When 2014 is all over, Memphis’ Beale Street music festival may well stand alone as the festival with the strangest and most eclectic lineup.
This year’s shindig is set to be headlined by Foster the People, Motörhead, Alabama Shakes, Pretty Lights, Avenged Sevenfold, and Kid Rock. From there, things just get weirder as Snoop Dogg AKA Snoop Lion, Joan Jett & The Blackhearts, The String Cheese Incident, STS9, Jerry Lee Lewis, Grouplove, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, 311, Juicy J, and Wolfmother are also on the bill.
Other notable acts set to show up (and presumably, play shows) include Dropkick Murphys, Third Eye Blind, Bootsy Collins, Patti Labelle, Chick Corea & The Vigil, Dandy Warhols, Jason Isbell, Seether, Blues Traveler, Fitz and the Tantrums, Dicky Betts, North Mississippi Allstars, MS MR, Carolina Chocolate Drops, and Twenty One Pilots.
“We are bringing the best of the best of touring music talent this year,” says Jim Holt, President & CEO of Memphis in May in a statement announcing the lineup. “We pride ourselves on presenting a diverse line-up designed to appeal to musical enthusiasts from all segments of the population across the country and around the world. The Beale Street Music Festival offers something for virtually every musical taste.” Diverse is one word, Jim.
The festival has also expanded its late night festivities featuring Big Gigantic and Beats Antique on Friday and Saturday night, respectively.
Festival organizers must have had a riot putting together a lineup that also boasts numerous Memphis locals, including rock-n-roll legend Jerry Lee Lewis, who is returning for his 11th performance at Beale Street Music Festival, as well as Juicy J, along with North Mississippi Allstars, Lord T & Eloise, Surrender the Fall, Project Pat, Reba Russell, Memphis Dawls, Freeworld, Will Tucker, Eric Gales, Sonny Burgess and the Legendary Pacers, Herman Green, Ghost Town Blues Band, Blind Mississippi Morris, Daddy Mack Blues Band, Robert “Wolfman” Belfour, Fuzzy Jefferies, David Evans, Brandon Bailey, Leo Bud Welch and Kenny Brown, all of whom will be representing their city with pride.
The festival is set to take place from May 2nd-4th in Tom Lee Park, Memphis.
The fourth incarnation of the annual LouFest has gathered an impressive lineup including Wilco, Alabama Shakes and the Killers.
This year’s version of the event will be held September 7-8 at Forest Park, which is in the heart of St. Louis.
Other notable acts include The National, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Jim James, Fitz and the Tantrums, Local Natives, Ra Ra Riot, Trampled By Turtles and a local group called Kentucky Knife Fight. I’ve never heard of the last artist until now, but am including them as notable purely on the strength of the name — hopefully their music lives up to it.
The Wilco show is something of a homecoming gig for frontman Jeff Tweedy. Though Wilco is based out of Chicago, Tweedy and Jay Farrar started the influential alt-country band Uncle Tupelo just across the river from St. Louis in Belleville, Illinois. Billboard speculates fans may expect to hear an Uncle Tupelo tune or two at the show, which may be a safe bet. A hometown reunion between Tweedy and Farrar, however, is much less likely considering that hell has yet to freeze over, as far as I know.
In addition to the lineup, the festival will feature local food, art and more.
“From premium food vendors from our around the city, an art market with quality local artisans, plenty of fun & cool interactive activities around the park and all things you’ve loved about the classic LouFest experience,” is how the festival’s official website puts it.
Early-bird two-day passes go on sale May 3 for $75, and the prices goes up to $95 when those tickets sell out. This is one of the most affordable festival’s considering the lineup, and perhaps the best part is that all service charges are put into the price. As with most festivals these days, there also are VIP tickets available for $250. These prices include catered food and specialty drinks, air conditioned restrooms and a premium viewing platform.
The Alabama Shakes have had quite the year since the release of their debut album Boys & Girls in April, and now the band is looking to make next year just as good with a slew of U.S. dates scheduled for March 2013.
The new trek will kick off March 1, 2013 at the Knitting Factory Concert House in Boise, Idaho, and the group is scheduled to stay on the road through a March 16 show at Hal & Mal’s in Jackson, Mississippi. In between those dates, the band will play cities including Portland, Oregon; Seattle; Davis, California; Denver; Kansas City and New Orleans. All shows on the tour will be supported by Michael Kiwanuka, Sam Doores and Riley Downing.
These dates will follow some previously announced gigs for the group, as they will travel around Australia with the Big Day Out Tour in January. They also will appear at Lollapalooza Brazil later in March and Lollapalooza Chile in April.
In addition to Boys & Girls, the group has a new song out called “Always Alright.” The song can be found in the new romantic comedy/drama “Silver Linings Playbook,” which stars Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence. Other notable names appearing in that movie include Robert De Niro, Julia Stiles and Chris Tucker.
The group formed in 2009, and began to receive widespread attention when they released four-song self-titled EP in September 2011. By the time Boys & Girls was released the following year, acclaim for the group’s soulful live show had been spreading throughout much of the music industry and landed the group on many late night network talk shows. According to Pollstar, the group’s debut album has sold more than 325,000 copies since its release. Other than “Always Alright,” there has been no official word as to whether the group is planning on releasing any additional new music.
The Alabama Shakes have announced a new fall tour which will add to their already crowded tour schedule.
The new dates will kick off with a free show in Nashville’s Public Square Park as part of the “Live on the Green” concert series on September 27. The tour will then continue through October 12 when the band appears at the Austin City Limits Festival. In between, the group will visit Memphis, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Toronto, New York, Boston, Louisville and St. Louis. All non-festival shows will feature support by Fly Golden Eagle, and Apache Relay will appear as an opener at the Nashville concert.
This follows a previously announced summer tour that will run from July 28 (an appearance at the Newport Folk Festival) to August 16 (in San Diego). In the middle of that run, the band will appear for two nights along with Neil Young & Crazy Horse at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado August 5-6.
Additionally, the band has announced that they make an appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on August 13. The group recently performed their song “Be Mine” on “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.”
The band is spending an extended time on the road supporting their debut album, Boys & Girls, which was released amid much hype for the band back in April. The album debuted at number 16 on the Billboard 200 albums chart and eventually peaked at the number eight position on the chart.
The band formed in northern Alabama in 2009, and began to receive attention from the mainstream press with the release of a self-titled EP last year. They quickly began to attract widespread attention over the following year, playing bigger and more prominent venues. This summer, they played a closing set during the first night of Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival.