News/Thoughts

Tag Archives: Merlefest

Old Crow Medicine Show and Nitty Gritty Dirt Band to Headline

MerleFest, the annual celebration created in 1988 to honor Merle Watson, the son of the late Doc Watson, is gearing up for their spring festival, and it is shaping up to be a classic. After a successful return from the pandemic stricken music scene this past September (’21), the festival returns to its normal late April spot – April 28th, ...

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Crowning It’s Last Recipients

After nearly 30 years of honoring songwriters, it appears the annual Chris Austin Songwriting Contest will be calling it quits. But not before awarding it’s 2020, and 2021 class – announced at the September 2021 edition of Merlefest. Jim Lauderdale, the long-time contest coordinator and host, was also honored Saturday for his over twenty years of shared expertise, enthusiasm, and ...

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Merlefest: A Must See

“Merlefest, yeah I’ve heard of that! Isn’t that the festival named after Merle Haggard?” This is the “knowledge” most mainstream music fans have about the bluegrass/Americana festival that has been held on the Wilkesboro Community College campus for over a quarter of a century. If you ask a lot of musicians and attendees who return year after year, that misconception ...

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Melissa Etheridge, Mavis Staples, LeAnn Rimes To Headline

2021 marks the year of the return of festivals – and one of the biggest events of the year, at least on the east coast, is Merlefest. Usually taking place in late April, the event once again saw itself fall victim to the covid19 restrictions, and was postponed. However, instead of skipping another year, fest gowers can rejoice. Merlefest, instead ...

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MerleFest All Set For 2020

Originally founded in 1988, Merlefest was created to honor the memory of the son of the late Doc Watson. Eddy Merle Watson was a renowned guitarist in his own right, and traveled and performed often with Doc. The festival is traditionally held at the end of April every year on the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, NC. (4/23 ...

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MerleFest Announces Chris Austin Songwriting Contest Judges

MerleFest, an annual homecoming of musicians and music fans on the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, NC has announced the judges for their 28th Annual Chris Austin Songwriting Contest—a well respected contest for writers of roots and Americana music—held annually in memory of Chris Austin. Austin was an acclaimed musician and songwriter who died in a plane crash ...

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Merlefest Names 2019 Song Contest Winner

Every year, at the famed Merlefest, songwriters enthusiastically via for a chance to compete for the crown as the best songwriter at the Chris Austin Songwriting contest. Now in its 27th year, the contest allows up-and-coming songwriters to perform for a panel of music industry professionals and serves to give talented songwriters exposure. In the Bluegrass category this year, Tellico’s Anya Hinkle took ...

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Covered In Style

A few years ago my wife and I made our annual trek to MerleFest, where thousands gather every April for this premier music event. As you might imagine, like any outdoor festival, you’re either in a camp chair or spread out on the ground. And as often happens in April, there are rain showers, which leave the ground constantly damp. ...

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The Kruger Brothers American Folk

Brothers Jens and Uwe Kruger, originally from Switzerland, began singing and playing instruments at a very young age. “I always wanted to be a musician and a composer,” Jenz told me recently. “I had great encouragement when I was growing up. Although I never had formal training, I always had the opportunity to play with really good people.” German Folk ...

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Its A Festy Thing

Being part of the writing effort for a magazine that focuses upon Americana music means we are blessed with the chance to attend some exceptional music festivals throughout the year. Even when the official editorial call to attend is not there, my wife and I often find ourselves heading off for a whole weekend here or a single day there ...

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