‘Unbroken’ Excellence: Nitty Gritty Dirt Band to celebrate anniversary on PBS

Last Updated by Chip Chandler - Digital Content Producer on
“Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: 50 Years and Circlin’ Back”

By Chip Chandler — Digital Content Producer


One of the greatest country-folk bands ever is celebrating its 50th anniversary with a PBS special.

“Nity Gritty Dirt Band: 50 Years and Circlin’ Back” airs at 8:30 p.m. Saturday on Panhandle PBS, featuring the band and several of its famous friends, including Vince Gill, Alison Krauss, Jackson Browne, Jerry Jeff Walker and more.

“We did a PBS special when we did our third ‘Circle’ record, around 2002, and we shot that in Houston as a pledge drive,” lead singer Jeff Hanna told The Boot. “We’re just huge fans of PBS. I don’t know of anyone who doesn’t love public television.”

The “Circle” record Hanna refers to is the band’s series of “Will the Circle Be Unbroken” albums – three in all now, dating back to 1972. They’re the band’s celebration of its roots in traditional country and bluegrass music and, to be honest, three of my all-time favorite albums.

Expect to hear the title track on the special, along with hits like “Mr. Bojangles,” “Fishin’ in the Dark,” “Jambalaya,” “Catfish John” and many more.

Then, stay tuned for “Austin City Limits” at 10 p.m., featuring new tunes by Vampire Weekend and Grizzly Bear, and an encore broadcast of “The Art of the Love Song with the Annie Moses Band” at 11 p.m.