John Mellencamp to Embark on Summer “Sad Clowns & Hillbillies Tour”


Tickets On-Sale Friday, February 24


New York, NY (February 16, 2017) – Following the seventh and final installment of his hugely-successful Plain Spoken Tour, JOHN MELLENCAMP will set out once again this Summer for 22 stops across North America for his all-new SAD CLOWNS & HILLBILLIES TOUR. Kicking off on June 5th in Denver, Colorado, the tour will continue throughout the United States with stops at the historic Greek Theatre in Los Angeles before concluding in Queens, NY at Forest Hills Stadium. Mellencamp will be joined by special guest and 13-time GRAMMY-Award-winning singer-songwriter Emmylou Harris as well as his Plain Spoken tour mate Carlene Carter and folk-pop sister duo Lily & Madeleine. Multiplatinum-selling recording artist Jewel will also step in for the tour’s two Oregon dates, substituting for Emmylou Harris as the special guest opener.

Tickets for the tour will be available to the general public beginning Friday, February 24th at 10:00am. and VIP pre-sale tickets will be available beginning Wednesday, February 22nd at 10:00am until Thursday, February 23rd at 10:00pm. For more information and all ticketing information please visit and

Every online ticket purchased comes with one (1) physical CD of John Mellencamp’s forthcoming album, “Sad Clowns & Hillbillies.” John’s 23rd full-length album, featuring Carlene Carter returns Mellencamp to the musical eclecticism that is, itself, a reflection of his wide-ranging musings on life. Sad Clowns & Hillbillies showcases a poet who has wisely used the years between youth and the present day to become an absolute master of songwriting and interpretation. That passion and experience resonates most beautifully in this showcase of his music. “Sad Clowns & Hillbillies” is set for release on April 21, 2017 from Republic Records.

Described by the Hollywood Reporter as a “triumphant, career-spanning show” and hailed as a “superb performance…still full of fiery defiance” by the Boston Globe, the two-year run of John Mellencamp’s Plain Spoken Tour further solidified the Rock and Roll Hall-of-Famer’s place at the forefront of American music for the past 40 years. The tour has received a massive amount of support from press around the nation, with AXS concluding Mellencamp “puts on one of the most electrifying rock shows in the business,” and the Louisville Courier Journal highlighting his progression as a performer, noting, “he’s always been a consummate showman — but there was an underlying richness to his set that was far more impressive.” The Fort Worth Star Telegram describes the audience’s reaction to the show, writing, “the near-capacity crowd roared its approval — they were shouting back the lyrics with the gusto of a bloodthirsty mob”.


“Like a well-worn leather jacket from those days outside the Cherry Bomb, Mellencamp’s music felt AS TIMELESS AS IT DID NOSTALGIC Monday night at the Weidner Center in Green Bay before what was essentially a sold-out crowd.” – GREEN BAY PRESS-GAZETTE

“Friday night at a sold-out Louisville Palace, the 63-year-old Mellencamp had his share of fun — he’s always been a CONSUMMATE SHOWMAN — but there was an underlying richness to his set that was FAR MORE IMPRESSIVE.” – THE COURIER-JOURNAL

“If you mixed a PREACHER, a PUNCH PRESS OPERATOR and an OLD BLUESMAN together in the back of a cement mixer, John Mellencamp would come out in the pour.” – DULUTH NEWS-TRIBUNE

All dates below feature special guest Emmylou Harris, Carlene Carter and Lily & Madeleine unless otherwise noted.

Mon, June 5 Denver, CO Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Wed, June 7 Boise, ID Outlaw Field at the Idaho Botanical Garden Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Thurs, June 8 Redmond, WA Marymoor Park Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Sat, June 10** Troutdale, OR** McMenamins Edgefield** Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am**
Sun, June 11** Bend, OR** Les Schwab Amphitheater** Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am**
Tue, June 13 Saratoga, CA The Mountain Winery TBD
Wed, June 14 Saratoga, CA The Mountain Winery TBD
Sat, June 17 Murphys, CA Ironstone Amphitheatre Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Sun, June 18 Los Angeles, CA Greek Theatre Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Wed, June 21 Grand Prairie, TX Verizon Theatre Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Thurs, June 22 Sugar Land, TX Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Sat, June 24 St. Augustine, FL St. Augustine Amphitheatre Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Sun, June 25 Boca Raton, FL Mizner Park Amphitheater Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Tue, June 27 Atlanta, GA Chastain Park Amphitheatre TBD
Wed, June 28 Cary, NC Cary’s Booth Amphitheatre Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Fri, June 30 Gilford, NH Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion Fri, Feb 24 @ 11am
Sat, July 1 Lenox, MA Tanglewood Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Mon, July 3 Vienna, VA Wolf Trap March 18 @ 10am
Thurs, July 6 Philadelphia, PA The Mann Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Fri, July 7 Bethel, NY Bethel Woods Center for the Arts Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Sat, July 8 Canandaigua, NY CMAC Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
Tue, July 11 Queens, NY Forest Hills Stadium Fri, Feb 24 @ 10am
**Jewel to open in place of Emmylou Harris

John Mellencamp’s career in music, spanning more than 35 years, has seen him transition from pop star to one of the most highly respected singer/songwriters of a generation. Mellencamp is incredibly acclaimed; he is a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, a Grammy winner, a recipient of the John Steinbeck Award, ASCAP Foundation’s Champion Award, The Woody Guthrie Award and Americana Music Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award and more recently, the Founders Award, the top honor assigned by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. He is also one of the most successful live concert performers in the world. In 1985, Mellencamp, together with Willie Nelson and Neil Young, created Farm Aid. The social activism reflected in his songs helped catalyze Farm Aid, the concert series and organization that has addressed the struggle of American family farmers for more than 25 years. John Mellencamp’s upcoming full-length album, Sad Clowns & Hillbillies, featuring Carlene Carter, is his 23rd over the course of a remarkable career. Is set to be released on April 21, 2017. Sad Clowns & Hillbillies returns Mellencamp to the musical eclecticism that is, itself, a reflection of his wide-ranging musings on life and showcases a poet who has wisely used the years between youth and the present day to become an absolute master of songwriting and interpretation. That passion and experience resonates most beautifully in this showcase of his music. John also wrote the title song for the upcoming film, The Yellow Birds, an American war film directed by Alexandre Moors and based on the novel The Yellow Birds by Kevin Powers. The film stars Tye Sheridan, Jack Huston, Alden Ehrenreich, Jennifer Aniston, and Toni Collette. John continues to focus on another facet of his artistic expression: painting. His style has progressed over the years as evidenced by several gallery shows and published portfolios, and in recent years he has increased his output by completing over 100 new works. His pieces were shown in 2012 at the Tennessee State Museum in Nashville under the title “Nothing Like I Planned: The Art Of John Mellencamp” and, more recently at the Butler Institute of American Art in an exhibition entitled “The Paintings Of John Mellencamp.” “The Paintings of John Mellencamp” traveled to the Museum of Art-DeLand, Florida and John’s art was showcased at the ACA Gallery in New York. The unique instrumentation of his band and his poignant songs about everyday life in the American heartland, are widely credited with being the forbearer of the Americana/No Depression genre of rural-inflected music. An extraordinary collaboration performed by an ensemble cast of 15 actors and a four-piece live band, comprised of members of John Mellencamp’s band is The Ghost Brothers of Darkland County, a musical with music and lyrics by John Mellencamp, a libretto by author Stephen King and production by T Bone Burnett. The show is being further developed in London, though King and Mellencamp are no longer as actively involved. Mellencamp continues his journey as the walking embodiment of heartland rock; passionate, plain-spoken, and a self-proclaimed rebel. John Mellencamp continues to live and work in Bloomington, Indiana.

A 13-time Grammy winner and Billboard Century Award recipient, Emmylou Harris’ contribution as a singer and songwriter spans 40 years. She has recorded more than 25 albums and has lent her talents to countless fellow artists’ recordings. In recognition of her remarkable career, Harris was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2008. Harris is known as much for her eloquently straightforward songwriting as for her incomparably expressive singing. Admired through her career for her talent as an artist and song connoisseur, Harris shook up country radio in the 1970s, and established herself as the premiere songwriter of a generation selling more than 15 million records and garnering 13 Grammy Awards (this year she and Rodney Crowell won the Grammy for “Best Americana album”), three CMA Awards, and two Americana Awards. Harris is one of the most admired and influential women in music. She has recorded with such diverse artists as Linda Ronstadt, Daniel Lanois, Bob Dylan, Mark Knopfler, Neil Young, Gram Parsons, Willie Nelson, Dolly Parton, Roy Orbison, Ryan Adams, Beck, Elvis Costello, Johnny Cash, Lucinda Williams, Lyle Lovett and most recently Rodney Crowell. Few artists have achieved such honesty or have revealed such maturity in their writing. Forty years into her career, Harris continues to share the hard-earned wisdom that—hopefully if not inevitably—comes with getting older, though she’s never stopped looking ahead. A longtime social activist, Harris has lent her voice to many causes. She has performed at Lilith Fair, helping promote feminism in music and organizing several benefit tours to support the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation. Harris is also an avid supporter of animal rights and is actively involved in Bonaparte’s Retreat, the dog rescue organization that she founded.

Kristen Foster/Jamie Bertel

Comments are closed.
Powered by Rockhouse Partners, an Etix company.