The 2nd annual 2016 Pilgrimage Music & Cultural Festival is returning to The Park at Harlinsdale in Franklin, TN on September 24 and 25, 2016. This years line-up exceed the expectations of last years attendees. The inaugural festival had bands spanning many genres, from bluegrass to country to rock, drawing a wide expanse of listeners from across the globe. This year is no different. They’ve amassed even more names making it almost impossible to decide who you should take a chance on. Set times are close together and time is short.
As usual, I’m here to help. I’ve highlighted five acts you can’t miss at this year’s Pilgrimage. Check them out below in no particular order.
The Strumbellas have trail blazed their way through 2016 since the release of their critically acclaimed, chart topping, foot stomping single, ‘Spirits’, hit the airwaves in January. Not only did ‘Spirits’ reach #1 on the Alternative Radio Chart and Billboard Alternative Songs Chart, the track also achieved #1 in Italy (double platinum), #1 in Canada (platinum), is about to crack the top #10 in Germany (gold), and is one of the top 10 most streamed Rock songs of 2016 worldwide. But outside of all these accomplishments they pack stages across the country making new fans at each stop. It was a random Pandora show in Nashville that put them on my radar, a combination of their addictive energy and unforgettable melodies got me obsessed.
CATCH THEM: Saturday at 12:30 PM
The Blackfoot Gypsies
One of Nashville’s most vibrant rock bands, the Gypsies are known for their electric, high energy rock style. An incredible mix of classic rock and bluegrass southernality, they bring something completely unique to the table in both sound and style. This is their first year at Pilgrimage, and one of their first years on the festival circuit. If you’re looking for some serious rock with a truly vintage vibe, be sure to catch their set.
CATCH THEM: Saturday at 3:45 PM
Established in 2011, The Suffers’ lineup was curated by bassist Adam Castaneda and vocalist/keyboardist Pat Kelly. Eventually they brought on trumpet player Jon Durbin, trombonist Michael Razo,guitarist Kevin Bernier, percussionist Jose “Chapy” Luna, and drummer/vocalist Nick Zamora. Jazz saxophonist Cory Wilson and guitarist/vocalist Alex Zamora. Filling out an ample rhythm section with some truly exceptional players. Meanwhile, frontwoman Kam Franklin topped off the group with soaring vocals and insatiable energy. The layers of sounds, inspired by traditional jazz and blues rhythms, pack a powerful punch that’s impossible to ignore. One time seeing them live will change the face of big band ensembles for you, possibly forever.
This dynamic brother and sister duo comprised of Natalie (vocalist/songwriter) and Elliot Bergman (vocalist/multi-instrumentalist) are fearless in the pursuit of new sounds and ideologies. They pull from the sounds and scenes of their various life experiences. Moments lived everywhere from their native Chicago to Los Angeles and Nashville. They’ll bring an entirely different sound to the rootsy festival. Full of bombastic beats and wandering melodies with a slick pop aesthetic. They’re fresh and fun in a way that will have you stomping and clapping along to every track.
CATCH THEM: Saturday at 1:30 PM
The current darling of Country Music will take Pilgrimage by storm on Saturday, Sunday 25th. Bringing her old school vibes and honest storytelling to the stage for fans, old and new. The longtime Nashville local has carved her name in stages across our city, finding new ways to tell old stories. She provides an emotional backdrop to our lives in the form of distinct melodies and memorable stories. 2016 has been a breakthrough year for her, her debut major label album Midwest Farmer’s Daughter seeing her gaining radio play on Americana stations. Her live show traveling everywhere from CMA Fest to Bumbershoot — and now Pilgrimage.
CATCH HER: Sunday at 3:30 PM
For the full line-up and schedule, head over to the official website for Pilgrimage Music & Culture Festival. Let me know who you want to check out in the comments below!