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The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: Picking on the Patio

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: Picking on the Patio

The final Warner Bros. Nashville “Picking on the Patio” concert for 2016 proved a huge treat for attendees. The legendary Nitty Gritty Dirt Band performed a dynamic set amid the threat of rain that included many of their best-loved tunes like “You Ain't Going Nowhere,” “Workin' Man (Nowhere to Go)” and, of course, “Mr. Bojangles.”

The award-winning band, now comprised of Jeff Hanna, Bob Carpenter, John McEuen and Jimmie Fadden, is celebrating its 50th year of making music with a commemorative tour and a new CD/DVD package, Circlin' Back: Celebrating 50 Years, set for release on Sept. 30. The album was filmed and recorded at a special concert at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville and features guest appearances from Vince Gill, Alison Krauss, “Mr. Bojangles” composer Jerry Jeff Walker and others.

Dirt Band keyboardist/vocalist Bob Carpenter spoke with us about the group's longevity and future plans prior to the Patio show. Is an overseas tour in the works? As of right now, there is no timetable for touring overseas but that isn't exactly written in concrete.

We never know from year to year,” Carpenter said. “We don't have a five year plan, especially at this point in our careers, where we're all in our 60's and 70's. Going overseas takes a lot of time and you need to have extended tours if we're going to do it. So that remains to be seen, but we certainly haven't ruled it out.”

The band members show no signs of slowing down or abandoning touring altogether. They still love performing as much as ever, Carpenter assured. “We will always be playing shows,” he said. “I can't foresee a day where we won't go out and play live shows. There's nothing more fun for us than playing for an audience. That's the reason I think we have stayed together for so long.”

By Bob Paxman for Country Music News International

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