Country music is taking on a pronounced presence at the 42nd edition of the Sacramento Music Festival (May 22-25), which has announced much of its upcoming schedule.
In addition to perennial favorites such as Tower of Power and Malo, and ’90s hitmakers Everclear, Eve 6 and Shawn Mullins, headliners include Gloriana, past winner of the American Music Awards’ breakthrough artist of the year and the Academy of Country Music Awards’ top new vocal group.
Other country performers include the Dave Russell Band, the Chris Gardener Band, Brodie Stewart and Nickel Slots.
Organizers have planned more than 300 sets for the Memorial Day weekend event.
Originally known as the Old Sacramento Dixieland Jazz Jubilee, the festival changed its name in 2012 and expanded its offerings to include rock, country, gospel, soul, R&B, bluegrass and more. Concerts take place in Old Sacramento and throughout the city’s downtown.
“The Sacramento Music Festival offers a truly unique concert experience that the whole family can agree on,” said Mike Testa, chief operating officer of the Sacramento Convention and Visitors Bureau, which helps to organize the event. “If you’re coming out to celebrate the festival’s jazz history or to hear a band’s Top 40 hit, there’s truly something for everyone.”
The fest’s 2014 offerings included Collective Soul and Meschiya Lake and the Lil’ Big Horns, winner of the Big Easy Music Awards winner for best traditional jazz band. The 2015 jazz lineup includes acts such as Sister Swing, the Dixie Company, Vivian Lee and Stephanie Trick.
The festival continues to refine its strategy in a changing musical landscape, but its evolution hasn’t been without wrinkles. Last August, the Sacramento Traditional Jazz Society, the main presenter of the festival, issued an emergency plea to members and volunteers, citing a budget shortfall in its running of the 2014 event and asking for $80,000 to operate through the end of year. The society later said the festival made a $42,000 profit.
Early discounted passes are now available at sacmusicfest.com (single days tickets range from $39-$45; an all-event pass costs $110). Full-price tickets and passes will be available throughout the festival.
The 2015 lineup includes:
Tower of Power
The Dave Russell Band
The Chris Gardner Band
Joy & Madness
Mick Martin & the Blues Rockers
Lisa Haley & the Zydecats
Ray “Catfish” Copeland
Wonder Bread 5
Todd Morgan & the Emblems
Nathan Owens Band
Tom Rigney & Flambeau
James Garner’s Cash Tribute
High Sierra Jazz Band
The Royal Society Orchestra