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Dear Kay,

Nashville is shut down. In a city where gathering to hear music is a foundation of our community, this is devastating in so many ways.

Among the rituals of Nashville, the loss of a great musician has been occasion for live TV broadcasts of memorials from the Ryman, funerals that stop traffic, gigantic celebrations.

In a different moment, John Prine’s would have been among the biggest. While the tributes to him online have been almost adequate to the task, there was no chance for the hordes of John Prine fans to gather together and celebrate his life and music.

Maybe it’s a small silver lining, but a silver lining it is, that we can remember John Prine in this virtual worldwide memorial.

Nashville’s public radio station, WPLN, has pulled together a radio wake for this songwriter whose career spanned fifty years. It is as joyous and heartbreaking as pretty much any John Prine song.

Listen to the wake here. 

Thanks to Jason Moon Wilkins and the team at WPLN for this.




  • Thanks for sharing this! I was fortunate to see John Prime perform at the Newport Folk Festival a couple of years ago. His songs could always put a smile on your face and a tear in your eye ❤️

  • My husband would sing to our children many nights after dinner at the kitchen table. Everyone’s favorite was John Prine’s Paradise. Our son and daughter had that song played at their weddings for a family waltz. So special to us! Thank you for posting the tribute.

  • Hi there. Please help. My third request for info on where did the “save this” flag go?

    • Hi Sharon, you just need to sign in again. It won’t show if you’re not actually signed in.

  • Oh Thank YOU!!!! ! Just what I wanted to listen to today!

  • The songs of John Prine have been with me since I was 19 y/o. I’m now 67. Always missed but never forgotten and thank you for bringing his songs to the attention of others.

  • I too am thanking you so much for this post! Knowing that Kay has mentioned John Prine several times over the years, and that he and his family were/are residents of Nashville, I had been anticipating that MDK would be paying some sort of tribute to this great singer songwriter. I was introduced to John Prine’s music as a teen in the late 70s and have been a life long fan (understatement). I had the pleasure of seeing him perform live three times. His music has resonated with me through varying phases of my life and continues to transcend and to heal. I was devastated to learn of his passing. Thank you again for this listening opportunity for me and for those who have yet to discover this amazing and gifted human being.

  • Thank you for sharing this link. We’re been fans of John Prine’s music for many years, along with our family. A loving way to start our Saturday.

  • This was wonderful and touched my heart. My brother and I are big fans and went to hear him every year. Hard to think that he is no longer with us. Thank goodness that we can play his music on and on and on…..

    • This brings back so many memories for me. As a young person just moved to the big city of Chicago, I worked at a folk music club where John played regularly. I don’t know how many times I saw him perform—a lot—and he was extraordinary. Thanks for sharing this.

  • I have seen John Prine live many times – including the House of Blues in New Orleans… nothing short of epic. He was a genius and a gentleman. His was the first celebrity death for which I shed tears.

    • Thank you so much for posting this!
      To my fellow Maywood survivor I say cheers and Rest In Peace. His music will live forever!

  • We saw him in December – so glad we were able to make that show. He is missed. 🙁

  • Thank you for this connection.A great tribute for sure.We loved him in Canada too

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