October 03, 2010

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival, S.F., 2010

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, previously Strictly Bluegrass, is an annual free music festival held the first weekend of October in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park.   From its outset, the festival has been subsidized by San Francisco venture capitalist Warren Hellman.   The first festival was held in 2001, originally only inviting bluegrass musicians.   By 2004 artists from other genres were invited and the "Hardly" was added to reflect the expanded scope. Performing artists include (first appearance noted in parentheses): Emmylou Harris, Hazel Dickens, Alison Krauss (all 2001); Steve Earle, Jimmie Dale Gilmore (all 2002); Willie Nelson, Joe Ely, Old Crow Medicine Show, Gillian Welch (all 2003); John Prine, Robert Earl Keen, Ralph Stanley, Del McCoury (all 2004); Roseanne Cash, Joan Baez, Peter Rowan & Tony Rice, Doc Watson (all 2005); Billy Bragg, Richard Thompson, Elvis Costello, T-Bone Burnett, Dolly Parton, Jorma Kaukonen & Jack Casady (all 2006); Los Lobos, Bela Fleck and the Flecktones (both 2007); Gogol Bordello (2008); Booker T., Little Feat, Lyle Lovett & His Large Band, Mavis Staples (all 2009).
(source:   Wikipedia)

These two fellows (above) weren't part of the official lineup, but they were jamming up a storm on the sidelines.   They didn't stop playing long enough for me to ask their names, but there you go -- bluegrass stars of the future.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

This (above) is The Waybacks -- Warren Hood on the left and James Nash on the right, with Sarah Dugas of the Duhks in the middle.   Sarah can belt out a song like nobody's business!

The Hardly Strictly Festival runs for three days, on six stages, and is hugely attended -- did I mention that the festival is absolutely free?   I caught it on Friday, but I'm going to try to attend again today (Sunday) when some of the hottest names in show-business will be performing:

Banjo Stage
11:15am Peter Rowan Bluegrass Band
12:35pm Hazel Dickens
1:45pm Earl Scruggs
3:00pm Doc Watson & David Holt
4:20pm The Del McCoury Band
5:45pm Emmylou Harris

Rooster Stage
11:00am Kevin Welch & Kieran Kane & Fats Kaplin
11:55am Peter Himmelman
1:00pm Indigo Girls
2:10pm Dave Alvin & The Guilty Women
3:25pm Rosanne Cash
4:40pm Nick Lowe & His Band
5:55pm Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings

Star Stage
11:40am Martin Sexton
1:15pm Umphrey's McGee
3:05pm Elvis Costello and The Sugarcanes
5:20pm Mondo Cane

Towers of Gold Stage
11:00am Lucero
12:25pm James McMurtry
2:05pm Randy Newman
4:10pm Patti Smith

Arrow Stage
11:00am The Felice Brothers
12:15pm Moonalice
1:30pm Railroad Earth
2:55pm Keller & The Keels
4:20pm Yonder Mountain String Band
5:45pm The Avett Brothers

Porch Stage
11:00am Marchforth Marching Band
11:50am Citigrass
12:40pm Heidi Clare & AtaGallop
1:40pm Shelby Lynne & Allison Moorer
2:45pm Nathaniel Rateliff
3:45pm Basia Bulat
4:35pm Kate Gaffney
5:35pm Wendy Bird
6:25pm Anderson Family Bluegrass

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

"Hillbillies at heart", this is Blue Highway -- they were picking and singing up a storm.

From left to right;   Jason Burleson, Shawn Lane, Wayne Taylor, Tim Stafford, and Rob Ickes.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

It's a friendly event.   Smiles abound.   Everybody has a good time!

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

A really, really good time!   This fellow accidently brushed against me but apologized with warmth and sincerity that took me way back to the 1960's.

Yes, this is San Francisco, folks -- the spirit of love, peace, and getting-it-on still reigns supreme!   Thanks again to Warren Hellman and his deep-pockets for making it all happen.

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photowannabe said...

Wow, where have I been? Maybe in a cave somewhere.
This sounds like one fabulous event and FREE. Amazing.
Hope you enjoy the day and come back with a scad more photos.

John @ Beans and I on the Loose said...

My daughter went and especially wanted to see Earl Scruggs one more time, just in case. Too many people for me but no doubt a lot of great photo opportunites.

Adam R. Paul said...

We were there yesterday (Sunday) - it was just wonderful, as always. Saw Hazel Dickens, Earl Scruggs, Doc Watson, Nick Lowe, & Sharon Jones - what a lineup!

AphotoAday said...

YEAH PHOTOWANNABE SUE -- I was looking around for you -- you would have been moving and grooving, I'm sure...

And thanks for checking in SINBAD ON THE LOOSE -- yeah, Earl Scruggs is certainly one of the originals... Hope you daughter had a great time...

Fantastic that you were there ADAM PAUL, I wanted to go again on Sunday but I knew the crowds would be incredibly huge -- lots of people on Friday too, but do-able... Even so, I had to park way away -- they always recommend public transportation so I guess that's what I should have done. I have a buddy who attended both Saturday and Sunday -- haven't talked to him yet but I'm sure he had a great time.

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