Fan Forum for Pure Prairie League


Postby admin » Fri Jul 08, 2011 7:41 pm

Hey prairiedogs,

Here's some info re: the 2011 tour and the band members along with a very brief synopsis of PPL for those who need a refresher course. Not that anyone does, by now all of you and your children and granchildren have hopefully been brought up the right way, the Pure Prairie League way.

There's still plenty of time to catch a PPL show, keep checking the Tour page for additional shows.

I hope the summer is treating you well. Mike Reilly, John David Call, Rick Schell and Donnie Lee Clark are working their prairie tails off to bring you something special, take advantage of it if you can !

All the best,
Tom Sheridan


Saturday 07/16/11 - Superior, WI
Head of the Lakes Fair

Wednesday 07/20/11 - Petoskey, MI
Emmett County Fair

Friday 07/22/11 - Hillsboro,MO

Saturday 07/23/11 - Evanston, IL Space

Thursday 08/04/11 Red Bank, NJ.
Count Basie Theatre w/Poco & Firefall
http://www.countbasietheatre.org/calend ... d=43246959

Saturday 08/06/11 - New York, NY
BB King's

Sunday 08/07/11 - Amagansett, NY
The Stephen Talkhouse 8:00 pm

Friday 08/12/11 - Columbus, OH
Huntington Park Hoe Down ,Columbus, OH
Gates open at 5:00 Chris Logson , Jonalee White, McGuffey Lane, Exile
Pure Prairie League

Saturday 09/03/11 - Whitefish, MT
Depot Park Montana Music Festival

Saturday 09/24/11 - Boulder, CO
Boulder Theater, with Poco

Sunday 09/25/11 - San Diego, CA
Anthology Lounge

Saturday 10/08/11 - Prescott, AZ
Yavapal College with Poco
http://www.yc.edu/v4content/community-e ... hedule.htm

Thursday 11/10/11 Norfolk CT

Friday 11/11/11 Bethel NY
Bethel Woods Center for the Arts

Saturday 11/12/11 Old Saybrook CT
Katharine Hepburn center for the arts


Pure Prairie League is not only one of the earliest bands in the history of country rock, it is one of it’s most successful, influential and critically acclaimed. Inspired by various folk and rock acts, most notably The Byrds and The Beatles, PPL formed in Waverly , Ohio in 1969. The pioneering band boasts numerous critically acclaimed releases from the 70’s and 80’s, which many have praised as the greatest country rock ever recorded. The self titled debut LP, Bustin’ Out, Two Lane Highway, Live ! Takin’ The Stage, Firin’ Up and the most recent, All In Good Time, are among the PPL releases hailed as classics by critics and why fans today are still clamoring for more.

The band rose to the top of the country rock world in the 70’s and stayed there into the 80’s accomplishing what no other country rock band did: 5 consecutive releases in the 70’s and another in the 80’s that hit Top 40 LP charts. Credited with advancing the country rock genre into the national music mainstream, PPL was the first of the genre to hit Billboard’s Country Top 40 charts, merging rock and roll and country music. While The Eagles turned to a decidely more rock oriented approach, it was Pure Prairie League who ignited the country rock torch and kept it burning brightly as the music scene changed abruptly in the mid 70’s. The trail of success which PPL blazed widened the road for their country rock contemporaries as the spark lit by PPL kept the genre alive and provided a path for others to follow.

The legacy of PPL and it’s influence on both it’s peers and future recording artists is extraordinary. It’s music appears on well over 100 CD compilations, a true testament to both the level of excitement and respect the band generated. Cited as influential by Garth Brooks, Toby Keith, Montgomery Gentry, Lonestar, Ricky Skaggs, Travis Tritt, Dolly Parton , Keith Urban, Patty Loveless, Counting Crows, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, former member and Country Music Hall of Fame superstar Vince Gill and numerous others who have played and recorded their work, PPL continues to forge ahead. Not content to rest on their laurels, the band added their most recent release in 2005, All In Good Time, hailed by Goldmine Magazine as “ an unlikely but potent candidate for CD of the year.” Heady praise, yet it’s come to be expected from PPL. Obviously PPL is far more than nostalgia, it is still a force to be reckoned with 42 years since it’s inception.

Today’s PPL boasts a lineup that rivals it’s storied past. Founding member and pedal steel sensation John David Call is back, thrilling fans with his pioneering style that earned him the reputation as one of the greatest and most influential pedal steel players of all time. Mike Reilly, who joined during PPL’s 2nd LP and has been there ever since, is at the helm on bass and vocals , igniting the crowd much like he’s done for decades, directing PPL around the country. Rounding out the band are drummer, vocalist Rick Schell, in his 10th year with PPL and guitarist, vocalist Donnie Lee Clark, now in his 6th year with the band. Founding member Craig Fuller has toured with the band full time for several years and still appears on occasion, while George Ed Powell, another founding member, has also checked in on occasion. The band presents a powerful lineup, one which has proven to be a major force even in today’s scene, selling out venues all over the country.

A PPL show will showcase some new tunes as well as bring back many of the songs which took PPL to the top of country rock world. The immortal Amie, Tears, Two Lane Highway, Let Me Love You Tonight, Kansas City Southern , Pickin’ To Beat The Devil, I’m Almost Ready, I’ll Be Damned and Woman are just a few of the classics which liven up a PPL show. This is a band not to be missed. It’s country rock at it’s best - it’s Pure Prairie League.

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Postby Matt » Mon Jul 11, 2011 8:46 pm

Hi Tom,


:D :lol:
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Postby oilman55 » Wed Sep 07, 2011 5:57 am


The current line-up is great, no doubt about it, but I guess I am a purist in this respect: if Craig isn't there, it really isn't PPL, nor would it be if Mike wasn't there. Having JDC there helps, A LOT, but....

Here's hoping Craig will show up more often than not.

A fan since the early '70's,
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Postby Tom » Wed Sep 07, 2011 7:34 am

Hi Steve,

Nice to hear from you again, hope all is well.

Certainly I understand any sentiment re: Craig and his music. He's great one , no doubt. But Craig has opted not to continue at this point and fortunately for PPL and country rock fans the band has moved on and continues to do quite well. That is no surprise to anyone who knows PPL and it's history or has seen them in concert recently.

As for the notion that it isn't PPL w/o Craig, well, that to me seems to be quite drastic, to say the least, not to mention an unwarranted slight to guys like Mike, a member since the 2nd LP, John, a founding member who established their sound as much as Craig, Rick, who has been with them for over 10 years and Donnie who is now in his 6th year. I don't think you will find too many country rock or southern rock acts out there today who have this continuity in their lineup. These guys are enormous talents and carry on the PPL tradition as well as any of those lineups before them. John Call and Mike Reilly have far too much pride in the legacy to continue on with PPL if they didn't feel that way. It's not PPL ? Well, yes it is, and the sold out shows since Craig left and the venues who already booked them again for next year after these shows seem to agree.

For the past 6 years or so,with Craig in the lineup in concerts, the band's setlist has included Two Lane Highway, KC Southern, Pickin' To Beat The Devil, I'll Be Damned, Let Me Love You Tonight, Misery Train, I'm Almost Ready, Lucille Crawfield, Flat Tire Merle, Kentucky Moonshine and a few others. Every single one of these tunes have been met with as much or more enthusiasm by fans as did Tears or Early Morning Riser and with good reason: they were all played on a regular basis in the 70's and 80's at PPL concerts when the band was on top of the country rock world. Craig did not write any of them, Craig did not perform on any of them on the respective PPL releases. He only appeared on only 3 of the 11 PPL releases(not including Mementos). Obviously PPL is far more than just Craig.In fact, I believe most PPL fans are aware that the band came into prominence after Craig left. "Purists" sometimes need to be reminded that Craig's music only came to light after he left and PPL released a string of critically and commercially successful LP's. I can understand anyone who prefers his work, but not at the expense of writing off everything the band accomplished after he left. That , to me, is taking the matter way too far.

PPL had many releases without Craig that were hailed as classics. Live ! Takin' the Stage ! is hailed as one of the greatest live releases. That LP represents PPL as much as anything they ever did and it certainly gives a snapshot look at the songs that propelled PPL to the top. Of the 20 or so songs on it, it contains only one tune from Craig, Amie. The band had 5 top 40 LP's without Craig, including their two highest charting LP's. When fans attend a concert they rightfully expect to hear many of these songs and they do. Craig himself was well aware of it. Now the band can expand their set and bring more of these songs to the fans. They have the flexibility to do it, and if that means dropping a few Little Feat tunes from the show, well it is a PPL concert after all ! I miss Craig as much as anyone. I've had the pleasure of seeing him perform in every decade from the 70's through today . However I do know what PPL is all about and the majority of PPL fans do too.

The overwhelming majority of fans who saw PPL in concert in the 70's and 80's never saw Craig. Fans today expect to hear what they saw back then and they are still getting it.I remember when Craig first left in 1973. " PPL is done" claimed misguided critics. RCA made the same erroneous claim "it isn't PPL without Craig". The purists at RCA were forced to sign them to a new contract, Two Lane Highway was released and suddenly RCA, critics and a few die hard fans were eating their words and hailing the LP as one of the greatest in country rock. PPL was still PPL without Craig then and they still are today.

The same thing happened just before Vince Gill arrived. The next thing you knew PPL was in the top ten,still playing 250 shows a year, appearing on numerous TV shows, still a major force. Obviously there was still some great music being made by PPL . That music is still being played today by a lineup loaded with talent.

Perhaps Craig will still play a few shows, it's always a treat , time will tell. But for now he's content to stop touring and good for him. George Powell just popped in at Ohio and he may play a few more this year, I certainly hope so.

All the best,
"I have seen the future of country music and it's name is Pure Prairie League."
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Postby oilman55 » Wed Sep 07, 2011 8:20 am

Well I guess I pushed a button with that post, eh? :)

Fair enough, and I have to admit what you say makes a lot of sense. I certainly wasn't trying to suggest that the Mike, John, Rick, Donnie, George, the Goshorns, and Vince weren't just as much as part of who PPL was (and is). Every "generation" of of PPL has been awesome in its own right and has produced fabulous music - I agree with you totally on that. Maybe my problem is that I am a HUGE fan of each of the members of PPL over all of the years, particularly Craig, and will simply miss having him there in the (possibly) last few years that they will be touring.

So, I'll retract my statement that PPL without Craig really isn't PPL; that was incorrect. It clearly IS still PPL; just missing a very important element (like the period when Mike or John was out of the line-up due to health issues).

Thanks for all you do - I appreciate it very much!!
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Postby Dan Williams III » Wed Sep 07, 2011 6:06 pm

You will not find a more dedicated Craig Fuller fan than I. I have made several posts over the years regarding that. However, I saw PPL perform at the Count Basie Theatre last month and I was pleasantly surprised to witness that they have never sounded better. I am not suggesting that they are better off without Craig, since that might sound somewhat sacrilegious. But I will say that Donnie Lee sings Craig's songs like they were his own. Donnie's energy, talent and enthusiasm have made their live performances even better. The band has never been tighter and their vocal blend is chill-inducing. And having John Call back is the icing on the cake. Still, I would love to see Craig do some solo concerts...I would travel far for that. Just one more thing...long live Pure Prairie League!!!
Clutch Cargo prefers spinners.
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Postby PrairieDogMick » Wed Nov 09, 2011 11:41 pm

If memory serves me right, PPL sold thousands of albums down in DEEP south,,,, any chance of PPL coming our way, especially through Louisiana? And how come you guys aren't on CMT or GAC? You'd be perfect.
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Postby RedRiverPatrol » Mon Nov 14, 2011 7:24 pm

As I said to Mike, John David, and Donnie Lee the morning after the Prescott date, "We missed Craig, but we didn't MISS Craig. No disrespect intended."

I also told Donnie that he sings the Vince Gill songs better than Vince Gill. I really enjoyed hearing "I'm Almost Ready " live!

You are only young once, but you CAN be immature forever.
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