The return of AmericanaFest after a difficult year off in 2020 is cause for celebration, and WMOT Roots Radio is here for it, presenting three afternoons of live music, including one of the most talent-packed Wired In sessions so far.
It marks another year of WMOT partnership with World Cafe and NPR Music, and it also represents a debut of this year’s coolest new Nashville music venue, Eastside Bowl in Madison at 1508 Gallatin Pike S.
It starts at noon Wednesday, Sept. 22, with Wired In, open to WMOT members, their guests and AmericanaFest badge and wristband holders. Doors open at 11 a.m.
Grammy Award-winning Aoife O’Donovan takes the stage at noon with her luminous voice and songs from a 20-year career that dates back to the innovative Crooked Still. Nashville-based bluesman and super-producer Colin Linden performs at 1 p.m., followed by Natalie Hemby at 2. Hemby is back to her solo artist ways with the new album “Pins and Needles” after her star turn with the Highwomen.
The AmericanaFest Day Stage presented by WMOT, NPR Music and World Cafe, kicks off on Friday, Sept. 24, with a special festival edition of World Cafe for WXPN, hosted by WMOT’s program director Jessie Scott, with breakout roots country singer and songwriter Sierra Ferrell. Ferrell’s moving, old-world voice and gypsy textures burst out of her Rounder Records debut “Long Time Coming.”
Then it’s live music from noon to 5 p.m. with: Austin’s pink paisley, guitar-slinging singer and songwriter Sue Foley (noon), Music Row songwriting standout and country storyteller Brandy Clark (1 p.m.), Clarksdale, Mississippi, phenomenon and award-magnet blues youngster Christone “Kingfish” Ingram (2 p.m.), feisty Canadian folk/grass ensemble The Dead South (3 p.m.) and the new star power vocal duo of Jade Jackson and Aubrey Sellers (4 p.m.).
The music picks back up at Eastside Bowl on Saturday, Sept. 25, with veteran musicians Bonnie and Elenor as The Whitmore Sisters rolling out their debut music (noon), Texas honky-tonker Jason Eady (1 p.m.), Kentucky storyteller and activist S.G. Goodman (2 p.m.), wry songwriting veteran and new Nashvillian Hayes Carll (3 p.m.) and breakout Oh Boy Records folk singer Tré Burt (4 p.m.).
The performances will air live on WMOT 89.5 FM and WMOT.org as well as a video stream at livesessions.npr.org.
Guests should note the festival-wide health and safety policy, which will be in effect for WMOT’s day stage. Entry is dependent on:
- Proof of full vaccination, with final dose at least 14 days prior to Sept. 22, or a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours must be presented to enter any official AmericanaFest-produced event.
- Based on the latest recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we encourage all attendees to wear masks in indoor spaces regardless of vaccination status.