Old Settler’s Music Festival: Friday Preview

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Wakarusa 2009: Friday

There’s a slight baby-shaped pallor hanging over the Friday festivities at Old Settler’s Music Fest. News of the Avett Brothers cancellation will surely be forgotten after a day of enjoying incredible music, company, and weather though. Well, maybe not forgotten, but at least forgiven. I kid, of course, as I’m happy to be a fan of a band that puts family before paydays. The rest of the existing Friday lineup is enough, including sets from Langhorne Slim, Avett-replacements Grupo Fantasma, and the Emmit-Nershi Band.

: Friday 4:00-5:15 PM – Green Mountain Grass @ the Bluebonnet Stage

These boys from Austin are Old Settler’s vets, having performed every year of the fest since 2006. They’re also the best damn jamgrass band in the state. Or as they prefer, the best “gonzograss” band in the world. Don’t be surprised by smoking fiddlework, the swirling dance mob that forms, and the possibility of some bluegrass Rage Against the Machine. Yup

: Friday 5:45-7:00 PM – Emmitt-Nershi Band @ the Hill Country Stage

It’s hard to distinguish yourself as a solo member of bands like Leftover Salmon and String Cheese Incident, but Drew Emmitt and Bill Nershi make it look easy. The Emmitt-Nershi band lets Bill scratch his bluegrass itch till it bleeds and the results make you wish that he was a hemophiliac. The possibility of a few SCI gems loom large, and their original material and expert picking make this set a can’t miss.

: Friday 7:15-8:15 PM – Audie Blaylock and Redline @ the Hill Country Stage

BlueGospellllllll!!!!! Yeah, having been raised singing these songs means I may just have a goddamned religious experience from 7:15-8:15 on Friday. I’m gonna go ahead and count it as my Easter service too, so BYOcommunion.

: Friday 8:15-10:00 PM – Langhorne Slim @ the Hill Country Stage

Langhorne Slim sprang from the fertile musical grounds of Brooklyn around 5 years ago, but his music already feels like the soundtrack to a big part of my life. “A bird with clipped wings still sings but can no longer fly.” Indeed. Any disappointed fans of the Avett Brothers who are unfamiliar with Langhorne’s hard-to-classify music better attend this set. It’s the next best thing at the fest that’ll suit your tastes, trust me.

: Friday 9:45-11:00 PM – Jimmie Dale Gilmore@ the Bluebonnet Stage

Jimmie Dale Gilmore founded The Flatlanders with fellow legends Joe Ely and Bruce Hancock back in 1972, and since then has amassed a catalog that rivals the greats of Texas. He also covers Townes Van Zandt better than anyone in the world (sorry Steve Earle) and was in the freakin’ Big Lebowski. Come see some timeless country and get your heart broken.

: Friday 10:30-dawn(?) – Grupo Fantasma @ the Hill Country Stage

Latin dance party! I’m ready, and think this will actually be an incredible way to spend our Friday night: dancing until our dirt-caked bare feet bleed happiness. If you’re gonna replace one of my favorite bands, replacing them with an ass-shaking good time is pretty damn genius. Can’t wait.

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