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John Paul White

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Dec. 14, 2018 - Singer John Paul White, formerly of the four-time GRAMMY Award-winning duo the Civil Wars, played a brief set at Celebrity Theatre in Phoenix as the opening act for John Prine. White caught the ears of the audience immediately by singing an acapella version of the oft-covered Johnny Mercer oldie "I Remember You," a cut that can be challenging for singers since it calls for a couple of very high, near falsetto notes. After completing the number flawlessly, White accompanied himself on acoustic guitar for a take on "Wish I Could Write You a Song," a cut that he wrote with Grand Ole Opry mainstay Bill Anderson. After playing the aching "Dreams" White took a minute to tell the audience how much he loved John Prine's music and how he grew up dreaming of performing with the star and how happy he was that the fantasy had become reality all these years later. White's between-song stage patter was generally amusing and filled with self-deprecating humor and at one point he jokingly told the audience he was just killing time until he could watch Prine perform, adding, "I know that's something we have in common." Quite to the opposite though, the sell-out crowd was very appreciative of White's set, which also included "Hate the Way You Love Me" and "This Isn't Going to End Well," another cut co-written with a country music legend, Bobby Braddock ("D-I-V-O-R-C-E," "He Stopped Loving Her Today"). An especially touching moment came when White performed "James," a cut inspired by the late Glen Campbell's fight with Alzheimer's disease. Campbell is not name-checked in the song and if White hadn't of explained his inspiration before performing the song, you would never know it had anything to do with Campbell, save for a one-line quote from the Campbell-associated Jimmy Webb song "Wichita Lineman" at song's end. White finished his set with a stunning interpretation of the Electric Light Orchestra hit "I Can't Get it Out of My Head," a performance that garnered him a rousing hero's sendoff.

Shows coming to Celebrity Theatre include:
Jan. 11 and 12 - Styx
Jan. 19 and 20 - Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons
Jan. 25 - Kris Kristofferson & the Strangers
Feb. 9 - Jim Jeffries
Feb. 12 - Chicago
Feb. 22 - Amy Grant

A complete list of shows coming to Celebrity Theatre can be found here

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