The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (Jeff Hanna, Jimmie Fadden, Bob Carpenter and John McEuen) will host a star-studded televised PBS special throughout March that was filmed at the historic Ryman Auditorium during a sold-out performance as the iconic group celebrates its 50th anniversary. The special will be broadcast on UNC-TV 3/19 at 9:30 pm and 3/20 at 10:30m pm.

The special also features guest artists, including John Prine, Sam Bush, Vince Gill, Jerry Jeff Walker, Alison Krauss, Rodney Crowell, Byron House, and Jerry Douglas as well as former members, Jimmy Ibbotson (long-time member for decades) and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and early NGDB member Jackson Browne.

“We are so humbled and honored to share the stage with these legendary artists who we’re grateful to call friends. And now our fans will have an opportunity to enjoy this historic show thanks to PBS and the Tennessee Department of Tourism,” Jeff Hanna said.

The special is made possible with support from the Tennessee Department of Tourism. “I’ve been a fan of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band for most of my life,” said Commissioner Kevin Triplett, Tennessee Department of Tourist Development.

“The influence of the band goes far beyond the enjoyment of listening to its music. There are pivotal projects in the history of music that are capable of changing a direction of a genre and raise awareness of an entire generation. It is not an overstatement to say the “Will The Circle Be Unbroken” album is one of those projects. Having the band launch their 50th anniversary celebration from the Mother Church of Country Music – The Ryman is more than appropriate, it is ordained. We’re fortunate to have them as part of ‘The Soundtrack of America, Made in Tennessee,’” Commissioner Triplett added.

There will be an accompanying CD and DVD that include extra songs and performances as well as concert tickets and meet and greets in select markets available exclusively through PBS member stations.

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band continue non-stop touring in celebration of their Golden 50th anniversary planned to run through the end of 2017, with many additional dates to be announced. Plans are to be extensive with select shows featuring special guests in select markets as well as many new exciting show elements. This will be a tour not to be missed.

March 11The Palladium at Center for the Performing Arts – Carmel, Ind.
March 18French Lick Resort – French Lick, Ind.
March 19Little River Casino Resort – Manistee, Mich.
April 08Riverside Casino – Riverside, Iowa
April 09Grand Falls Casino Resort – Larchwood, Iowa .
April 29Las Cruces Downtown – Las Cruces, N.M.
April 30Talking Stick Resort and Casino – Scottsdale, Ariz.
May 13Stone Mountain Arts Center – Brownfield, Maine
May 14The Newton Theatre – Newton, NJ
May 15Infinity Hall – Norfolk, CT
May 18State Theatre – State College, PA
May 20Penn’s Peak – Jim Thorpe, Pa.
May 21The Colonial Theatre – Phoenixville, Pa.
June 02Stiefel Theatre – Salina, KS
June 03Shawnee River Festival – Eldon, Mo.
June 10America’s River Festival – Dubuque, Iowa
June 18Southwind Casino – Braman, Okla.
July 07Country Concert at Hickory Hill – Fort Loramie, Ohio
July 08Hodag Festival – Rhinelander, Wis.
July 09Country Concert – St. Bernard, Ohio
July 17Jamboree In The Hills – Morristown, Ohio
July 30Wayne County Fair – Wayne, Neb.
Aug 05Manitoulin Country Fest – Little Current, Canada
Aug 06Lake Superior Big Top Chautauqua Bayfield, Wis.