Who says you can’t get anything for free?
Okay, so it’s not free for Warren Hellman. But thanks to his pile of money and musical obsession, “Hardly Strictly Bluegrass” is FREE to everyone else in San Francisco and beyond.
On October 27th, 2001, the free “Hardly Strictly Bluegrass” started it’s first year in Golden Gate Park.
The dates for it’s 8th year will be October 3rd-5th, 2008. It’s anticipated to have nearly 70 acts and approximately 100,000 spectators… all for free.
When I arrived in San Francisco 8 years ago, I sought out a variety of events to get to know my new home. Normally, I wouldn’t imagine myself going to something “Bluegrass”-related. (Let’s just say “Slayer” is one of my favorite bands.) But, I was in the park, it was a nice day, and there was some free music. A few hours later, I was surprised to say it was a great day and I found I actually liked Bluegrass!
The same time in 2002 , I received a call from a former co-worker from Boston, then living in LA. He was coming up to this brand-new festival to see Gillian Welch. So, I headed out to the festival intentionally this time.
As the new line-up for number 8 was announced recently, I realized I had gone every year since it’s birth. In that time, a lot has changed, my first ‘Bluegrass’ companion went back to Boston. In the past 8 years, my family has grown and now my husband and chihuahua come to the festival with me. And I actually have a few Gillian Welch albums in my iPod now!
A sunny day in the park broadened my musical horizons forever. And this year, the sunny day in the park is meeting me half-way, featuring one of my long-time favorites.
After a collaborative album with Alison Krauss came out late last year, I’d been crossing my fingers… and my wish has come true!
Robert Plant is playing at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 8!
Below is a partial list of performers.
It’s going to be a great year!
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss feat. T-Bone Burnett
Loudon Wainwright III
Bonnie Prince Billie
Asleep at the Wheel
Mike Farris & The Roseland Rythm Revue
The Del McCoury Band
Robert Earl Keen
Jerry Jeff Walker
The Desert Rose Band