Bluegrass Festival Artists
Bluegrass & Folk Music
Twin Kennedy, comprised of West Coast sisters Carli and Julie Kennedy, have been making music together since they could talk. Born and raised in the small town of Powell River, Canada, Twin Kennedy grew up perfecting their harmonies and performances, while making their name known in their community as a family band. Growing up in a musically infused family, it's no surprise Twin Kennedy crafted their sound through a unique fusion of their background in country, folk, and jazz. After years of classical training, including attaining their Bachelors Degrees in Music Performance from the University of Victoria, they have found their home in country music.
With Carli on vocals & guitar, and Julie on vocals & violin, these sisters made a splash in the Canadian music scene with their 2015 debut as Twin Kennedy. Since then, they have performed at Canadian Music Week, Canada Place, Sunfest, Rockin’ River Music Festival, Vancouver Island Exhibition, the Vancouver Olympics, and the Live at Heart Festival in Sweden. Twin Kennedy has received 10 BCCMA Award nominations since 2012 and dozens of other awards, and most recently, Twin Kennedy was nominated for Roots/Canadiana Group of the Year at the 2016 BCCMAs. They currently split their time between their home in Victoria, BC and Nashville, TN. With an album launch and two cross-country tours in the books, the past two years have seen a transformation for the Kennedy sisters. Country music has found its newest sweethearts in Twin Kennedy!
JEFF BROWN & STILL LONESOME
Jeff Brown & Still Lonesome consists of Jeff Brown, Austin Brown, Nick Goad, Mitch Walker, & Rod Smith.Jeff began playing music at the age of 9 and hasn't slowed down since. He & his brother formed the Richlands Bluegrass Boys, where he played alongside Blue Highway's Wayne Taylor. In 1993, Jeff went to work for the legendary Larry Sparks as bass player and tenor singer, where he was a Lonesome Rambler until 1996. Jeff has performed on many famous stages including the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, TN, and performed on the television shows Austin City Limits in Austin TX and Song of the Mountains on PBS. While performing with Sparks in Hiltons, VA, Jeff was ask to play bass for Johnny Cash and his wife June Carter Cash. He continued playing various dates and helping out on multiple recording projects before stepping out to front his current band, Jeff Brown & Still Lonesome. Jeff also toured with The Charlie Sizemore Band, and has filled in with Blue Highway, Dr. Ralph Stanley & the Clinch Mountain Boys, and Jesse McReynolds. Jeff Brown is very well known in the bluegrass circuit & he continues to be very active in furthering bluegrass music.
Austin Brown has been playing guitar and bass since age 3, and his many music influences include Ralph Stanley and Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out. Nick Goad is a native of Stuart, VA and began playing guitar at the age of 9 and mandolin at 12. He has been recognized as Best All Around Performer and 1st Place Mandolin at the Galax Old Time Fiddler's Convention in Galax, VA. Mitch Walker, from Raleigh, N. C. graduated from ETSU with two Bachelor of Arts degrees in Bluegrass and Economics. He has been playing banjo since age 13, and has toured with The James King Band and most recently with Audie Blaylock and Redline. Rod Smith from Belfy, KY joins the band on Dobro & vocals. He has played with Dismal Pike, The Timmy Cline Band, Bits and Pieces, Ernie Thacker and Rt 23, and Mike Bentley Cumberland Gap Connection.
AMANDA COOK & KENNESAW RIDGE
Amanda Cook hails from Jay, FL and acquired her love of bluegrass from her father. She self-released her first solo album, "One Stop Along the Road," in 2013, which brought her great regional attention. Amanda officially signed with Mountain Fever Records in 2017 and recorded the album "Deep Water." With her mix of Traditional & Contemporary Bluegrass, Amanda brings a light-hearted, down to earth style that creates an undeniably strong connection with her audience.
Carolyne VanLierop of Blountstown, FL plays 5-string banjo and has been performing in the bluegrass scene for several years. She is an inaugural member of Amanda Cook’s band. Joshua Faul of Gulfport, MS plays bass and has experience performing many different genres of music. He joined Amanda’s band in summer of 2017. Greg Jones from Mt Airy, NC takes great pride in being born and raised in a bluegrass & old time community. He has played mandolin since age 15 and has performed with many notable bluegrass bands. George Mason, an Arkansas native, began playing fiddle at age 8. He has performed and toured with many Grand Ole Opry stars, and joined Amanda in summer 2016.
Amanda Cook’s newest album, "Deep Water," is releasing November 3, 2017.
The band is comprised of Jesse Turner on vocals & acoustic guitar, James Sanders on vocals & bass, Wayne Marlow on vocals & mandolin, Damion Kidd on resonator guitar, and Mike Broadway on banjo. Jesse Turner & his friends got together in October 2015 to form BoomTown, and shortly after took first place in the Loretta Lynn Pickin’ Jamboree. Since then, they have performed in many venues and continued to learn with each new experience. All but one of the band’s musicians are from north Alabama, and the exception is from Tennessee. Their sound can be described as "bluegrass with a twist." This group of buddies have quickly found their place in the bluegrass scene, and have great things in the works!
UNCLE SHUFFELO & HIS HAINT HOLLOW HOOTENANNY
Bluegrass/Hillbilly Music Show
Uncle Shuffelo and His Haint Hollow Hootenanny is a seven-piece string band from Rover, TN. Uncle Shuffelo aka Keith Williams does banjo, tenor banjo & vocals. Austin Derryberry plays fiddle, banjo, banjo uke, guitar, vocals, & harmonica; Brian Derryberry does upright bass & vocals, while Conner Derryberry does banjo, bones, spoons, & vocals. Emma Jean Williams is on vocals, autoharp & jug, Megan Williams is on vocals, washboard & kazoo, and Courtney Williams does vocals, guitar, banjo uke, & tuba. These high-energy folks have an album under their belt, competed in multiple band championships, and been awarded dozens of honors since 2013. Their mission is to relieve stress, give good vibes, and promote the awesomeness of old-time music!
FRANCES MOONEY & FONTANNA SUNSET
Frances Mooney of Georgia is an Atlanta Country Music Hall of Famer who has performed with many distinguished bluegrass artists for over 40 years. She first reached acclaim performing with The Bluegrass Generation, and in 1978 formed the band Cherokee Rose, one of the first all-female bands to join the bluegrass circuit. She put together another band, Indian Summer, in 1981 and won multiple awards throughout the several years they performed. Frances’s current band, Fontanna Sunset, was formed in 1998 with band leader Mooney on vocals and bass. Band members Joe Kimsey plays banjo, Rickey Rakestraw does guitar & vocals, and Brian Morgan rounds out the group with mandolin & vocals. Their sound can be described as a blend of traditional and creative, and influences of rock & roll and gospel can be found in their music’s driving rhythms and powerful vocals.
BLUE HOLLER BAND
Blue Holler got its start at Whigham School near Cairo, Georgia, in the fall of 2004 and is South Georgia & North Florida’s award winning premier acoustic band, performing modern, contemporary, jazz-influenced, traditional gospel bluegrass music. Since 2004, these multi-talented young men have honed their musical skills performing at many venues in Georgia, Florida, and Alabama. Blue Holler’s instrumental perfection, combined with impressive family-style harmonies, is unforgettable. Entertaining audiences with a mixture of original and cover material, the band always holds the audience’s interest by performing a variety of musical styles. Utilizing their impressive song writing skills, the band composes and performs original tunes loved by fans. Blue Holler consists of Brandon Taylor on guitar/mandolin & vocals, Skylar Gandy on fiddle/guitar & vocals, Brandon Gandy playing banjo/guitar & vocals, and multi-instrumentalist Seabie Ewer on bass & vocals.
THE WEAVER BELIEVER BAND
The Weaver Believer Band is a 7-member family band from Sautee Nacoochee, GA. Formerly known as the Weaver Believer Survival Revival, the band currently consists of siblings Michelle (lead vocals & rhythm guitar), Tom (percussion), Sam (banjo, fiddle, mandolin/vocals), Steve (lead guitar/vocals), Michael (bass/vocals), Sarah (fiddle/vocals) and Jonathan (rhythm guitar & vocals) ~ ages 30 16. After 19 years in the band, they’ve developed a high-energy, fast tempo style of Country Christian with a Bluegrass Twist. They are best known for their high energy performance, as well as tight family harmony vocals. The Weaver Believer Band tours full time nationwide on a 40-foot tour bus, performing in nearly 200 concerts a year.
THE WISEMAN BROTHERS
Growing up in the mountains of Western North Carolina, Donovan & Devon Wiseman were exposed to traditional Bluegrass, Country, and Gospel Music early in life. These up-and-coming musicians hope to preserve the sound of traditional bluegrass music. Donovan’s smooth vocals & strong guitar solos, coupled with the Scruggs style banjo playing and tenor singing of his older brother Devon, make for a nostalgic, traditional sound. The Wiseman Brothers are joined by mandolin virtuoso Matthew Mundy, who adds flare with his hot licks and baritone vocals. Jeff Wright rounds out the music with his upright bass skills. The Wiseman Brothers hope to give listeners a taste of traditional Bluegrass Music and allow this music to live on for future generations to enjoy!
Modern Folk Music
Erin Martone has been playing live and local in Panama City since 2013 and loves acoustic, indie, and folk music. She plays guitar & ukulele, and she released an album "Outside the Lines" in 2015 and is semi active on her YouTube channel. For more information on Erin and future dates, please like her Facebook page. She is very excited to be playing the Folk and Bluegrass festival for the third year in a row!
TOMMY JACKSON & ROCKY TOP REVUE
Square Dance Team
The Rocky Top Revue Square Dance Team from Nashville, TN has been wowing audiences in the southeast for over three decades. The team has earned countless honors including 12 state championships, appearances at the Grand Ole Opry, a lifetime invitation to the International Bluegrass Music Association Awards, and performing at the 1998 Sugar Bowl half time show. Known for their energy and versatility, their performances can include country line, hip hop, and ballroom dance. The team includes founder Tommy Jackson, Robyn Durdin, Kory Posey, Kelsey Jones, Tiffany Davis, Mathew Campbell, Jennifer Campbell, Katie Huntley, Woody Stephenson, and Chris Stewart. While they love to entertain, the true passion of the Rocky Top Revue is preserving and sharing their traditional form of dance.