Rock and soul phenomenon Gary Clark Jr. has had an incredible 2012, which he caps off this weekend by joining rock icons The Rolling Stones for the band's first U.S. "50 and Counting" concert at The Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY, tonight, December 8th. Both Mick Jagger and Keith Richards met and performed witH Clark at various events this year and have become ardent fans, which led to their asking Clark to sit in with the Stones at some point during this show on Saturday night.
The honor comes on the heels of a string of high points in Clark's year, including the No. 6 Billboard chart debut of his critically acclaimed album Blak And Blu, which received raves from virtually every major music outlet, including The New York Times, which calls Clark "a guitarist of deep magnetism and tremendous feel," and Spin who declared: "There truly is nobody else like him around. A thrilling live performer." NPR enthused, "One of the most highly praised young guitarists in recent times...dexterity and authenticity," while Rolling Stone awarded Clark his second lead review in the magazine (his first appeared in 2011 following the release of The Bright Lights EP), calling him: "A full-fledged guitar hero of the classic school."
Clark was heavily in-demand all summer long as he made the rounds of nearly every major American music festival, including Bonnaroo, Coachella, Austin City Limits Festival, Sasquatch, NOLA Jazz & Heritage Festival, Jay-Z's Made in America, Canada's Osheaga festival, and most recently, invited to perform at this year's prestigious Bridge School Benefit Concerts by Neil Young who introduced Clark by saying, "Today, we've saved the best for first - this guy is fantastic." Other like-minded formidable fans have stepped up to be counted such as Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, Roger Waters, Jimmy Page, Alicia Keys (whose new album includes Clark as a contributor), The Roots, Dave Matthews, David Lynch, Nicole Kidman, President Obama, the afore-mentioned Rolling Stones and so many more.
The Austin-born singer, songwriter, and guitarist extraordinaire was also invited to perform on Good Morning America, The Late Show With David Letterman (twice in the last year), The Tonight Show With Jay Leno, Late Night With Jimmy Fallon (twice in the last year), and Austin City Limits for an episode that will air in February 2013.
After wrapping up tours of the U.K. and Australia, Clark made a triumphant return to the U.S. to perform a string of instantly sold-out tour dates on both coasts last month, including three nights at the Bowery Ballroom in NYC and three nights at the Troubadour in L.A.
Don't Miss Clark performing as part of the 35th Annual Kennedy Center Honors - a star-studded event attended by President and Mrs. Obama and honoring Buddy Guy, Dustin Hoffman, David Letterman, Natalia Makarova, and Led Zeppelin. The Honors Gala, which took place on December 2nd at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C., will air as a two-hour primetime special on Wednesday, December 26 at 9:00 p.m. (ET/PT).