Annabelle’s Curse, one of my favorite music festival discoveries at FloydFest and Rooster Walk Music and Arts Festival, has released a new single/video, “You and Me Forever,” that was recorded during the 2018 Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion at Classic Recording Studio in the heart of the festival. They even invited some friends to stop by and record backing vocals. Continue reading
Some 45,000 music lovers from all over the world will gather on State Street in historic Downtown Bristol, Tennessee-Virginia for the 18th annual Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival on Sept. 21-23. The event honors the twin cities’ unique history as the place where the legendary 1927 Bristol Sessions were recorded.
Listen up music festival lovers: Labor Day Weekend 2018 has plenty of opportunities in North Carolina, Virginia and beyond. Continue reading
Tired of listening to the same old music? Front Porch Fest, held at the picturesque Spirit Haven Farm in Stuart, Virginia, over Labor Day weekend, may be just the ticket. You’ll not only be exposed to some new tunes, you’ll also have the opportunity to support some great causes.
“Front Porch Fest is a great place to hear someone you have never heard of and leave with new music in your heart,” festival Executive Director Chris Prutting told me in 2015. “I’ve grown up with music and friends playing in bands. I love the bands no one has heard of. If you come to Front Porch Fest, you will leave with a whole new catalog of music. We’ve always prided ourselves on getting bands right before they make it.”
Among the acts lined up for Front Porch Fest set for Aug. 30 – Sept. 2 include Perpetual Groove, Zach Deputy, the Larry Keel Experience, Big Daddy Love, Annabelle’s Curse, the Couldn’t Be Happiers, Urban Soil, Slick Jr. & the Reactors, among others. A distinctive feature of this festival, which attracts a few thousand attendees, are its three stages with no overlapping sets so music lovers don’t have to miss a beat.
I have no idea how the North Carolina Brewers and Music Festival, which combines two of my favorite things, hasn’t hit my radar until now. Maybe it’s because it’s located at 4431 Neck Road in Huntersville, just north of Charlotte. Or maybe it’s because the organizers just never thought to reach out to me since it began in 2011, from what I can gather from the website.
It’s certainly not because of the music, or the featured breweries.
While 2017 will be remembered for many things, it turned out to be a great year for new music. Artists including Steve Earle & the Dukes, Lee Ann Womack, Chris Stapleton, Rhiannon Giddeons and Jason Isbell turned out some amazing albums over the past 12 months, but you don’t need me to tell you that.
Instead, I am going to focus on my own purely subjective list that evolves mainly from music festivals I attended, interviews I conducted and stories I published online on this blog, HalfwaySouth.com or on HuffPost that features my favorite genres (primarily folk, Americana, country, rock) and up-and-coming artists that I hope you will take the time to listen to in the coming year and beyond.
And now, in no particular order, here’s my picks for the best listens of 2017. Happy listening! Continue reading