WASHINGTON, June 30, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- This July 4, PBS' A CAPITOL FOURTH, America's Independence Day celebration, will feature the world premiere of multi-platinum selling music legend Jimmy Buffett's inspired version of the Americana classic, "This Land is Your Land." Taped in Southern California overlooking the Pacific Ocean, interwoven with iconic scenes from across the country including the Golden Gate Bridge, the Statue of Liberty and the Grand Canyon, the performance also features Coral Reefer band members Mike Utley on keys and Robert Greenidge on steel drums. Originally written in 1940 by folk singer Woody Guthrie, "This Land is Your Land" was not recorded until April, 1944 in New York when Guthrie was on shore leave from the Merchant Marines. In 2002, it became one of 50 recordings chosen that year by the Library of Congress to be added to the National Recording Registry. Buffett previously performed on the 2018 edition of A CAPITOL FOURTH with the Broadway cast of the musical Escape To Margaritaville.
"I have always been a big admirer of Woody Guthrie's…his simple songs and poignant lyrics," Buffett remarked. "They were some of the first songs I learned to play. I have been lucky enough to travel this land, and think it is the best song that encapsulates what America means and is."
"A CAPITOL FOURTH will bring us together showcasing themes of love, hope, unity and patriotism from around our great nation," said Executive Producer Michael Colbert. "We are thrilled to debut Jimmy Buffett's stirring new rendition of 'This Land is Your Land' during America's Independence Day celebration on PBS."
The broadcast will also feature a patriotic July 4 message to the American people wishing everyone a happy and safe Independence Day from the three NASA astronauts on the International Space Station, Robert Shane Kimbrough, Megan McArthur and Mark T. Vande Hei.
Also joining the already announced line-up will be the world's most famous amphibian, international film and television star Kermit the Frog and Broadway and television star Christopher Jackson. Jackson will perform "My Country Tis of Thee," while Kermit the Frog will help celebrate America's 245th birthday with a special performance.
Hosted by multi-platinum recording artist and star of television, film and the Broadway stage Vanessa Williams, the 41st annual broadcast of A CAPITOL FOURTH airs on PBS Sunday, July 4, 2021 from 8:00 to 9:30 p.m. ET, as well as to our troops serving around the world on the American Forces Network. The program can also be heard in stereo over NPR member stations nationwide, and will be streaming on Facebook, YouTube and www.pbs.org/a-capitol-fourth and available as Video on Demand for a limited time only, July 4 to July 18, 2021.
The broadcast will also feature performances and tributes from around our great country by: Tony, Emmy, and Grammy winner and two-time Oscar nominee, Cynthia Erivo from Southern California; multi-platinum selling country music icon and Grammy, CMA and ACM Award-winner Alan Jackson from the famed Ryman Auditorium in Nashville; three-time Grammy Award-winning and multi-platinum selling artists Pentatonix overlooking the downtown Los Angeles skyline; Grammy Award-winning country star Jennifer Nettles from the famed Town Hall in NYC's Times Square with the Broadway Inspirational Voices; acclaimed actress and singer Auli'i Cravalho (MOANA, ALL TOGETHER NOW) in Queens, NY, from the Unisphere, a symbol of peace through understanding; diamond-selling and multi-Grammy Award-winning band Train overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco; and, from Washington, DC: "Empress of Soul" and seven-time Grammy Award-winner Gladys Knight; country music star and Grammy-nominee Mickey Guyton; Tony Award-winning Broadway and television star Ali Stroker; acclaimed ACM New Male Artist of the Year Award-winning, multi-platinum country music singer-songwriter Jimmie Allen; Tony Award-nominated Broadway star Laura Osnes; and the National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of top pops conductor Jack Everly. World-renowned four-time Grammy Award-winning soprano superstar Renée Fleming will open the show with a special performance of the national anthem.
Because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the traditional live concert on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol will not take place. The nation's 245th birthday celebration will continue with Vanessa Williams hosting from Washington, D.C. to introduce all-new pre-taped performances from locations across the country, as well as some special live moments.
A CAPITOL FOURTH is made possible by grants from The Boeing Company, the National Park Service, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the Department of the Army, PBS and public television stations nationwide. Air travel is provided by American Airlines.
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Visit the program website at: http://www.pbs.org/a-capitol-fourth
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