For Throw Back Thursday you get the review I posted at the other music blog in 2010 after the first Fayetteville Roots Festival. The fest has only gotten bigger and better. It’s so awesome. I’m sure @DocMurda would LOVE it. Enjoy:
The First Annual Fayetteville Roots Festival on August 29th was set to take place at Greenhouse Grille, but after a water main broke at Greenhouse Grille the festival was moved to George’s Majestic Lounge. Hats off to the festival organizers and to George’s management and staff, because the evening ran smoothly, as if everything that happened was part of the plan.
The music-filled evening went better than I expected. I left George’s that night with a couple of new albums for my collection, after being blown away by some of the performances. I know I’m not alone when I say that this festival definitely has all the right components to become a Fayetteville classic; from the award-winning artists, to the welcoming audience, and a community coming together in case there’s a water main that breaks at the very last minute.
Doug & Telisha Williams
The show starter out with Doug & Telisha Williams, from Martinsville, VA. The couple set the tone for the evening with songs like “20.2,” a song about the current unemployment rate in their home town. Their lyrics are harsh and powerful, and you can’t help but smile at the explanations they offer for some of them. Like that of the gospel song “with a really bad word in it.”
Nora Jane Struthers
Nora Jane Struthers, from Nashville, TN, was the second act of the night. The 2010 Telluride Bluegrass Festival Band Competition winner was accompanied by P. J. George, one of the Bootleggers, Struthers’ band. The ex-English teacher’s harmonies filled the garden at George’s. After listening to “Evelyn,” a song from her debut album, I decided to take her album home with me. Her music carries her inspiration from being on the road, working with her students, and making music she loves.
Anthony Da Costa, Rayna Rose, and John Elliott
Brian Hembree, from 3 Penny Acre and festival organizer, introduced this third set of the evening as a “mind-blowing act” that he just had to bring to Fayetteville. That statement raised my expectations, only for them to be completely shattered by their set. They’re amazing together, complementing each other’s music perfectly on stage. Anthony Da Costa, Rayna Rose and John Elliott are all singer-songwriters that (and I don’t know the whole story) come together to perform a few of their individual hits. From NYC, Austin, and Los Angeles, respectively, these three artists blew Fayetteville, and me, away that night.
By the way, one of my favorite songs of the night was John Elliot’s “Grandpa” song. Just had to share that with you.
The Honey Dewdrops
Laura Wortman and Kagey Parrish are The Honey Dewdrops. One of the most awaited sets of the night. Although, I was not very impressed by their set. That was probably because I enjoyed the previous set so much, but the rest of the audience seemed happy with the husband and wife duet. They performed one of their beloved hits, “Bluest Blue Eyes.” From Charlottesville, VA, The Honey Drewdrops came to Fayetteville with an array of beautiful break-up songs. “We never fight,” Laura told the audience, “So we direct that energy into these songs.”
3 Penny Acre
Fayetteville’s own 3 Penny Acre came to stage as the last act, before the final jam of the night. Their set brought some of the performers to the front row, to enjoy and sing along 3 Penny Acre‘s “Highway 71,” title track of their latest album.
David Glaser and Ryan Spearman joined them on stage for a couple of songs. And for the grand finale, all the performers came to stage and jammed for a few minutes, leaving everyone at George’s ready for a wonderful week.
This festival will only get bigger and better. Get ready for next year! And if you want to see the rest of the photos of the night, they are here.