Exclusive Stream: Patti Smith and Tony Shanahan’s ‘Oh Yoko’

Listen to a live track from the annual John Lennon tribute concert in New York

By Rolling Stone
November 8, 2011 10:50 AM ET

Patti Smith by Melodie McDaniels

Patti Smith by Melodie McDaniels

Click to listen to Patti Smith & Tony Shanahan’s ‘Oh Yoko’

The 30th Annual John Lennon Tribute, Live from the Beacon Theatre, NYC, a 15-track live album collecting highlights from the concert last year, will hit stores on November 15th. One of the standout tracks in the set is Patti Smith and Tony Shanahan’s stirring rendition of “Oh Yoko,” which you can stream here.

“My late husband, Fred ‘Sonic’ Smith, and I – like all of you – wept together when we lost John,” Smith told the audience on the night of the performance. “And at the end of 1994 in November, I lost Fred. I look to Yoko as an example of how to carry one’s self as a widow – to do one’s work, to raise one’s children, and to find joy in life and to always have your loved one walk with you.”

You can pre-order the album now through iTunes.
Proceeds from the record will go to the Japanese Red Cross and its earthquake and tsunami relief efforts.

Read more at Rolling Stone

Theatre Within’s 31st Annual John Lennon Tribute in NYC: Dec 10th. Tickets, album & info here

Theatre Within’s 31st Annual John Lennon Tribute

Theatre Within’s 31st Annual John Lennon Tribute will take place at Le Poisson Rouge, 135 Bleecker St., New York City on Saturday, December 10, 2011 at 7pm.

Now recognized as the longest running John Lennon Tribute in the world, our annual celebration of Lennon’s life, music and eternal message is always a warm and wonderful evening and this year will be no exception!

Last year’s milestone event brought together an all-star line-up featuring rock legends Jackson Browne and Patti Smith, plus Cyndi Lauper, Aimee Mann, Taj Mahal, Martin Sexton, Joan Osborne and many other and many other great artists for the benefit of Playing For Change Foundation.

For exclusive ticket presales, click here & use passcode: LENNON31

Support Theatre Within & receive album of 30th Tribute

Become a supporter of the 31st Annual John Lennon Tribute by making a secure online, tax-deductible donation to Theatre Within.

For a donation of $35 you’ll receive our new album, The 30th Annual John Lennon Tribute Live from the Beacon Theatre. The limited, collector’s edition features memorable performance by Jackson Browne, Patti Smith, Taj Mahal, Aimee Mann, Martin Sexton and many other great artists.

Please note: The 30th Annual John Lennon Tribute CD is available through Theatre Within only. Please allow 4-6 weeks for delivery.

Those who donate by November 30, 2011 will be acknowledged in the official Tribute program.
Donations are receipted and tax deductible.
Donate here.

by Gary Graff
October 07, 2011

Patti Smith, Jackson Browne, Meshell Ndegeocello, Bettye LaVette and Aimee Mann are among the artists featured on “The 30th Annual John Lennon Tribute, Live From the Beacon Theatre NYC,” which is due out Nov. 15. Proceeds from the 15-track digital album will benefit the Japanese Red Cross’ earthquake and tsunami relief efforts.

The performances of Beatles and Lennon solo songs were recorded during the 30th annual Lennon tribute show, which took place Nov. 12, 2010. Browne performed “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away” while Smith and guitarist Tony Shanahan played “Oh Yoko,” Ndegeocello sang “God,” Aimee Mann took on “Jealous Guy,” and LaVette delivered “The Word,” which she covered on her Grammy Award-nominated 2010 release “Interpretations: The British Rock Songbook.” Taj Mahal, Shelby Lynne,Joan Osborne, Alejandro Escovedo, Keb’ Mo’, Martin Sexton and the Playing For Change Band are also featured on the album.

“John would have loved that Theatre Within has produced a special live album of his songs to benefit the Japanese Red Cross and the people still suffering from the tsunami and earthquake,” Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, said in a statement. Theatre Within has presented the tribute concert since 1981, with Ono’s support and endorsement.

The 31st Annual John Lennon Tribute concert is scheduled for Dec. 10 at Le Poisson Rouge in Greenwich Village; performers are scheduled to be announced soon.

Concert creator and producer Joe Raiola added that, “John’s music and message continue to be a great inspiration to people everywhere, but he holds a special place in the hearts of New Yorkers, one that comes alive in a tremendously emotional way at each Tribute. We’re so grateful to Yoko and to all of artists for allowing us to share the great performances from that special night with John Lennon fans around the world.”

The album will be available via all major online retailers.

The full track list for “The 30th Annual John Lennon Tribute, Live from the Beacon Theatre NYC” includes:

  • Aimee Mann, “Jealous Guy”
  • Jackson Browne, “You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away”
  • Patti Smith and Tony Shanahan, “Oh Yoko”
  • Meshell Ndegeocello, “God”
  • Alejandro Escovedo, “Help!”
  • Shelby Lynne, “Mother”
  • Martin Sexton, “Working Class Hero”
  • Joan Osborne, “Hey Bulldog”
  • Taj Mahal and Vusi Mahlasela, “Watching the Wheels”
  • Keb’ Mo’, “In My Life”
  • Taj Mahal with Deva Mahal and Steph Brown, “Come Together”
  • Bettye LaVette, “The Word”
  • Rich Pagano, “Power To The People”
  • The Kennedys, “And Your Bird Can Sing “
  • Playing For Change Band, “Instant Karma”

About The Annual John Lennon Tribute

It began just down the street from the Dakota, in Billie Holiday’s old music studio, which was then home to Theatre Within, an experimental theater workshop. A small group of performing artists and their friends were drawn together by John Lennon’s senseless murder. An emotional evening of song, dance and theater, that first gathering in John’s memory was an instinctive outpouring of sorrow and grief. Since then, the Tribute has transformed into a joyful celebration of the life, music and creative spirit of John Lennon.

Created in 1981 by Theatre Within founder, Alec Rubin, and his then student Joe Raiola, the Annual John Lennon Tribute in New York is now recognized as the longest running such event in the world. Each year’s Tribute brings together an enormously talented and diverse group of singer-songwriters, musicians and other performing artists.

For 20 years the show was directed by Mr. Rubin, with Mr. Raiola assuming the duties of producer and assisting in all areas. When Mr. Raiola took over as Producing Director in 2001, he re-envisioned the Tribute, breaking away from its established improvisational theater format and turning it into a charity benefit.

Upon hearing of the Tribute for the first time in 2004, Yoko Ono invited Mr. Raiola to contribute to her book, Memories of John Lennon.

In 2005, the Silver Anniversary of the Tribute was celebrated at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. Guests included singer-songwriters Cliff Eberhardt, Jen Chapin and then newcomer, Anais Mitchell.

From 2006-2008, the Tribute was held at the Ailey Citigroup Theatre and featured such notable performers as Rosanne Cash, Steve Forbert, Marshall Crenshaw and Michelle Shocked.

In 2008, by bringing Why Hunger together with Yoko Ono, Theatre Within helped launch the “Imagine There’s No’s Hunger” Global Initiative, which has since raised over three million dollars to fight hunger and poverty.

In 2009 at Symphony Space, the Tribute brought together an all-star line-up including Joan Osborne, David Bromberg, legendary R+B singer Bettye LaVette, folk artists Dan Bern and Lucy Kaplanksy, and rising star Nicole Atkins, for the benefit of the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation.

In 2010, the 30th Annual John Lennon Tribute was held at the legendary Beacon Theatre, attracting worldwide attention and featuring a once-in-a-lifetime line-up of artists, including Jackson Browne, Patti Smith, Cyndi Lauper, Aimee Mann, Taj Mahal, Martin Sexton and more. The Tribute raised over $50,000 for the Playing For Change Foundation (PFCF) to help build music schools in communities in need around the world.

More info at http://lennontribute.org