NPR logo Gillian Welch At The Newport Folk Festival

Gillian Welch At The Newport Folk Festival

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Set List

  • "Look at Miss Ohio"
  • "I Want to Sing That Rock & Roll"
  • "Lawman"
  • "My First Lover"
  • "No One Knows My Name"
  • "Throw Me a Rope"
  • "Gamblin' Man"
  • "Red Clay Halo"
  • "Knuckleball Catcher"
  • "Sweet Tooth"
  • "Orphan Girl"
  • "Gone At Last" (Paul Simon cover)
  • "Jackson" (Rodgers/Wheeler)

David Rawlings and Gillian Welch perform at the Newport Folk Festival. Photo by hide caption

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Gillian Welch and her musical partner David Rawlings filled the Newport air with their gorgeous harmonies throughout this sunny Sunday-afternoon set. They cherry-picked from the whole catalog, but fans were also treated to three brand-new songs. The duo paid the day's second tribute to Johnny Cash (the first was Brandi Carlile's revved-up "Folsom Prison Blues") with a cover of the classic Johnny and June made famous, "Jackson."

It's been five years since Welch released her last album, Soul Journey. That doesn't mean the traditional folk and country singer hasn't been busy. She's recorded with Bright Eyes, Emmylou Harris and Del McCoury and performed at numerous festivals, including a live concert tribute to Paul Simon.

Welch first surfaced on the pop-cultural radar with her 1996 debut, Revival, which transported fans back to 1920s radio while maintaining a foot in the present. Producer T-Bone Burnett kept the album's focus squarely on Welch and her musical partner, David Rawlings. She followed that album with more full-length releases, as well as appearances on several soundtracks, including Songcatcher and the chart-topping O Brother, Where Art Thou? Both albums put Welch and Rawlings square in the middle of the traditional American folk revival.

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