‘Brother’ acts plan odyssey

20-city tour to be launched in January

Contributors to the soundtrack of “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” are taking their show on the road early next year.

In the wake of successful concerts at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium last year and Carnegie Hall in June, a 20-city tour will be launched in January and run through February. A joint production between Immortal Entertainment, United Talent Agency, Metropolitan Entertainment and House of Blues, the show will feature soundtrack contributors Emmylou Harris, Ralph Stanley, Allison Krauss and Union Station, and Norman Blake. Patty Loveless, whose latest album comprises so-called mountain music, will be joining the tour, too.

“We are very pleased to co-present and to help our clients Ethan and Joel Coen and T-Bone Burnett express the creative spirit of their film musically through so many talented artists,” said UTA agent Reza Izad.

The soundtrack to the Coen brothers’ “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” has been a surprise success story, having shipped 2 million copies. It features bluegrass, blues and music from Appalachia, much of it written more than 70 years ago. Disc is the No. 1 country album in the U.S., a spot it has claimed for 15 weeks. A concert recording of the Ryman show, “Down From the Mountain: Live Concert Performances by the Artists & Musicians of O Brother, Where Art Thou?” sold 14,000 copies in the week after its July 24 release.

On the road again

A small tour had been anticipated this year after the organizations that run Carnegie Hall and the Hollywood Bowl expressed an interest in presenting the acts from the soundtrack (Daily Variety, March 29). Those plans were scotched after agreements with the talent couldn’t be reached due to differing touring and recording schedules.

Organizers UTA and Immortal hope the concert is the first in a series of tours bringing together great performers and songs from American musical history.

Cowboy Booking Intl. has the theatrical rights to a documentary, shot by D.A. Pennebaker, Chris Hegedus and Nick Doob, on the making of the soundtrack.

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