Kerrville Folk Festival Announces Lineup for 49th Year – October 1st-11th
The Kerrville Folk Festival has announced their lineup for their 49th year. Highlights of this year’s festival include, James McMurtry, Shinyribs, Trout Fishing in America, Jaimee Harris, Kyshona, Mobley, Heartless Bastards, the winners of the world famous New Folk competition from both 2020 and 2021, and many more (see full lineup). Normally held in May and June and lasting 18 days on the Quiet Valley Ranch just south of Kerrville, Texas, this year the festival will take place from October 1-11 with the traditional “land rush” happening on September 25th. Tickets are on sale now and come in a variety of packages ranging from single day passes for both adults and teens to tickets that include the entirety of the festival including camping (purchase tickets).
Held every year since 1972, community, perseverance, and love of the song and the songwriter have combined to make Kerrville the longest running music festival in the country. This was perhaps never more true than it is this year in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. With concert venues and festivals across the country shuttering their doors and their own cancellation in 2020 (the festival was still held virtually), the Kerrville staff and the long time patrons of the festival, lovingly referred to as Kerrverts, came together in a major way to preserve the tradition that has helped define the folk music world for nearly 5 decades. With tickets already sold to the 2020 festival and a thwarted attempt to merely postpone the show, the reality of the situation was very clear. Without some significant financial help, Kerrville Folk Festival was going to cease to exist. Executive Director Mary Muse sent the plea to sponsors, ticket buyers, support staff, and the ranch owners from whom they lease to hold the show every year… Kerrville needs your help now more than ever. The response was immediate, overwhelming and quite frankly amazingly heartwarming. Donations came in floods, staff members took significant pay cuts, a year’s lease was forgiven, and most impressively most of the people who had purchased tickets converted their purchases into donations. With this inspiring display of solidarity one of the most respected institutes of its kind was saved.
Muse says of the outpouring of support:
“The Kerrville Folk Festival Community has as many as four generations of attendees, many of whom have attended the Festival their entire lives. During the months of the pandemic when gathering in person was not possible, so many community members committed to the continuance of the Kerrville Folk Festival Foundation by generously donating. If everyone who had made advance purchases for the 2020 Kerrville Folk Festival had requested refunds, we would have closed down our operation by August, 2020. However, nearly 80% of advance purchases were converted to donations, and many others participated in fund-raisers or donated throughout the year. The outpouring of encouraging words and financial support inspired us to live up to an expression often used by the Festival Founder, Rod Kennedy; “Failure is not an option.”
The Kerrville Folk Festival has a deep rooted history and renowned ability to identify and foster new talent as well as a reputation for showcasing established and universally loved acts. The 2021 lineup is no exception. Even with a slightly shorter schedule there are over 100 artists that will be taking the stage this year. The lineup will continue to embrace the traditions that have made Kerrville famous and also look to expand the horizons of the music presented all while maintaining the steadfast dedication to the goals of the festival…The Song. When asked about the diversity of this year’s lineup, Muse offered the following, “The Kerrville Folk Festival’s mission is to celebrate the art and craft of songwriting. The Festival community is one of inclusion and acceptance. We are proactively seeking to make our lineup and our community a reflection of these values, so we are consciously including more genres and more ethnic groups in our musical offerings in hopes of expanding our community to one that is more diverse and colorful!”
Despite obstacles that could never have been foreseen, the 2021 Kerrville Folk Festival stands to be a long lasting testament to the power of music, community, love and tradition. Tents will be set up, RVs will be parked, a temporary city will once again be erected, campfires will be lit, song pulls will last late into the early hours of the mornings, stage lights will be on, and most importantly songs will be sung and heard.
Visit the official Kerrville Folk Festival website for more information:
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