Greetings from Shambylvania! As the days continue to get longer and warmer, all of us here in Shambylvania are celebrating festival season, our favorite time of the year.
This past weekend we made our Merlefest debut and Wilkesboro welcomed us with open arms. The first set was a high energy affair in the dance tent. We are partial to a good dance tent and this one certainly did not disappoint. A poll of the crowd showed a nice mix of new faces and returning friends.
The day continued on with a scorcher on the Americana stage. The sun was shining on us for the whole set, the ultimate spotlight. We managed to play all of the new songs and plenty of old hits throughout the two sets. It has been exciting to mix the new ones into the catalogue. Next was the midnight jam hosted by Chatham County Line. This was a fitting end to the night, since CCL was the first band Ellis ever saw, at the Pourhouse, a venue we now play often (next on May 17th with Town Mountain). This all-star event included Molly Tuttle, Scythian, Shane Hennessy, Jim Lauderdale and more. We brought some jazz to the festival with a rendition of “On The Sunny Side of the Street.” We look forward to returning in the future.
This weekend is Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival of Music & Dance in Pittsboro, NC, and we’re honored to return for our fourth Spring in a row and sixth time overall! This is a consistently excellent festival that with a varied lineup that mixes international artists with many of our favorite local bands. We will be in the dance tent on Friday, May 3rd at 8:30. This one of our favorite crowds of the year, and this set in particular always comes up in conversations throughout the year. We have some extra special surprises in store this year
Sandwiched between our two Shakori sets is our first visit to Hertford, NC for Riverbash. This is a free festival celebrating the history and riverfront culture of Perquiman County. There will be food, music, boat rides, and who knows what else!?
On Sunday we will be making our main stage debut along with Katharine Whalen, our dear pal and founding Squirrel Nut Zipper. We will do a mix of Shambles and Zippers favorites, and the set will also feature reeds phenom and local legend Tim Smith. That set starts at 4:30, don’t miss it!
The run continues May 10 in Greenville, SC for Artisphere Festival. This is a long running art, music, and food festival that we can’t wait to visit for the first time. We’re on the main stage at 5:30. The next night we’ll head back across the state line to ISIS Restaurant and Music Hall in Asheville, NC. The sound and the food are top notch, and this will be our third time back!
We’ll see you out there, and stay tuned for news on the vinyl release and new tour dates!