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Initial lineup for MerleFest 2018 announced

MerlesFest 2017 (WGHP)

WILKESBORO, N.C. — The initial lineup for MerleFest 2018 was announced Tuesday morning.

The festival takes place on the campus of Wilkes Community College and is set to include big-name guests such as Kris Kristofferson, Jamey Johnson, Robert Earl Keen, The Devil Makes Three, Balsam Range and the Atlanta Pops Orchestra Ensemble, “Mission Temple Fireworks Revival” featuring Paul Thorn and Band, the Blind Boys of Alabama and the McCrary Sisters.

“Today, MerleFest is proud to announce more than 75 artists who are part of the festival’s 2018 lineup, commemorating the 31st year of the festival,” said MerleFest Artist Relations Manager Steve Johnson. “The initial lineup reflects the musical diversity and quality of performers who are the hallmark of the festival.”

The initial lineup includes:

Aaron Burdett, Alberti Flea Circus, Andrew Collins Trio, Andy May, Ari Eisinger, Ashley Heath and Her Heathens, Banknotes, Bill Mathis, Bob Hill, Bryan Sutton, Brynmor, Cane Mill Road, Cardboard Fox, Carol Rifkin, Jeanette Queen, Mark Queen, Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer, Charles Welch, Cicada Rhythm, David Holt and Josh Goforth, Dead Horses, Donna the Buffalo, Doolin, Elephant Sessions, Erin Harpe, Flatland Harmony Experiment, Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen, Fireside Collective, Gunner & Smith, Hannah Shira Naiman, Happy Traum, Horsemen Let’s Ride, Hubby Jenkins, Hummingbird Crossing, Jack Lawrence, Jayme Stone’s Folklife, Jeanette Williams Band, Jeff Little Trio, Jeffrey Foucault, Jody Carroll, Joe Mullins and the Radio Ramblers, Joe Smothers, Junior Appalachian Musicians Band, Laura Boosinger & The Midnight Plowboys, Lauren and Lane, Lindsay Lou, Lillian Chase, The Lonesome Ace Stringband, Lori King and Junction 63, Mark Bumgarner, Mike Aiken Band, Mitch Greenhill, My Bubba, The Note Ropers, Nu-Blu, Pete & Joan Wernick, Peter Rowan, Piper Jones, The Po Ramblin’ Boys, Richard Ray Farrell, Richie and Rosie, Rob Ickes & Trey Hensley, Robin and Linda Williams, Rosie & the Riveters, Roy Book Binder, Sam Bush Band, Sarah Jane Scouten, Savannah Smith and Southern Soul, Scythian, Sideline, Smitty and the JumpStarters, Steve and Ruth Smith, String Madness, T. Michael Coleman Band, Ted Olson, Tennessee Jed Fisher, Terry Baucom’s Dukes of Drive, The Barefoot Movement, The BattleAxe Band, The East Pointers, The Hackwells, The InterACTive Theatre of Jef, The Kruger Brothers, The Lang Sisters, The Local Boys, The Lonely Heartstring Band, The Mastersons, The Midatlantic, The New River Drifters, The Waybacks, The Wildmans, Susana and Timmy Abell, Tony Williamson Band, Unspoken Tradition, Virginia Hollow, The Way Down Wanderers, Wayland, Wayne Henderson, Wesley Bright & The Honeytones, and Whitewater Bluegrass Company.

MerlesFest, which was founded by Doc Watson, will be held April 26-29.

Tickets for next year’s festival go on sale Tuesday.

For more information, visit Merlefest.org.