Blues/Folk Beat: Don Henley, Bonnie Raitt, Charlie Patton ...

Henley, Raitt chip in to help Sierra Club; proposed highway may run through Patton's old stomping grounds.

The Sierra Club, faced with a Wednesday (July 19) deadline to raise $250,000 to maintain a judge's order against logging in a 705-acre tract in Northern California's Headwaters forest, got an unexpected boost from former Eagle Don Henley and blueswoman Bonnie Raitt, along with actor James Garner. Henley donated the entire proceeds from a concert Tuesday at the Chronicle Pavilion in Concord, Calif., which provided more than half the money the environmental group was ordered to post by Wednesday to protect Pacific Lumber against losses due to the delay, were they ultimately to prevail in the logging dispute. ...

The Blues Foundation, the group behind the W.C. Handy Awards, is asking for support in its opposition to a highway expansion project that would run through part of the Dockery Farms in Mississippi, where Charlie Patton, among many other notable bluesmen, spent their formative years. The organization says an alternate route would only marginally add to the project's expense and encourages blues fans to express their opposition to Richard Cawthon of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History at rcawthon@mdah.state.ms.us and Donna M. Lumm of the Mississippi Department of Transportation at dlum@mdot.state.ms.us. ...

Emmylou Harris will take her anti-land-mine campaign on the road this winter. Appearing with Harris at stops along the way will be Steve Earle, Bruce Cockburn, John Prine, Nanci Griffith and Mary Chapin Carpenter. The tour kicks off Dec. 2 in Stamford, Conn., and includes dates in Ottawa on Dec. 3, Toronto on Dec. 4, Burlington, Vt., on Dec. 5 and Providence, R.I., on Dec. 6. ...

"Sleepless Nights," a Gram Parsons tribute begun last year, will have its second edition Aug. 12 at San Francisco's Great American Music Hall. Appearing at the benefit for the Joie Armstrong Memorial Scholarship Fund will be: Red Meat, Mover, Convoy, Chuck Prophet, Dave Gleason & the New Originals, the High Deserters, Belyachers, Blue Arrows and Tarnation's Paula Frazer. Former Rolling Stone writer Ben Fong–Torres, who wrote the Parson biography "Hickory Wind," will speak, too. ...

Songs.com and the Grand Ole Opry announce a vote to decide "the mother of country music." The eight nominees for the Oct. 21 show are: Sally Barris; Adie Grey; Janis Ian; Chuck Pyle; Suzi Ragsdale; Jana Stanfield; Kate Wallace and Jack Williams. Votes can be cast at http://songs.com/opryvote/. ... Robert Earl Keen, Charlie Robison and Reckless Kelly will hit the stage for the Northern Rockies Folk Festival held Aug. 4–5 in Hailey, Idaho. ...

Rosanne Cash is working on a book to be called "Songs Without Rhyme," which will contain prose by songwriters including Shawn Colvin, Lyle Lovett, Marc Cohn, Loudon Wainwright, Suzanne Vega, Johnny Cash, and Paula Cole... Guitar legend Eric Clapton will chat with fans on the Internet at 7 p.m. EDT Monday (July 24). Clapton, whose most recent album, Riding With the King with blues legend B.B. King, is one of the biggest selling albums of the summer, will chat for a half-hour on AOL chat (keyword: live). ... The Lowell (Mass.) Folk Festival will be webcast live this year on the Web site of Boston's WGBH (89.7 FM). The three-day, six-stage festival — with performances by Appalachian Trail, Henry Butler and Texas Playboys — will be held at Boarding House Park in Beat writer Jack Kerouac's hometown July 28–30. ...

Songwriter Laurie Lewis and singer Tom Rozum will host two river rafting trips/concerts, "Bluegrass on White Water," Aug. 4–9 and Aug. 30–Sept. 1. The trips will be down Idaho's Salmon River and the Tuolumne River in California, respectively. Check www.echotrips.com for more information. ...

John Lee Hooker has booked an appearance Nov. 4 in Jackson, Calif., at the Jackson Rancheria Casino, according to his management. Health concerns recently have forced the bluesman to cancel dates in Europe. ... Seen in the audience at the Bob Dylan concert Tuesday (July 18) in Toronto: fellow folk legend Gordon Lightfoot. ...

Folk-pop duo the Indigo Girls recently recorded two new tracks — "Leaving" and "Devotion" — for a 16-song compilation called Radio Box: A Retrospective, due Oct. 17, according to Epic Records. Reissues of their first four albums along with new art, liner notes and additional songs will accompany the release. ...

Medeski Martin & Wood, the Ravi Coltrane Quartet and Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown will be among the 48 acts at the Kansas City (Mo.) Blues and Jazz Festival on Friday–Sunday (July 21–23). Fifty thousand people are expected to attend the event, which will have three stages, six musical workshops, a rain tent and a late-night jam session with violinist Claude "Fiddler" Williams and pianist Henry Butler. Other artists performing at the festival include the Fabulous Thunderbirds, the Pat Morrissey Quintet, guitarist Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Lavay Smith & Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers, Spyro Gyra and former Howlin' Wolf guitarist Hubert Sumlin. For more information, check out www.kcbluesjazz.org. ...

If you've got 12 hours to spare, check out broadcast.com's archived webcast of Willie Nelson's Fourth of July Family Picnic. The show featured performances by Willie Nelson & Family, Little Joe Y La Familia, Mustang Sally and the Blame, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Ray Price and more than a dozen other acts. ... Sue Foley will be featured in "Dare To Dream," a photography book celebrating contemporary Canadian female role models. The book will feature 100 women who are considered Canada's pre-eminent female leaders. ... Classic albums by Eric Clapton, Dire Straits and Van Halen will pave the way for a series of releases due this fall from Warner Bros., dubbed Warner Remasters. The series, which will debut on Sept. 19, offers the original artwork and liner notes from the subject albums' vinyl releases, along with the remastered albums themselves. Plans call for hundreds of titles to be released eventually in this format. ...

The Whites, featuring sisters Sharon and Cheryl and their father, Buck, have an album, A Lifetime in the Making, due in stores Aug. 15 on Ceili Music. The acoustic bluegrass album will have a guest vocal appearance by Emmylou Harris on "Fair and Tender Ladies," a song the Whites learned from the Carter Family. The disc also will feature a performance by bluegrass, folk and western swing producer Jerry Douglas. ...

Washburn Guitars is offering 243 Ryman limited edition acoustic guitars. The guitars are made of church pew-styled seats from Nashville's Ryman Auditorium. For more information or to purchase one, call (615) 742-0105. ... Gillian Welch & David Rawlings, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Kevin Welch, Stacey Earle, John Cowan and Judith Edelman are among the many roots artists appearing at Winterhawk Festival from July 28–30 in Hillsdale, N.Y. ...

In Seattle, the lineup for the 30th edition of the far-ranging Bumbershoot Festival, to be held Labor Day weekend (Sept. 1–4) has been announced. Among the performers are: Tracy Chapman, Elliott Smith, Deke Dickerson and the Ecco-Fonics, Iris Dement, John Wesley Harding, Freakwater, Sally Timms, Christy McWilson, Ani DiFranco, Bad Livers, Kelly Joe Phelps, Indigenous, Robbie Fulks, Maceo Parker, Corey Harris and Henry Butler, the Paladins, Elvin Bishop, Ben Harper, Nathan and the Zydeco Cha-Chas, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Joan Osborne, Martin Sexton, Martha Wainwright, Wylie & the Wild West and Kristin Hersh. Advance tickets are on sale, at $12 per day. More information can be found at www.bumbershoot.org. ...

— sonicnet.com staff report