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The MSU Rock Ensemble will host the rock and roll concert, “We’re An American Band,” at the Morehead Conference Center next Thursday at 7 p.m. (Photo by Guy Huffman)

“We're An American Band,” a live concert featuring music by the great American rock artists that shaped the sound of rock and roll in the early 1970s, will be held at the Morehead Conference Center on Thursday, Nov. 15, at 7 p.m.

The music will be performed by the acclaimed MSU Rock Ensemble, directed by Professor Glenn Ginn, with special guest appearances by MSU faculty.

“With the deadly violence of the Altamont concert in December of 1969, the breakup of the Beatles in April 1970, followed within months by the deaths of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison, the power of rock and roll as a creative and social force seemed to be careening on the edge of oblivion,” Ginn said. “However, a new generation of creative musicians in North America were emerging who had grown up in the 1940s and early 1950s immersed in either jazz, country, or folk music (and sometimes all three), only to discover rock and roll in their teens.”

Ginn said the natural inclination for many of these up and coming musicians was to fuse the musical styles together.

That fusion emerged in the early 1970s as Jazz Rock and Country Rock.

The concert, made up of 24 MSU Rock Ensemble students, showcases the would-be future of rock music.

“In addition to examining these newly emerging trends, we also have included some fantastic straight up good time rock and roll created during the same time period that traces its lineage all the way back to Chuck Berry, Little Richard and Elvis,” he said.

Rock groups and artists to be covered on the concert include The Eagles, The Allman Brothers, Blood Sweat and Tears, Chicago, Steely Dan, America, The Doobie Brothers, James Taylor, Carole King, Linda Ronstadt, Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young, Santana, Rare Earth, Paul Simon Grand Funk, Three Dog Night, Creedance Clearwater Revival, and many others.

The concert features professional sound company with stage lighting and will also include surprise special faculty guests to join the students on stage.

Last year, the ensemble performed a concert based on the “British Invasion,” in which a capacity crowd of more than 500 people attended.

This year, the venue has been expanded and plenty of room will be provided for those in attendance.

“This is a unique, special event,” Ginn said. “Hopefully those in attendance will have a great time, while also learning something about this period of amazing music.”

Tickets are $5 in advance and at the door. MSU students get in free with ID. Doors open at 6 p.m.

This concert is produced by Glenn and Lisa Ginn, with help from assistant producer Daria Denysenko.

This program is funded in part by Morehead State Public Radio, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the MSU Student Government Association, and the Caudill College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences.

Brad Stacy can be reached at bstacy@themoreheadnews.com or by telephone at 784-4116.