Musings on folk, Americana, country, bluegrass and newgrass

Six reasons you don’t want to miss Phuzz Phest 2016

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Self-pegged as the Camel City’s premier music festival, Phuzz Phest returns April 15-16  for its sixth year with 50 bands scheduled to perform a wide-range of genres at multiple downtown venues and much more in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Festival founder and organizer Philip Pledger has done another outstanding job of attracting breakout talent such as New York indie trio Sunflower Bean, one of this year’s SXSW Music Festival darlings, and Austin-based Southern rockers White Denim, which just released a new album. Both bands are featured in recent issues of Entertainment Weekly.

Not bad for a festival that originally got its start because Pledger’s band and another group booked themselves to play in Winston-Salem on the same weekend.

Providing a unique quality musical experience at an accessible price is Pledger’s goal for Phuzz Phest. A wristband for the two-day festival is only $35, a far cry from many other of today’s music festivals that can charge $100s for the same number of bands. A free community concert featuring Wilmington’s Free Clinic will be held on Thursday to kick off the festival at downtown Winston-Salem’s Artivity Park. Corporate sponsors like locally based Texas Pete help keep ticket prices relatively low.

“If we don’t believe in the music, why should you? And while we are bringing in groups from all over, we’re also trying to help inform people about the music around the Triad as well. We also want people from all over to be able to attend.”

This year’s eclectic music lineup is just part of this festival that includes a movie premiere in conjunction with River Run, a panel discussion about building and sustaining a music community, a coffee conference and community bike rides and yoga.

“No matter what your musical taste is, I think you can find something you enjoy and hopefully discover someone new,” adds Pledger, also founder of Phuzz Records. “I think most of the musicians just want more people to support them.”

Following six other musical reasons you don’t want to miss Phuzz Phest.

  1. Yuck, an indie-rock band all the way from London
  2. Lera Lynn of HBO’s “True Detective” and Nashville
  3. Neon Indian, an electronic artist from Austin featured in River Run film
  4. Thee Oh Sees, a garage-psych group hailing from Los Angeles
  5. Boulevards, bringing vintage funk and R&B from NYC
  6. And Chairlift, folk, rock and electronic band also from NYC

For tickets and more info, visit

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