With six female or female-led acts on the bill, Sunday’s celebration in Hastings aims to close out the summer with transfixing music. Get the preview, schedule and playlist at Local Spins.
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Starting a new music festival has its share of the usual, daunting challenges — and the Thornapple Arts Council took it even one step further when it hatched the concept for the Fair Ground Festival taking place Sunday in Hastings.
It “started with the idea that music should create fair ground for all artists and performers,” spawning “a community effort to support women in the music industry and create connections to support artists’ careers, stimulate a local economy and draw attention to beautiful Barry County.”
The council’s mission statement says a lot about the all-female-led lineup for the inaugural celebration at Barry County Expo Center, with the Portland, Ore., folk/rock/pop trio of sisters Joseph headlining the festival that also features The Accidentals, The Crane Wives, Ruthie Foster, Patty PerShayla & The Mayhaps and Kyshona.
“What makes it special is just the fact that Thornapple Arts Council took this huge leap of faith to host a festival that encourages diversity and equality in the industry, and we get to be on the inaugural bill with people we absolutely love,” said multi-instrumentalist Sav Buist of Traverse City alt-folk band The Accidentals.
“We toured with Patty Pershayla all year and she gets to rock a set with her band. We also played a show at SXSW with Ruthie Foster and were blown away. We’re writing in Nashville with Kyshona right now and The Crane Wives need no introduction; they introduced us to mid-Michigan when we were just getting started. Add Joseph to that mix as our bucket list band to get to know better and that’s a killer lineup.”
Joseph — sisters Natalie Closner Schepman, Allison Closner and Meegan Closner — is touring behind the trio’s latest studio album, “The Sun,” released in late April.
The Accidentals, meanwhile, have been touring with their new drummer Katelynn Corll, of Detroit; West Michigan native Pershayla recently released a new EP; blues/folk/gospel artist Ruthie Foster is a multiple Blues Music Award winner; The Crane Wives are launching a fall U.S. tour that already boasts numerous sold-out shows; Nashville singer-songwriter Kyshona Armstrong is also an activist and music therapist.
THE FAIR GROUND FESTIVALWHEN: Sunday (Aug. 27)
WHERE: Barry County Expo Center, 1350 M-37, Hastings
QUOTE: “We’re really thankful for the opportunity to kick off this really important festival and we really hope you show up and support it.” – Sav Buist of The Accidentals
TICKETS: General admission adult, $50; general admission children 4-10, $25; VIP, $125-$250; parking pass, $5. Get tickets here.
WEATHER FORECAST (as of Aug. 24): High of 75 degrees, partly sunny
THE FAIR GROUND FESTIVAL 2023: The Local Spins Playlist
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