to families and neighbors in a time of great loss.”

IF YOU LIVE IN THE TORNADO ALLEY and need an instrument replaced, send an email to radio@woodsongs.com and we will assist you. Make sure you put TORNADO in the subject heading, include the instrument you are looking for, an address it can be sent to, your name, phone number, and other contact information. 

IF YOU HAVE AN INSTRUMENT YOU CAN DONATE, send an email to radio@woodsongs.com if you are not close to one of the drop-off locations. Make sure you include TORNADO in the subject heading, describing what you have, and include all your contact information. OR, package and self-ship to Currier’s Music World in Richmond, Kentucky with “WoodSongs Tornado Relief” on the packaging.

INSTRUMENT DROP-OFF LOCATIONS FOR PUBLIC:

Richmond, Kentucky:
Currier’s Music World
292 S 2nd St.
Richmond, KY 40475
(859) 623-6010

Owensboro, Kentucky:
Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame
311 W. Second St.
Owensboro, KY 42301
(270) 926-7891

Bowling Green, Kentucky:
Musician’s Pro Music Store
1440 Campbell Ln. Suite 300
Bowling Green, KY 42104
(270) 842-2433

Louisville, Kentucky:
Mom’s Music
1900 Mellwood Ave
Louisville, KY 40206
(502) 897-3304

Nashville, Tennessee: 
The Mandolin Store
907 Rivergate Parkway, Suite A4
Goodlettsville, TN 37072
(623) 933-8319

Jeffersonville, Indiana:
Maxwell’s House of Music
1710 E 10th St
Jeffersonville, IN 47130
(812) 283-3304

Washington D.C.:
House of Musical Traditions
7010 Westmoreland Ave.
Takoma Park, MD 20912
(301) 270-9090

DONATE SPECIFICALLY FOR THE MUSIC INSTRUMENT DISTRIBUTION: we can use your help to purchase replacement strings and repairs for instruments that might need special help. THERE ARE NO ADMINISTRATIVE FEES DEDUCTED, no one gets paid and all work is volunteer. You can send a tax-deductible donation for the WOODSONGS 501c(3) “TORNADO RELIEF EFFORT ONLY” to PayPal via WFPA@woodsongs.com

DONATE VIA CREDIT CARD FROM THE KENTUCKY.GOV WEBSITE: just click here

MUSIC STORES WANTING TO BECOME A DROP-OFF LOCATION:
Email: jwa@jwamedia.com Or radio@woodsongs.com

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[Watch YouTube | Download Mp4/MOV file]

[Download PNG]
[Donor Shipping Label: Download JPG]

[Photo: WoodSongs/Larry Neuzel | (L-R) TBS’ Larry Smith, Michael Johnathon, Makayla Johnathon, Caleb Johnathon | Download PNG]

Michael Johnathon Becomes Recipient Of Mentor Award Presented By Tomorrow’s Bluegrass Stars

Johnathon surprised with the award during a recent taping of WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Folksinger and roots musician Michael Johnathon recently became the latest recipient of the Mentor Award, presented by Tomorrow’s Bluegrass Stars, a non-profit organization which supports young, aspiring bluegrass musicians through encouragement, excitement, promotion and awareness for them to preserve yesterday’s bluegrass music for tomorrow. The organization’s President, Larry Smith, surprised Johnathon and his crew during a recent broadcast taping of WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour on Monday, November 29 at Lexington’s Lyric Theater, which featured an entire lineup of young, aspiring musicians and performers. 

The Mentor Award is presented annually to individuals as appreciation for outstanding support and encouragement of young Bluegrass Musicians. Johnathon became the second recipient of the award, with Ralph Stanley II who became the first recipient of the award. 

“Michael has been a staunch supporter for young folks for many years,” said Larry Smith, President of Tomorrow’s Bluegrass Stars. “We felt he deserved this award for his WoodSongs Kids segment, which has been such an honor for those kids who were invited to be on the show.” 

About Michael Johnathon:
Folksinger Michael Johnathon recently won the prestigious Milner Award of the Arts in 2020. He is the screenwriter for the upcoming Caney Creek motion picture, a touring songwriter, author of five published books, playwright of the Walden Play performed in 42 countries, composer of the opera, Woody: For the People, organizer of the national association of front porch musicians called SongFarmers, the full symphony performances of SONGS OF RURAL AMERICA and as the creator and host of the live audience broadcast of the WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour with a radio audience of over two million listeners each week on 500 public radio stations, public television coast-to-coast, American Forces Radio Network in 177 nations and the RFD-TV Network nationwide. His latest book, WoodSongs 5, is being released January 2022 along with his 18th studio album, Cosmic Banjo.

“Take the inventiveness of Bob Dylan, the melodic voice of John Denver, add the showmanship of Garrison Keillor … and that’s Michael Johnathon.” – Bob Spear, Heartland Review

About Tomorrow’s Bluegrass Stars:
Mission Statement: To support young, aspiring bluegrass musicians through encouragement, excitement, promotion and awareness for them to preserve “yesterday’s” bluegrass music for “tomorrow”.

Purpose Statement: To establish a group that supports and encourages young bluegrass musicians through embracing them, their families and their bands and promoting opportunities for these musicians within the bluegrass community through exposure, interaction, education, showcasing talent, mentoring, networking, resources, connections and events.

Vision Statement: To experience a bluegrass environment where the young musicians are discovered and valued for their musical abilities, investment in bluegrass music and most especially for being the future of bluegrass music through receiving opportunities and the legacy of bluegrass music to share with the current generation and to pass on to future generations. 

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[Photo: WoodSongs/Larry Neuzel | (L-R) TBS’ Larry Smith, Michael Johnathon, Makayla Johnathon, Caleb Johnathon | Download PNG]

[Photo: WoodSongs/Larry Neuzel | WoodSongs Kids Show #1027 Cast Photo | Download PNG]

[Photo: Courtesy WoodSongs/Larry Neuzel | Download PNG]

[December 6, Show #1028 Poster | Download JPG]

Michael Johnathon’s WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour Set To Wrap 2021 Season On December 6 With Bluegrass Duo Darin & Brooke Aldridge

Also appearing Dec. 6 will be critically-acclaimed Americana singer-songwriter, Cristina Vane

Watch the show’s live-stream FREE on Woodsongs’ Facebook or YouTube channel or buy tickets to the live taping at Tix.com

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Folksinger Michael Johnathon is set to wrap the 2021 season of WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour on Monday, December 6 at Lexington’s Lyric Theatre with award winning Bluegrass duo Darin and Brooke Aldrige. The multiple IBMA winning, husband & wife pair from North Carolina will perform songs from their latest critically-acclaimed album, This Life We’re Living

Also appearing on December 6 is Italian-born Americana singer-songwriter Cristina Vane, who will perform music from her imposing debut album, Nowhere Sounds Lovely. Rolling Stone recently went on record saying Vane evokes Bonnie Rait and PJ Harvey on her single, “Badlands.” 

WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour airs on more than 500 radio stations worldwide, is also broadcasted on RFD-TV, and live-streamed on WoodSongs Facebook (@WoodSongs), and on the show’s YouTube channel. For additional show information, artist bios, and a complete list of where to listen and watch, visit WoodSongs.com

Tickets for the live taping at Lyric Theater may be purchased at Tix.com or by calling (859) 280-2201.

About WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour:
Launched in 1998, WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour is an all volunteer, live audience celebration of grassroots music and the artists who make it. Produced 44 Mondays per year from the historic Lyric Theatre in Lexington, Kentucky, the show airs worldwide on 537 radio stations from Australia to Ireland, and across the United States. It is also aired on American Forces Radio Network twice each weekend in 177 nations, and on every military base and US Naval ship around the world. It is also broadcasted into millions of homes as a PBS-TV series on KET in Kentucky, and on Friday and Wednesday’s on RFD-TV, America’s Most Important Rural Network.

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Photo Downloads: 

[December 6, Show #1028 Poster | Download JPG]