The Mateel Community Center in Redway will be starting out the new year with a bang on Friday, Jan. 4 presenting an intimate evening with musical legend Steve Earle with main floor seating and mezzanine standing room only tickets. Tickets are on sale now at mateel.org and at the usual outlets and are expected to go fast.

Earle who grew up outside of San Antonio, in Schertz, Texas, received his first guitar at 11 and at the age of 19 left Schertz for Nashville where he started doing back-up vocals and guitar in bar bands and working odd jobs to support himself. There he met and became a protégé of the legendary songwriter, Townes Van Sandt who inspired him to make music his career. Through Van Sandt, he met song writer/performer, Guy Clark and sang back-up vocals along with Emmylou Harris on for Clark’s 1975 album, Old No.1. Earle toured with Clark for the next two years and also had bit parts in a couple movies made in Nashville including Robert Altman’s Nashville.

Commercial success as a song writer followed Earle with songs he wrote for Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris, Waylon Jennings, The Pretenders, Joan Baez, Travis Tritt and countless others. It wasn’t until 1986, with the release of his first album, “Guitar Town” which garnered glowing reviews and commercial success, that Earle became known for his performing as well. With Guitar Town he received his first two Grammy nominations for Best Country Male Vocalist and Best Country Song and was also named 1986’s Country Artist of the Year in Rolling Stone Magazine’s critics poll. Since then, he’s had seven Grammy nominations, and awards too numerous to mention for his songwriting and performing career which was interrupted at times due to a long-standing drug problem which caused his label, MCA to drop him in 1991. He served a brief stint in prison in the early 90’s before successfully completing a rehab program and getting paroled in 1994. From the biting hard rock of Copperwood Road (1988) to the minimalist beauty of Train a Comin’ to the politically charged masterpiece, Jerusalem (2002), Earle’s artistry cannot be suppressed. Some of the songs he’ll perform will be from his Grammy award winning albums, The Revolution Starts Now, (2004); Washington Square Serenade, (2007) and Townes (2009). His latest album, I’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive (2011) is Earle’s 14th studio album and shares the same name with his 2011 debut novel. Of the novel, Patti Smith stated, “Steve Earle brings to his prose the same authenticity, poetic spirit and cinematic energy he projects in his music. I’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive is like a dream you can’t shake, offering beauty and remorse, redemption in spades.”

There will be two types of general admission tickets for An Evening with Steve Earle: the $50 tickets for main floor seating and the $35 tickets for standing room only space in the upstairs mezzanine. Only 200 of each type of ticket will be sold. All attendees, including children, must have a ticket. Tickets are on sale now online at www.mateel.org and at the usual local outlets. For more information call the Mateel office at 923-3368.

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Legendary musician Steve Earle will be at the Mateel Community Center in Redway on Jan. 4.