Loudon Wainwright III
NEW YORK • Zankel Hall • 26 January 2013
|Loudon Wainwright III |
Loudon Wainwright III was born in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. His father was Loudon Wainwright Jr., a columnist and senior editor for LIFE magazine; his mother, Martha Taylor, was a housewife and yoga teacher. He studied acting at Carnegie Mellon University, but dropped out to partake in the Summer of Love in San Francisco.
Loudon wrote his first song in 1968, "Edgar," about a lobsterman in Watch Hill, Rhode Island, and was soon after signed to Atlantic Records by Nesuhi Ertegun. Several years later, Clive Davis lured him to Columbia Records, where 1972's Album III yielded the top 20-hit "Dead Skunk." His recording career now spans a total of 23 albums, including 2009's Grammy-winning High Wide & Handsome, a musical tribute to Charlie Poole (1893-1931), the legendary yet obscure North Carolina singer and banjo player.
Wainwright has collaborated with songwriter-producer Joe Henry on the music for Judd Apatow's hit movie Knocked Up; written music for the British theatrical adaptation of the Carl Hiaasen novel Lucky You; and composed topical songs for NPR's Morning Edition and All Things Considered, and ABC's Nightline.
Wainwright's songs have been recorded by Johnny Cash, Bonnie Raitt, Earl Scruggs, Rufus Wainwright, and Mose Allison, among others. His acting career includes an early recurring role as Captain Calvin Spalding, the singing surgeon, in TV's M.A.S.H. and a stint in Pump Boys and Dinettes on Broadway. His work in film has included collaborations with directors Hal Ashby, Tim Burton, Cameron Crowe, Martin Scorsese, Christopher Guest, and Judd Apatow. He also appeared as a regular in Apatow's critically acclaimed TV series Undeclared.
Loudon's newest CD Older Than My Old Man Now was released last April.
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