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12/19/2008 - Buffalo News writer Jeff Miers praises John’s most recent album on his year end list:

John Mellencamp, “Life Death Love & Freedom” (Hear Music): Mellencamp is at his best when fueled by righteous anger. Here, the sympathetic production afforded by T-Bone Burnett helps to craft an instant classic.
Click HERE to read this article online. Read More
12/18/2008 - The restless voice of ornery America, John Mellencamp has spent three decades railing against injustice and conservatism. Now, on the eve of the US election, MOJO find him contemplating his own mortality on the set of Elvis Costello’s new TV show…

Words: Phil Sutcliffe, Portrait: Elaine Mellencamp
This article includes some great photos and should be available at select bookstores and newsstands that sell import magazines.

“Do you know what’s been happening today?” John Mellencamp enquires, responding briskly to a broad opening question about his “left-wing Democrat” politics. Well, it’s September 15 in New York City and, thus far, leading investments bank Lehman Bros has gone bankrupt, the Bank of Americas has rescued broke stockbroker Merrill Lynch, and American’s largest insurance company, AIG has announced it needs $80 billion pronto or it’s going to belly-up.

Assured that MOJO’s got the gist, Mellencamp proceeds with his smoke break cum photo ses Read More
12/13/2008 - A&E's Bio Channel has posted three outtake clips on their website from the recently premiered "Homeward Bound: John Mellencamp" documentary. The clips include John’s reflections on the first incarnation of the Johnny Cougar band, his worst gig ever, and his painting process and its application to music. Click HERE to view the clips on Bio.com.
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12/13/2008 - During his October trip to the U.K. to receive Q Magazine’s prestigious “Classic Songwriter” award, John met with BBC Radio 2’s legendary DJ Johnny Walker. Besides an in-depth interview involving the making Life, Death, Love & Freedom, John performs solo acoustic versions of “Longest Days” and “Minutes To Memories.”
Click HERE for the BBC Radio 2 site to listen to the segment online.

Click HERE for the BBC iPlayer Radio Console to listen online.
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12/12/2008 - John Mellencamp has completed his whirlwind month-long tour of Australia and New Zealand, and by all accounts it was a triumph. As a reviewer for The West Australian wrote of the tour-opening Nov. 15 “Evening on the Green” show at the Sandalford Winery in Caversham, “It would be easy to see John Mellencamp’s set simply as a collection of great songs. Here was a chance to apply metaphor to a body of work which still after all these years is pointedly relevant. But first, it was time to party a bit.”

Playing to as many as 10,000-plus fans each night, Mellencamp did indeed party down, to approximately 100,000 fans from the Sandalford show through the Dec. 7 tour finale at the Mudhouse Winery in Christchurch, New Zealand. The 12-show tour stops were in places Mellencamp had not visited in over 15 years—one reason, perhaps, as to why he was so talkative during the shows (especially regarding outgoing President Bush).

Tour highlights included his nightly performance of “I Need a Lover,” the so Read More
12/11/2008 - By Mike Leonard

Rock star and Bloomington resident John Mellencamp performs at the Crump Theater in Columbus in this still from tonight’s 90-minute documentary special “Homeward Bound: John Mellencamp,” airing on the Biography channel.

John Mellencamp has never enjoyed spending much time talking about how he got saddled with the stage name of Johnny Cougar.

It was an embarrassing and infuriating marketing decision made by his manager at the time and enforced with the threat of “no name change, no record.”

For years, the moniker was more like an anchor around the neck of the 57-year-old Seymour native and longtime Bloomington resident. Few fans or critics were willing to take seriously a cat named Cougar, or even the artist formerly known as.

“Are we through talking about this now?” Mellencamp asks on camera during the new 90-minute documentary, “Homeward Bound: John Mellencamp,” which premieres at 9 tonight on the Biography channel Read More
12/10/2008 - Rolling Stone magazine’s new year-end double-issue cites “Life, Death, Love & Freedom” as the #5 album of 2008.

The December 25th issue, which features Brad Pitt on the cover, places the critically acclaimed John Mellencamp album just behind My Morning Jacket’s “Evil Urges.” The top three spots are taken by TV on the Radio’s “Dear Science,” Bob Dylan’s “The Bootleg Series, Vol. 8: Tell Tale Signs - Rare and Unreleased 1989-2006” and Lil Wayne’s “Tha Carter III.”

“John Mellencamp’s growling fatalism and T Bone Burnett’s scorched-blues production make this the darkest, most compelling Mellencamp album in years,” said Rolling Stone in the blurb accompanying its prestigious 50 Best Albums of 2008 listing. “It is also the perfect run-up to Election Day: Fourteen songs about a nation going broke and a generation on the ropes.”

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12/10/2008 - John Mellencamp’s music, A&E’s Biography (BIO) Channel rightly declares, “defined a generation.” Its new “Homeward Bound: John Mellencamp” documentary special, debuting Thursday, December 11th, shows how Mellencamp’s music developed out of his Indiana roots.

The 90-minute program visits Mellencamp’s hometown of Seymour and meets with the people who inspired his music and covers early career high—and low—points. The special features archival footage, personal photos, and interviews with childhood friends, band members, and other key people in his life. Bonus concert performances of several songs, including cuts from John's new album “Life, Death, Love & Freedom” are included.

According to Producer Anthony Uro, the documentary “really gives viewers an in-depth look at the John Mellencamp most people don’t see, because it’s not only about John, the successful rock star, it also paints a very detailed picture of John’s early life and career before he was famous, and the people, place Read More
12/09/2008 - As noted, the 90-minute program visits Mellencamp’s hometown of Seymour and meets with the people who inspired his music and covers early career high—and low—points. The special features archival footage, personal photos, and interviews with childhood friends, band members, and other key people in his life. Bonus concert performances of several songs, including cuts from John's new album “Life, Death, Love & Freedom” are included.

According to Producer Anthony Uro, the documentary “really gives viewers an in-depth look at the John Mellencamp most people don’t see, because it’s not only about John, the successful rock star, it also paints a very detailed picture of John’s early life and career before he was famous, and the people, places, and events that shaped him as a person and as an artist.”

While the special ends with Mellencamp’s extensively-covered intimate concert at the Crump Theater in Columbus, Indiana, Uro is most excited about Mellencamp’s commentary in “Homeward Bound,” Read More
12/09/2008 - By JANUARY WETZEL

He was born in a small town, and on Thursday, he will return to his Seymour roots through the Stage 3 Productions documentary "Homeward Bound: John Mellencamp."

Airing at 9 p.m. on the BIO network, channel 115 on Comcast, channel 226 on DirectTV and channel 222 on Cinergy MetroNet, the 90-minute special features an intimate look at the rock-and-roll star's life and career.

It ranges from his early days playing in local garage bands and getting rejected by every record label to making his first album, "The Chestnut Street Incident," to being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Through archival footage, personal photos and first-hand commentary from Mellencamp, childhood friends, band members and other people influential in his life and career, viewers will learn more about the man behind the music.

As part of the show, viewers also get a front-row seat to Mellencamp's special Sept. 23 concert at the histo Read More
12/08/2008 - John Mellencamp, Sheryl Crow, Shane Nicholson - BRISBANE ENTERTAINMENT CENTRE 25.11.08
By Ben Preece

As a diverse and eclectic array of fans – a cross-section of all age groups and demographics – edge into their seats tonight they’re treated to the sounds of Shane Nicholson, who seems to be having quite a good, albeit incredibly early set. He moves through a steady bunch of songs that are predominantly drawn from his latest album Familiar ghosts and seems to win over a few new fans in the process.

Right from the word go Sheryl Crow doesn’t muck around. Leaping straight into her debut hit single. ‘All I Wanna Do’ the singer delivers hit after hit for a solid hour of Crow power. All the hits are here – ‘Strong Enough’, ‘My Favourite Mistake’, ‘If It Makes You Happy’, ‘Everyday Is A Winding Road’ – making it impossible for you to leave unsatisfied. Crow’s voice is incredible, filling the arena effortlessly while her catalogue more than stand the test Read More
12/08/2008 - John Mellencamp / Sheryl Crow / Shane Nicholson – BEC - Tue Nov 25
By Denis Semchenko

Boondall is a pain to get to but tonight’s double serve of heartland rock is totally worth crossing the Gateway Bridge and overpriced parking. Shane Nicholson’s early slot means I miss him, taking my seat to the shuffle of Sheryl Crow’s first smash All I Wanna Do. Back by super-tight eight –piece band, the ‘90s FM diva turns in a stellar performance, playing (nearly) all the hits and revisiting Cat Stevens’ First Cut Is The Deepest and Crowded House’s Mean To Me. Sheryl’s pipes are in great nick – Strong Enough and If It Makes You Happy are sublime – and the 10,000-strong crowd roars its approval.

Greeted by deafening cheers, John Mellencamp commands the packed BEC the moment he walks on. The US rock legend is still the consummate storyteller, pumping out ‘80s hits Pink Houses, Rock In The U.S.A, My Sweet Love [duet with Sheryl Crow) and Crumblin’ Down alo Read More
12/08/2008 - John Mellencamp was the featured guest on National Public Radio’s “World Cafe” on Tuesday, Nov. 11th. “World Cafe” is scheduled to repeat John's visit on Saturday December 13 and Monday, December 15, 2008.

The nearly half-hour visit features an in-depth interview, along with solo acoustic performances of "Longest Days," "Small Town," "A Ride Back Home," and "Troubled Land". Click HERE to listen to John's entire visit and performance online!

Produced in Philadelphia by the University of Pennsylvania’s public radio service WXPN, and distributed nationally by National Public Radio (NPR), “World Cafe” can be heard on almost 200 local stations nationwide. Fans can find their local station by clicking HERE and choosing Read More
12/06/2008 - John Mellencamp’s version of the Christmas chestnut “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” has been cited by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) in its annual Top 25 list of most performed holiday songs for the past five years.

The list, which is topped for the second time by “Winter Wonderland,” includes songwriter credits and notes the most popular artist version played on radio.

“I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” came in at No. 21. Written by Tommie Connor, it was a No. 1 hit originally for Jimmy Boyd in 1952 and has been memorably covered also by the likes of the Ronnettes (on Phil Spector’s classic Christmas album) and the Jackson Five.

Mellencamp’s version was part of the 1987's “A Very Special Christmas” album compilation. It was cut with his Lonesome Jubilee band and was accompanied by a video featuring his then very young daughter Teddi Jo singing.

ASCAP, by the way, is the leading U.S. Performing Rights Organization representing ov Read More
12/06/2008 - “If you are a Mellencamp fan, don’t rely on dropping hints for Christmas presents go buy it for yourself. It will be the best musical investment you have made in years."

Life Death Love & Freedom - Article By: Henrie Geyser

Not all good things take time. John Mellencamp spent just 12 months recording what is probably his best ever album.

If you thought his 2007 effort 'Freedom Road' was great, wait until you hear him on 'Life Death Love and Freedom' — the man and his music are simply brilliant.

For most of the songs he has taken a few steps back in time to good old roots rock ‘n roll which is a perfect match for his raspy, drawling style.

But don’t expect pounding, blaring, jiving rock. This is bluesy country stuff — honest, sad, even dark and sombre at times and superbly set against the background of acoustic guitar, the likes of which I have not heard in years.

Mellencamp is an accomplished songwriter and musi Read More
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