World-Class Talent on Tap as MerleFest Brings a Stellar Lineup To Wilkesboro Yet Again

Published Wednesday, April 27, 2016 at 2:00 pm


By Jesse Wood

MerleFest has done it again.

This year’s lineup is spectacular but since that’s the case every single year, it can almost seem like a non-story. Sometimes it feels like I’ve become desensitized to the quality of acts that come to MerleFest every single year – that grace Wilkesboro every single April.

Almost in a way that Doc Watson, the legendary musician who helped launch the festival in honor of his son, the late Merle Watson, in 1988, was kind of taken for granted here in Watauga County throughout the years. Though Doc played at such a world-class level for decades, I think his humble personality – “I am just one of the people” – contributed to that. Because he didn’t act like a superstar and resided in his hometown all his life, it was necessarily big news whenever Doc, one of the most talented and acclaimed musicians ever, would play a concert, a benefit or a local festival. But everyone respected Doc.

And everyone I know appreciates and respects MerleFest – whether or not they are fans of the traditional-plus genre, a coin termed by Doc Watson for the diverse musical styles he enjoyed playing.

Folks have a blast each year they attend MerleFest.

It’s one of nation’s premiere music festivals for a reason, and it’s maintained that reputation because of how well the festival is managed, organized and operated and the quality of acts and ancillary events that perform and take place each year

This year, MerleFest has put together another who’s who of musicians, an incredible lineup of music for four days from Thursday, April 28 to Sunday, May 1. It begins tomorrow.

John Prine, Old Crow Medicine Show, Jason Isbell, John Oates, David Rawlings Machine (with Gillian Welch), Brandi Carlile, The Wood Brothers, Steep Canyon Rangers, Tim O’Brien, Tommy Emmanuel, Jerry Douglas, Sam Bush Band are among the most well-known acts to grace the MerleFest stages this year. Talk about a group of headlining musicians!

Check out the entire schedule here.

For all you need to know about MerleFest, click here. 

The following are among the artists scheduled to perform at MerleFest 2016. Note that the below list was compiled last November and doesn’t include acts that were announced later like Old Crow Medicine Show, Peter Rowan and Doug Seegers, Alison Brown, Brandi Carlile, Tim O’Brien, Sam Bush Band, Jim Lauderdale and John Oates.

Annie Moses Band, Ash Breeze, Jim Avett, Banknotes, The Barefoot Movement, Billy Strings and Don Julin, Roy Book Binder, Blue Mafia, Laura Boosinger, The Bros. Landreth, The Brothers Comatose, Mark Bumgarner, Carbon Leaf, Carol Rifkin with John Fowler and Jeanette Queen, Clyde’s on Fire, The Commons, Commonwealth Bluegrass Band, The Contenders (Josh Day & Jay Nash), Kristy Cox, Sherman Lee Dillon, EmiSunshine, Fireside Collective, Foghorn Stringband, Grace & Tony, Britt Gully, Wayne Henderson, High Plains Jamboree, Bob Hill, Sierra Hull, In With The Old, The InterACTive Theatre of Jef, Tom Feldmann, Fruteland Jackson, Jeff Little Trio, Jeff Scroggins & Colorado, Jeni & Billy, Jonathan Byrd & The Pickup Cowboys, Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice, Kacy & Clayton, Karl Shifflett & Big Country Show, Jack Lawrence, Wanamaker Lewis, Lindsay Lou & The Flatbellys, Liz Frame and The Kickers, The Local Boys, Bonnie Logan, Lou Reid & Carolina, Love Canon, Bill Mathis, Andy May, David and Valerie Mayfield, Penny and Sparrow, Sarah Potenza, Salvador, Shinyribs, The Slocan Ramblers, Kenny and Amanda Smith, Steve and Ruth Smith, Joe Smothers, South Carolina Broadcasters, Sparky & Rhonda Rucker, String Madness with Mitch Greenhill, Susie Glaze & the Hilonesome Band, Bryan Sutton, Sutton, Holt and Coleman, Tellico, The Buck Stops Here, Mark Tobolosky, Happy Traum, April Verch, Liz Vice, Seth Walker, The Waybacks, We Banjo 3, Charles Welch, Pete & Joan Wernick, Westwend, The Whiskey Gentry, Uncle Ted White, Shannon Whitworth, Will Overman Band, The Williams Brothers, Wood & Wire, and Zoe & Cloyd.

Privacy Policy | Rights & Permissions | Discussion Guidelines

Website Management by Outer Banks Media