Sturgill Simpson Honors Joan Baez With Chilling Performance Of “House Of The Rising Sun”

A man speaking into a microphone

All this talk about Garth Brooks getting honored and nobody cared to mention that Sturgill Simpson was there?

The 43rd Annual Kennedy Center Honors aired this past Sunday, and the notable honorees included: Debbie Allen, Joan Baez, Midori, Dick Van Dyke, and of course Garth Brooks.

An annual award given to those in the performing arts, the Kennedy Center Honors first began in 1978 to honor those who have greatly contributed to the landscape of the American performing arts history over the course of their careers.

And while the talk of the town was Kelly Clarkson bringing Garth to tears with her performance of “The Dance,” ol’ Stu was there as well to honor Joan Baez.

A personal friend of Simpson’s, he called her one of the “most important figures” in the folk scene.

And Sturgill honored her with a performance of “House Of The Rising Sun.”

A classic folk song, nobody is really sure who wrote, or when, but the earliest known recording is from Appalachian artists Clarence “Tom” Ashley and Gwen Foster, under the title “Rising Sun Blues,” in 1933.

Roy Acuff record it in 1938, Woody Guthrie, Lead Belly, Bob Dylan, and of course The Animals all did it as well, but Joan recorded it for her 1960 debut album, Joan Baez.

I mean, we’re talking about a folk CLASSIC.


Cue the goosebumps.

A beer bottle on a dock


A beer bottle on a dock