musicreporterblog

Musings on folk, Americana, country, bluegrass and newgrass


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Annual Rooster Walk Music and Arts Festival 12 postponed until 2021

This isn’t an April Fool’s joke, unfortunately. As the live music festival and concerts cancellations continue to pour in, it breaks my heart to announce that Rooster Walk Music and Arts Festival 12 has decided to postpone this year’s event to Memorial Day Weekend 2021.

From the good folks at Rooster Walk:
“After a lot of careful thought, research and discussion, Johnny, William and the Rooster Walk board of directors have made the very difficult decision to postpone RW12 until Memorial Day weekend of next year (May 27-30, 2021). We are heartbroken that we won’t get to see you at Pop’s Farm this spring, but ultimately the health and safety of everyone involved with the festival is our top priority. Like everyone, we’re hoping daily life will be getting back to “normal” by the late summer/fall, but we’ve decided there are too many unknowns, and therefore too much risk, to try to put on Rooster Walk later this year. We are hoping to host several live concerts at Pop’s in the late summer/fall, with on-site camping, if it’s safe to do so. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for updates on that front.

“This decision will have some very tough financial consequences on our nonprofit company, but we are determined to survive 2020 and put on our best festival ever in 2021. We know everyone is hurting right now, and we respect the fact that some patrons may NEED a refund. For those who can make do without asking for a refund, we humbly ask that you do us that HUGE favor because it might be the difference in our ability to put on a couple fall events instead of strictly going into “survival mode.”

“If you’ve already bought a ticket to Rooster Walk 12, you have three options related to your ticket purchases:

1) If you’d like to keep your tickets to use at Rooster Walk in 2021, you don’t need to do anything. All tickets already sold will be honored at Rooster Walk in 2021, even if ticket prices increase in the future.

2) If you need a refund, email info@roosterwalk.com with REFUND in the subject line by 5 pm EST Friday, April 17th, and tell us which tickets you are requesting a refund for. We will refund these tickets in full, less the service fees charged by the ticket company.

3) If you’d like the ticket money to be considered a donation to us, please shoot an email to info@roosterwalk.com with DONATION in the subject line. We are a 501c3 nonprofit, and we will send you a tax donation letter for your records.

“Thank you for your support. We’re lucky to have such a strong festival family! We look forward to seeing you at upcoming events.”

Indeed.


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Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival cancels Spring 2020 festival

More sad news as music festivals continue to cancel in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, this time from the good folks over at Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival:

CHATHAM COUNTY, NORTH CAROLINA — “The time has come to make a tough decision regarding the 18th Annual Spring Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival of Music & Dance.

“As you all know, Shakori Hills is a very special place that brings together music and dance fans twice a year to celebrate life and art. Therefore, you know how painful it is to announce the cancellation of the Spring 2020 festival due to the coronavirus.

“Carol Woodell, board president of the Shakori Hills Community Arts Center (SHCAC), would like you to know, “In the interest of slowing the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and with particular concern for the health of our festival family, the performers, staff, and our Chatham County community, it is with deep sadness that we are canceling our Spring festival,” said Carol Woodell, board president of the Shakori Hills Community Arts Center.

“The SHCAC is also cancelling all other programs until further notice, including all Road to Shakori shows, the Junior Appalachian Musicians classes, and multiple voice and art classes.”

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Rooster Walk 12 announces festival is still on for May 21-24 for now

After the sad announcement earlier today that MerleFest 2020 is cancelled, this happy news is just in from the good folks over at the Rooster Walk 12 Music & Arts Festival set for May 21-24, 2020, at Pop’s Farm, located between Martinsville and Danville, Virginia:

“The Rooster Walk Family has been closely monitoring news and government reports concerning the Coronavirus disease. We have been in close communication with Virginia Department of Health officials, and will continue to hold an open dialogue with them in the coming days and weeks.

With Rooster Walk still more than two months away, there’s no need to make an immediate, final decision on the fate of this year’s festival. As such, we are currently proceeding with our plans and hope to host Rooster Walk 12 at Pop’s Farm from May 21-24, 2020. However, we are going to postpone our final band announcement, which was previously scheduled to be released on March 18th. If the festival goes on as scheduled, we will implement expanded safety measures on-site, as suggested by state and federal health organizations, such as extra hand washing & hand sanitizing stations, and extra staffers to sanitize public areas during the festival (tables, door handles, etc.). In addition, we will encourage anyone who is sick, or feels that they may be getting sick, to stay home and not attend the event.

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Consider this before cancelling: MerleFest has more than $12 million regional economic impact

WILKESBORO, NORTH CAROLINA —  MerleFest organizers are agonizing over whether to cancel the music festival that attracts some 80,000 Americana fans honoring the legacies of the late, great Doc and Merle Watson. The deliberations are in direct response to Gov. Roy Cooper’s Thursday announcement about limiting crowds to fewer than 100 to stop the spread of coronavirus.

MerleFest officials wrote on the website Thursday: “We will be issuing an official statement concerning MerleFest 2020 by the close of business on Friday, March 13. Thank you for your patience and support.”

In the meantime, let’s take a look at the economic impact this music festival, which for the past 30 years has acted as the unofficial kick off to the music festival season, has on the region, keeping in mind this does not include music and merchandise sales for the artists, etc.

In 2019, MerleFest reported the following economic impact on the Wilkes Community College; Wilkesboro; and surrounding Wilkes County.

For the uninitiated, WCC closes down its campus during the last full week of April to become home to MerleFest.

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MerleFest announces final lineup additions for 2020 festival 

This just in from the good folks over at MerleFest:

MerleFest, presented by Window World, is proud to announce the next round of artist additions for MerleFest 2020, which will be held April 23-26. Greensky Bluegrass, Mavis Staples, Paul Thorn, Cane Mill Road, Sweet Potato Pie, The Barefoot Movement, Nefesh Mountain, and Smitty and the Jumpstarters will be joining the annual homecoming of musicians and music fans on the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Greensky Bluegrass: “There’s this great duality to our band,” reflects Greensky Bluegrass mandolinist vocalist and songwriter Paul Hoffman. “We’re existing in a few different places at once. We’re a bluegrass band and a rock band. We’re song-driven and interested in extended improvisation.” Formed in 2000 in Kalamazoo, Michigan, Greensky Bluegrass kicked off their career playing living rooms and open mic nights across the Midwest. By 2005, they were touring nationally, and by 2006, they were playing the first in a long series of appearances at the annual Telluride Bluegrass Festival. Bandmates Hoffman, Bruzza, dobro player Anders Beck, banjoist Michael Arlen Bont, and upright bassist Mike Devol spent most of the following decade on the road, fine-tuning a live show modeled not after the toned-down production of traditional bluegrass music, but the full-on spectacle of rock. Greensky Bluegrass will perform Friday night on the Watson Stage. Continue reading


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Yarn, Josh Shilling and Lizzy Ross to headline annual Arts at the Rives opening party on Jan. 25

Despite the total and tragic loss of the historic Rives Theatre in a fire in February 2019, the show must go on and the Arts at the Rives opening party concert promises to be as entertaining as ever!

This show will take place at Forest Park Country Club in Martinsville, Virginia. For $125 per ticket, you will receive entry to this show, which includes open bar (beer, wine, liquor) and catered dinner, as well as a Season Pass to the 2020 Rives On The Road concert series. The concert series will feature at least 4 more shows over the course of 2020. The revenue generated by Season Pass sales helps us offer world-class programming throughout the 2020 year. There is no better way you can support live music in MHC than attending this show!

Party-only tickets are available now for $75. These tickets include the concert, open bar and catered dinner at the show.

Dinner menu: Salad, lasagna (meat and veggie options), grilled chicken breast, red potatoes, green beans, corn, rolls, two deserts.

Roots rockers Yarn will join forces with piano ace Josh Shilling and vocalist extraordinaire Lizzy Ross (Violet Bell), as well as a full horn section, to recreate the music of Van Morrison. This same set was a huge hit at the 11th annual Rooster Walk Music & Arts Festival in May 2019.



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MerleFest 2020 adds Melissa Etheridge, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, The Marcus King Band, and more

From the good folks at MerleFest:

MerleFest, presented by Window World, is proud to announce the next round of artist additions for MerleFest 2020, which will be held April 23-26. Melissa Etheridge, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, The Marcus King Band, Christone “Kingfish” Ingram, and John Cowan will be joining the annual homecoming of musicians and music fans on the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Today’s lineup announcement adds five great artists to MerleFest’s already stacked lineup: Willie Nelson & Family, Alison Krauss, John Prine, The Jerry Douglas Band, Sam Bush, Billy Strings, Jim Lauderdale, Kruger Brothers, The Waybacks, Scythian, Donna the Buffalo, Peter Rowan and the Free Mexican Airforce, Tommy Emmanuel, Colin Hay, Shinyribs, Charley Crockett, Darrell Scott, The Steel Wheels, Kelsey Waldon, Gangstagrass, Robbie Fulks, Amythyst Kiah, Cordovas, Alison Brown, Andy May, “B” Townes, Banknotes, Bill and the Belles, Bryan Sutton, Carol Rifkin, Charles Welch, Chatham Rabbits, Che Apalache, The Cleverlys, Creole Stomp with Dennis Stroughmatt, David Holt, Fireside Collective, Flattop, Happy Traum, Hogslop String Band, InterACTive Theatre of Jef, Irish Mythen, Iron Horse Bluegrass, Jack Lawrence, Jeff Little Trio, Jody Carroll, Joe Smothers, Ken Crouse, Laura Boosinger, The Local Boys, Los Texmaniacs, Mark Bumgarner, Mary Flower, Mitch Greenhill, Pete & Joan Wernick, Piedmont Bluz, Presley Barker, Rev. Robert Jones, Roy Book Binder, Sierra Ferrell, String Madness, T. Michael Coleman, Tony Williamson, Wayne Henderson, The Moore Brothers, The Williams Brothers, and Wyld Fern.

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MerleFest announces 2020 festival lineup additions of John Prine, Colin Hay, Billy Strings, Kelsey Weldon and more

From the good folks over at MerleFest:
MerleFest, presented by Window World, is proud to announce the next round of artist additions for MerleFest 2020, which will be held April 23-26. John Prine, Billy Strings, Colin Hay, Kelsey Waldon, and Gangstagrass will be joining the annual homecoming of musicians and music fans on the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Today’s lineup announcement adds five great artists to MerleFest’s already stacked lineup: Willie Nelson & Family, Alison Krauss, The Jerry Douglas Band, Sam Bush, Jim Lauderdale, Kruger Brothers, The Waybacks, Scythian, Donna The Buffalo, Peter Rowan and the Free Mexican Airforce, Tommy Emmanuel, Shinyribs, Charley Crockett, Darrell Scott, The Steel Wheels, Robbie Fulks, Amythyst Kiah, Cordovas, Alison Brown, Andy May, “B” Townes, Banknotes, Bill & The Belles, Bryan Sutton, Carol Rifkin, Charles Welch, Chatham Rabbits, Che Apalache, The Cleverlys, Creole Stomp with Dennis Stroughmatt, David Holt, Fireside Collective, Flattop, Happy Traum, Hogslop String Band, InterACTive Theatre of Jef, Irish Mythen, Iron Horse Bluegrass, Jack Lawrence, Jeff Little Trio, Jody Carroll, Joe Smothers, Ken Crouse, Laura Boosinger, The Local Boys, Los Texmaniacs, Mark Bumgarner, Mary Flower, Mitch Greenhill, Pete & Joan Wernick, Piedmont Bluz, Presley Barker, Rev. Robert Jones, Roy Book Binder, Sierra Ferrell, String Madness, T. Michael Coleman, Tony Williamson, Wayne Henderson, The Moore Brothers, The Williams Brothers, and Wyld Fern.

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Willie Nelson, Alison Krauss among others return to MerleFest in 2020

From the good folks over at MerleFest:

Presented by Window World, MerleFest is proud to announce the initial lineup for MerleFest 2020, which will be held April 23-26. The annual homecoming of musicians and music fans returns to the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

“For over 30 years, one of the major factors that has built and sustained MerleFest has been the quality of the artists and performances that our guests see over the four-day festival,” says Ted Hagaman, festival director. “People truly feel that the festival is a great value and that is why music fans and families return year after year. We feel that the 2020 lineup again reflects the diversity and quality of performers, and we look forward to another successful festival in April.”

The complete lineup for MerleFest 2020 will be announced over the next few months. For more information, visit www.MerleFest.org.

Today’s lineup announcement includes Willie Nelson & Family, Alison Krauss, The Jerry Douglas Band, Sam Bush, Jim Lauderdale, Kruger Brothers, The Waybacks, Scythian, Donna The Buffalo, Peter Rowan and the Free Mexican Airforce, Tommy Emmanuel, Shinyribs, Charley Crockett, Darrell Scott, The Steel Wheels, Robbie Fulks, Amythyst Kiah, Cordovas, Alison Brown, Andy May, “B” Townes, Banknotes, Bill & The Belles, Bryan Sutton, Carol Rifkin, Charles Welch, Chatham Rabbits, Che Apalache, The Cleverlys, Creole Stomp with Dennis Stroughmatt, David Holt, Fireside Collective, Flattop, Happy Traum, Hogslop String Band, InterACTive Theatre of Jef, Irish Mythen, Iron Horse Bluegrass, Jack Lawrence, Jeff Little Trio, Jody Carroll, Joe Smothers, Ken Crouse, Laura Boosinger, The Local Boys, Los Texmaniacs, Mark Bumgarner, Mary Flower, Mitch Greenhill, Pete & Joan Wernick, Piedmont Bluz, Presley Barker, Rev. Robert Jones, Roy Book Binder, Sierra Ferrell, String Madness, T. Michael Coleman, Tony Williamson, Wayne Henderson, The Moore Brothers, The Williams Brothers, and Wyld Fern.

Tickets for next year’s festival go on sale today and may be purchased at http://www.MerleFest.org or by calling 1-800-343-7857. MerleFest offers a three-tiered pricing structure and encourages fans to take advantage of the extended early bird discount. Early Bird Tier 1 tickets may be purchased from November 12 to February 16, 2020; Early Bird Tier 2 tickets from February 17 to April 22. Remaining tickets will be sold at the gate during the festival.

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