The beloved northern Michigan festival today announced the 60-plus-act lineup for July, including Marc Broussard, Sweet Water Warblers, Myron Elkins, Gina Chavez and The Crane Wives.
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Internationally renowned bluegrass and folk stars young and old pump up this year’s lineup for northern Michigan’s Blissfest, with Valerie June, Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway, Abigail Washburn, Lindsay Lou and The Steel Wheels on tap for the July celebration.
The festival today announced its lineup of more than 60 acts for the July 7-9 festival outside Harbor Springs, with acclaimed singer-songwriters Colin Hay, Marc Broussard, Gina Chavez, Myron Elkins and May Erlewine also on the bill.
Blissfest, which returned to its festival site near Cross Village last summer after a three-year COVID hiatus, once again will revel in a weekend of renowned folk, roots and bluegrass artists, many of them Michigan-based acts.
Wristbands for the 2023 festival – $170 members, $200 non-members, $80 teens – are on sale now at blissfestfestival.org, along with campsite reservations.
“While curating this festival, I was looking for artists that have a very strong presence and a deep understanding of their art. Everyone on this lineup shows how powerful art can be and how important it is for our well-being to have culture,” said Caroline Barlow, artistic director for Blissfest Music Organization.
“The themes begin to develop as the artists fall into place. The process is both intentional and magical. We have a lot of banjo this year in both old-time and bluegrass styles, percussive dancers, many incredible women, and a lot of bands that rock.”
Tennessee multi-instrumentalist Valerie June, 41, is a Grammy Award-nominated artist who’s collaborated with a variety of artists over the years and whose rootsy music covers several genres, from R&B to bluegrass.
Guitarist and singer Molly Tuttle, 30, meanwhile, has soared to stardom in recent years, winning a Grammy for best bluegrass album earlier this year while also performing with the likes of Billy Strings, Sierra Hull and others. (Tuttle also plays Hoxeyville Music Festival outside Wellston in August.)
Banjoist Abigail Washburn, 45, has become an icon of old-time folk music and has toured regularly with her husband, virtuoso banjoist Bela Fleck.
And singer-songwriter Colin Hay, 69, first made a splash with the Australian band Men at Work, and has since released more than a dozen solo studio albums.
The festival — expected to attract about 4,500 people — will also feature sets by Yasmin Williams, Joe Hertler & The Rainbow Seekers, Jourdan Thibodaux & Les Rodailleurs, Miss Tess, Armchair Boogie, My Son the Hurricane, The Crane Wives, The Bright Siders, Jack Blount, Nic Gareiss & Laurel Premo, The Sweet Lillies, The Sweet Water Warblers, Crys Matthews, Rachael Davis, Adrian + Meredith, R.O. Shapiro and Deep Fried Pickle Project, among many others.
Many artists such as Seth Bernard, The Marsupials, John D. Lamb, Dr. Goodhart’s Home Remedy, Chris Michels Band, Robin Lee Berry and others have played Blissfest regularly over the years, while others, such as Michigan’s new Moss Manor super-group, will perform at the festival for the first time.
“All of the headliners are special to us. Abigail Washburn especially has been an inspiration to me,” Barlow said. “I’m excited that it’s The Crane Wives’ first year to Blissfest. People should watch out for Myron Elkins, but you already know that. A do-not-miss performance will be Gina Chavez. And I’m really happy to share a lot of local to Emmet County musicians as well.”
The festival will also feature drum and dance, silent disco, healing arts and other activities.
VIDEO: Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway, “Nashville Mess Around”
VIDEO: Valerie June, “Don’t It Make You Wanna Go Home”
VIDEO: Abigail Washburn and Bela Fleck, “Come All You Coal Miners/Take Me to Harlan”
VIDEO: Colin Hay, “Love is Everywhere”
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