Blues/Folk Beat: Dave Alvin, Susan Tedeschi, Steve Earle ...

HighTone to release new album of old Alvin; guitarists to play festivals.

Dave Alvin will have a new album of old material out Aug. 15 on the HighTone label. Public Domain: Songs From the Wild Land features old favorites such as "Shenandoah," "Railroad Bill," "The Murder of the Lawson Family" (once recorded by Doc and Merle Watson as "Lawson Family Murder"), Blind Willie McTell's "Mama Ain't Long for Day," "Don't Let Your Deal Go Down," "What Did the Deep Sea Say" (once recorded by Woody Guthrie) and "East Virginia Blues" (previously recorded by Alvin as a duet with Ramblin' Jack Elliott on the latter's most recent album, The Long Ride). "Ninety percent of the songs are from 78s I heard as a kid," Alvin said. ...

As a warm-up to the Telluride Bluegrass Festival, June 15–18, several artists scheduled to play there — including blues guitarist Susan Tedeschi, Bruce Hornsby, Béla Fleck and the Flecktones, Jackson Browne and the Bluegrass Sessions (Béla Fleck, Sam Bush and Jerry Douglas) will hit the stage Tuesday (June 13) at the Red Rocks Amphitheater near Denver for a pre-festival concert. General admission tickets start at $37.50. ...

Steve Earle and a host of artists from a variety of genres, including Richard Thompson, Aimee Mann and Michael Penn, Ben Folds Five, Sonic Youth and Patti Smith, will participate in the Digital Club Festival July 22–25. Touted as the world's largest online music event, 30 venues in more than two dozen cities, featuring more than 200 artists, are scheduled to participate. The Digital Club Network will broadcast their sets live in streaming video; some will be rebroadcast. ...

Jerry Jeff Walker, Marcia Ball, Kinky Friedman, Damnations TX, and the Gourds will play a benefit Sunday (June 11), in Austin, Texas, at the Zona Rosa club's Soul of the City concert. The event is a fund-raiser for the SOS (Soul of Our City) Alliance, and commemorates the 10-year anniversary of the formation of a coalition of Austin residents. The coalition convinced the City Council not to approve a project that would have built over Barton Springs, a natural spring — long considered the heart and soul of the city — near downtown. This began an environmental movement that over the last decade has resulted in the city's passing some of the most stringent environmental legislation in the country. ...

Acoustic bluesman Taj Mahal's next album, Shoutin' in Key, recorded live with his Phantom Blues Band at the Mint in Los Angeles, will be out June 20 on the Kan-Du/Hannibal label. He's got a string of West Coast dates scheduled to coincide with the album's release, including a show at L.A.'s House of Blues on June 21 and an appearance at the Experience Music Project opening in Seattle on June 24. ...

The upcoming Appleseed album The Songs of Pete Seeger Volume II, besides featuring Joan Baez and Jackson Browne on a duet of "Guantanamera," also will feature Pete Seeger and Arlo Guthrie singing "66 Highway Blues," a song Seeger wrote with Arlo's dad, Woody Guthrie, which has never been recorded. Other artists on the album include Billy Bragg, Tom Paxton and Eric Anderson. ...

Former Pentangle guitarist Bert Jansch will have some illustrious help on his upcoming album, Crimson Moon, due June 26 on Castle Records. Jansch, 56, who has been cited by the likes of Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page and Neil Young as a favorite of theirs, is joined by former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr and former Suede guitarist Bernard Butler on the track "The River Bank," which also features Marr singing and playing harmonica. ...

Willie Nelson's Fourth of July Picnic, now moved from Dripping Springs, Texas, to south Austin, has signed these artists for the date: Damnations TX, Larry Butler, Cadillac Voodoo Choir, Bobby Boyd, Patsy Thompson, Ray Price, Kimmie Rhodes, Steve Fromholz, Rusty Weir, Johnny Bush, Lil Joe & Son, Pat Green, Cory Morrow, the Geezinslaws, Billy Joe Shaver, Aaron Allen and Doc Mason & Ava, Susan Tedeschi, Ray Wylie Hubbard and Jimmie Dale Gilmore. Further signings are expected. ... Nelson is releasing a new, enhanced CD, Willie Nelson and the Offenders: Me and the Drummer, on the Luck Label. ...

Baez, Odetta, Judy Collins and Seeger are only some of the artists appearing on Roger McGuinn's upcoming release on Appleseed records, Roger McGuinn — Treasures From the Folk Den. The album evolved from McGuinn's song postings on his Folk Den Web page over the last few years. ... Boston folksinger Barbara Kessler is putting together an album to benefit Boston-area homeless shelters titled CD Hope: Mothers Helping Mothers. Among the contributors she's lined up are Suzzy Roche, Sara Hickman, Julie and Buddy Miller and Tish Hinojosa. ...

Mandolin player, guitarist, banjo player and singer Dan Tyminski has an album coming out June 20 on Doobie Shea, Carry Me Across the Mountain. The longtime member of the Lonesome River Band and then Alison Krauss' Union Station's first solo album will include guest appearances from fellow Union Station members, plus Tony Rice, banjo player Jim Mills, Aubrey Haynie, Ronnie Bowman of Lonesome River and a few others. ... Suzanne Vega also has a new record in the works, she announced at a show recently. ...

The High Sierra Music Fest, celebrating its 10th anniversary June 30–July 3 at the Quincy, Calif., Plumas County Fairgrounds, has a bang-up lineup of blues, folk, bluegrass and roots-rock musicians, including Los Lobos, Sam Bush, Hugh Masekela, Dr. John, the Radiators and former Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna picker Jorma Kaukonen. Check it out at www.hsmusic.net. ...

Blues pianist Pinetop Perkins, along with Arhoolie Records founder Chris Strachwitz and gospel quartet the Dixie Hummingbirds have been named recipients of 2000 National Heritage Fellowships. The fellowships, bestowed by the National Endowment for the Arts, are the nation's top honor for artists. ...

Folksinger Ramblin' Jack Elliott will serenade the audience before the screening of his daughter's documentary "The Ballad of Ramblin' Jack Elliott," June 10 at the Nashville Independent Film Festival. ... Rhino Records is set to release three new installments of its Blues Masters series. An anthology of guitar great T-Bone Walker is due June 20 and will be followed by collections on Lightnin' Hopkins and Freddy King on Aug. 15. ...

On the evenings of June 10 and 11, following the day's festivities at the free Chicago Blues Festival, a rare conglomeration of blues legends will join to form what might be called the "Mississippi Social Club." On June 10, three of the remaining living musicians who played with the legendary Johnson will assemble at 10 p.m. at the Hothouse on East Balbo St. These spring chickens will include 91-year-old guitarist Homesick James, 90-year-old guitarist and piano player Henry Townsend and 84-year-old guitarist David "Honeyboy" Edwards. They'll be joined by acoustic blues musicians Stew Moss and Jon McDonald. The following night, harmonica masters including Billy Boy Arnold, Sugar Blue, Little Mack Simmons and Willie "Big Eyes" Smith take the stage. For tickets or more information, call (312) 362-9707.

— sonicnet.com staff report