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Strictly Bluegrass

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Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, a free festival, runs through Sunday in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco.

This afternoon, there is a tribute to Woody Guthrie from 1 to 4 pm.

Saturday, it will run from 11 am to 7 pm. Just a few of the performers include Dave Alvin, Gillian Welch, Ricky Skaggs, Greg Brown, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Joe Ely, and Steve Earle.

Sunday is also from 11 to 7 and performers include Hazel Dickens, Willie Nelson, and Emmylou Harris.

Brad Kava writes that financier Warren Hellman who pays for the fest is the Mark Cuban of Bluegrass music.

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About Steve Rhodes

  • BJ

    Cool – thanks for putting that up. I’ve been planning to go for most of the day Sat. and Willie and Emmylou Sun. I live out by the park, so it’s an easy trip.

    In the past, the sound for this festival has been pretty crappy, but that lineup is pretty hard to beat. And the price is right. Hopefully they’ll take care of the sound problems this year.

    I’ll post a review if I can. And look forward to your appraisal.

  • Steve Vender

    Hardly Strictly Bluegrass is, without a doubt, a great festival full of incredible talent. The only problem is that there’s also an incredible number of people who go to the festival for reasons other than to hear the music. For two years now the music has been spoiled for me by braindeads all around me, talking on their cell phones, talking to other braindeads, talking, talking, talking. It completely baffles me. I mean, why would you want to go to a festival with a lineup like this only to talk all throughout the show. This year we had the “Yeah, like awesome, dude, really excellant” crowd behind us who talked through three acts about how great the music was, not once shutting up for a moment to actually listen to it. Last year it was the twenty-something braindead who just had to rave loudly on her cell phone about the sugarcane shrimp she had the night before at her favorite Vietnamese restaurant while Nick Lowe was playing. The only way to enjoy this festival is with a backstage pass or to stake out territory right in front of the stage of your choice, where the people who are there to hear the music are sitting. Otherwise, be prepared to be pissed off throughout the afternoon. You could get very stoned, or you could do a valium, too, but aren’t you there to hear the music? Consideration for others is unheard of at this festival, with people standing to block the view of others or sitting in oversize chairs, but then the whole concept of consideration for others and being polite is pretty much gone from this entire country. The only way I’ll get to hear Jimmy Dale Gilmore next year is on a CD in my living room. Sad, but even more so, it really, really pissed me off.

  • I agree that there are some pretty inconsiderate people (if the people complaining about not being able to hear Dolly Parton had shut up, it would have been a bit easier to hear her).

    But I will still go next year because the music is so good.

    You might want to write Warren with your complaint and ask for a friends and family pass for next year.

    I had meant to write about the first day Saturday night, but a friend was in from out of town. I did take a bunch of photos and will post them on flickr.