10/30/2009 - On Wednesday, October 28, 2009, John performed two songs at a tribute event for his friend, former NCAA and Indiana University President Myles Brand. John prefaced his solo acoustic performance of "Longest Days" from the Life Death Love and Freedom album noting the long friendship their shared and how Myles always thought everything John said was funny. John said Myles found comfort in "Longest Days" as he fought his battle, ultimately succumbing to pancreatic cancer.
Before the event-closing performance of "Save Read More
10/29/2009 - A Mellencamp-inspired audio CD “driving tour” of Jackson County, Indiana, is now available from the Jackson Country Visitor Center.
The hour-long program is entitled “The Roots of an American Rocker” and features stops at many of John’s old stomping grounds and a detailed map of his Seymour hometown. Stops include John’s boyhood home, Larrison’s Diner, Schneck Medical Center, Seymour High School, Emerson Elementary School, First Presbyterian Church, Shields Junior High School, P.J.’s House, Dakota Ridge, Rockford Ridge, Rok-Sey Roller Rink, Southern Indiana Center for the Arts, Grandma Laura’s and One Chamber Square. Several locations were featured in John's film debut "Falling From Grace" or in many of his locally filmed music videos.
The CD soundtrack features snippets of several of John’s songs, along with the voices of various friends and acquainta Read More
10/28/2009 - John's song lyrics have been added to the DISCOGRAPHY section of Mellencamp.com. Each album includes the lyrics for the songs included on that album along with the track listing and album credits. Click HERE to check it out. Read More
10/26/2009 - John's complete 9 song set at Farm Aid 2009 has been posted to YouTube, use the player below to view or click HERE. The concert was Sunday, October 4th, 2009 at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater outside of St. Louis, MO.
10/24/2009 - The Indiana Memorial Union Board, which celebrates its 100th
anniversary in December, will honor John during the annual Union Board dinner on
The board, which runs Indiana University’s landmark Memorial Union building, has
hosted the likes of Colin Powell, Bill Cosby, Kurt Vonnegut, Cornel West, Maya
Angelou and John, whom the board has presented in concert several times. It
sponsored his free 2000 Good Samaritan show in Woodlawn Field just off of the
Union, as well as his last campus concert, at Assembly Hall in 2002.
Made up of 16 student directors and four non-student directors, the board is
charged with campus programming that "entertains and educates" the IU community.
In recognition of its centennial celebration, IU president Michael McRobbie will
deliver the keynote address at the dinner.
John's participation in IU activities include his commencement address in 2000,
in which he advised graduates to "play it like you feel it! Read More
Something unusual was present at the press conference before the Farm Aid
2009 concert in St. Louis: a sense of optimism. Obviously, the situation in
which family farmers in America find themselves is bleak, but the activists,
farmers, and artists—including Farm Aid’s musical board members, Willie Nelson,
Neil Young, John Mellencamp, and Dave Matthews—insisted that hopeful signs were
on the horizon. First, people across the country are getting behind local-food
movements, being educated to the healthful, economical, and ethical benefits of
consuming food produced in and around one’s own zip code. Second, Farm Aid
officials pointed to the obvious change in the attitude toward family-farm
causes coming out of the new Administration in Washington: “We have an open
door,” said Executive Director Carolyn Mugar.
Still, enormous challenges remain, namely addressing the ongoing dairy crisis by
convincing the USDA to set milk prices that cover production cos Read More
10/21/2009 - John will be taking part in the Oct. 28 memorial tribute for former National Collegiate Athletic Association and Indiana University president Myles Brand. The NCAA will host the event in conjunction with IU at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.
Brand, who died from pancreatic cancer on Sept. 16, was the first university president to lead the NCAA as its chief executive. He assumed that post in 2003 following his service as IU president from 1994 through 2002. It was during his IU tenure that he presented John an honorary degree in 2000, when John gave the spring commencement address.
During Brand's tenure John's lead gift helped the university build its indoor football practice facility.
Brand’s distinguished career in academia was capped by his time at IU, where he presided over a period of record student enrollments and national leadership in information technology and the life sciences, while continuing the school’s recognized strengths in the arts and humanities.
< Read More
10/17/2009 - John has been nominated for induction into the prestigious Songwriters Hall
For the second year in a row he’s been named in the Performing songwriter
category, this time along with Bono (Paul Hewson)/The Edge (David Evans)/Adam
Clayton/Larry Mullen (U2), Garth Brooks, Leonard Cohen, Elvis Costello, Dion
DiMucci, David Gates (Bread), Yusuf Islam (formerly Cat Stevens), Tommy James,
Lou Reed, Leon Russell, and Maurice White/Philip Bailey/Verdine White/Larry
Dunn/Al McKay (Earth, Wind and Fire).
Ballots are now being sent to SongHall voting members. They are due back by Dec.
11, with the results to be announced next year.
Incidentally, there is a Non-Performing songwriter category as well. Those
nominees are Tommy Boyce & Bobby Hart, Jackie DeShannon, Luther Dixon, David
Foster, Mark James, Robert John “Mutt” Lange, Johnny Mandel, Jerry Ragovy & Bert
Berns, Harvey Schmidt & Tom Jones, Billy Sherrill, Joe South, and Paul Vance &
Lee P Read More
10/16/2009 - Rolling Stone didn’t provide much coverage of Farm Aid other than a great photo of John and his guitar-slinging son Speck on stage.
John had brought Speck out to jam on his set’s closing “Authority Song,” which ended with a huge sing-along and a deafening crowd roar. John joked afterwards that the now 6 foot tall 14 year old Speck was trying out for the band.
The pic is in the current issue of Stone—dated Oct. 29 and with Madonna on the cover. It's also in the best position on the photo page--top left. Read More
10/15/2009 - The second volume of a specially produced soundtrack for the hit CBS TV series
“NCIS” will feature another cut from John.
“NCIS: The Official TV Soundtrack – Vol. 2,” which CBS Records releases on Nov.
3, includes John’s “Someday The Rains Will Fall.” Like all of the other tracks
(except legendary musical satirist Tom Lehrer’s “The Elements”), it is a new and
previously unreleased recording.
As with the first “NCIS: The Official TV Soundtrack,” which came out in
February, John is in good company. Recent tour mate Bob Dylan is also present
this time around, with Norah Jones, Sheryl Crow and Joss Stone participating
this time as well.
“Someday The Rains Will Fall” was recorded in San Antonio during the sessions
for John’s forthcoming “No Better Than This.” It joins “Troubled Land,” one of
the key tracks from “Life Death Love & Freedom,” which appeared on the first
Now in its seventh season, action drama “NCIS,” which centers on the Read More
10/08/2009 - Written by Amy Burger - Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, St. Louis
The weather gods were smiling on St. Louis Sunday for the Farm Aid benefit
concert, held for the first time in its nearly 25 year history in Missouri at
the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater. The dark clouds and harsh winds of Saturday
blew through giving way to bright sun, mild fall temps and crystal clear blue
skies - the perfect backdrop for a day of music in the heartland.
The fact that Farm Aid has never been held in Missouri is surprising,
considering the vast number of family farms throughout the region. Many of these
family farmers were in attendance, enjoying the sounds, selling organic foods
and educating concert attendees about their cause in the "Homegrown Village."
The regular fare in the amphitheater's concessions was replaced with organic
alternatives (free range chicken tenders) and bright red shirts emblazoned with
"Stop Factory Farms" dotted the landscape.
Farm Aid 2009 hit St. Louis’ Verizon Wireless Ampitheatre yesterday with Dave Matthews, John Mellencamp, Neil Young and Willie Nelson leading a pack of performers that also included Wilco, Jason Mraz and late addition Gretchen Wilson. Local farmers and families packed the venue’s lawn eating locally produced meats and produce and donning shirts that read “Stop Factory Farms” and “Farmers Kick Ass.” The show marks the first Farm Aid for Missouri, and the ninth consecutive year Matthews, Mellencamp, Young, and Nelson, all Farm Aid board members, have headlined the annual concert. Since its inception in 1986, Farm Aid has raised more than $35 million to help support America’s family farmers.
Wilco took the stage at dusk and brought the crowd to its feet with a six-song set that included “Impossible Germany” and “Heavy Metal Drummer” — a song about hanging out in St. Louis’ Laclede’s Landing — and “Casino Queen,” an ode to a local riverboat casino.
Farm Aid finally planted its deep seeds in St. Louis for the first time Sunday, when the big benefit event unfolded all day at a sold-out Verizon Wireless Amphitheater.
It was a long day of messages – just say “no” to factory farming and “yes” to family farming. The point couldn’t be stressed enough it seemed, whether via the interactive Homegrown Village area, the concessions, the PA system on the concourse, and the performers from the stage.
“We want our farms back,” Young said at the top of his set. Later, he said “I hope you’re enjoying Farm Aid. We’d enjoy it more if you’d give us some money.”
But it was the music, not the messages necessarily, that packed the joint, the wall-to-wall rock and country music. And Farm Aid overflowed with it, culminating in headliners Willie Nelson, Neil Young, Dave Matthews, and John Mellencamp, all Farm Aid board members.
Long before getting to those performances, or sets by the likes of Wilco, Gr Read More
10/05/2009 - By Annie Zaleski in Farm Aid, Show ReviewsMon., Oct. 5 2009 @ 1:34PM
John Mellencamp and his crack band may have stolen the show at Farm Aid. The Seymour, Indiana, native opened his nine-song set with slower versions of "Pink Houses" and "Paper in Fire." The youthful intensity Mellencamp exuded when he called himself Johnny Cougar has smoldered into a slower-burning passion, as exemplified in the latter song during the chorus. Multiple members of his band lined up near the front of the stage like a marching-band squad, their voices swelling in a riotous call to arms.
That a communal spirit permeated Mellencamp's songs should be no surprise: Guitarist Mike Wanchic has been a Coug collaborator for thirty-plus years and guitarist Andy York is also a long-term band member. Their versatility was more impressive, however. Mellencamp's nicotine-stained voice cut through "If I Die Sudden," which had a shuffling, Texas honky-tonk feel, while "Troubled La Read More
10/05/2009 - John and his band warmed up a sold-out crowd yesterday with their Farm Aid 2009 set at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater in Maryland Heights, Mo., just outside of St. Louis.
It was a chilly, early Fall evening when they hit the stage around 7:40 Central. But the full moon shone brightly on the pumped-up Farm Aid fans when John lit into “Pink Houses” following an introduction from John’s fellow Farm Aid board member Dave Matthews, whose set with Tim Reynolds preceded John’s. Dave's short but heartfelt introduction included "he has always spoken out for the working man, and I think he is awesome, and I am a big fan of his music." A powerful version of “Paper In Fire” followed, then “Check It Out.”
After thanking his fellow Farm Aid board members (Matthews, Neil Young and Willie Nelson) for their efforts, John did an acoustic solo turn on “Save Some Time to Dream,” the new song from John’s forthcoming album “No Better Than This,” which he performed during the summer tour with Nel Read More