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Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion Scores Nickel Creek, Margo Price in 2023

Bristol, Va.-Tenn. (Jan. 26, 2023) – Nickel Creek and Margo Price are among the top tier of what’s shaping up to be an eclectic Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion lineup in 2023. The award-winning festival returns to Historic Downtown Bristol, Tenn.-Va. for its 22nd annual event September, 8-10.

Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion lineup graphic.

Other acts included in the initial lineup announcement include Bruce Hornsby & The Noisemakers, Watchhouse, The Mavericks, 49 Winchester, Larkin Poe, Allison Russell, Amythyst Kiah, and Walderado, with more artists to be announced in the spring.

Bristol Rhythm boasts a super-sized lineup each year and offers more than a dozen outdoor stages and indoor venues along State Street, where Tennessee meets Virginia. Established to honor the legacy of producer Ralph Peer’s 1927 Bristol Sessions, which gave us the first recordings of the Carter Family and Jimmie Rodgers, Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion is to roots music what Peer was to country – a tastemaker. Just as the 1927 Bristol Sessions introduced the world to those legendary performers, the festival has a reputation of also catching stars on the rise.

Those seminal recordings that created the “Big Bang” of country music continue to influence a wide range of genres and you’ll find a diverse sampling of sounds at Bristol Rhythm – from indie rock and cow punk to Piedmont blues and traditional bluegrass. As more acts are added to the bill in 2023, you may just glimpse a future festival headliner among the middle or lower tiers of the roster.

Weekend passes to Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, along with a limited number of VIP packages, are on sale now at BristolRhythm.com.

49 Winchester, VIP Experiences at Bristol Rhythm 2023

Bristol, Tenn./Va. (Nov. 25, 2022) – The Birthplace of Country Music (BCM) has announced 49 Winchester, one of the hottest acts to emerge from Southwest Virginia, will perform at its 22nd annual Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival in 2023.

“49 Winchester embodies the tremendous wealth of musical talent that resides in our region,” said Leah Ross, BCM executive director of advancement. “We are so proud of the band’s accomplishments and are thrilled to announce they’ll return to the Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion lineup next year.”

In the past, 49 Winchester front man Isaac Gibson has stated that performing at the festival was a major goal when the group first formed.

Hailing from Russell Co., Va., 49 Winchester is taking the national music scene by storm with the critically-acclaimed, New West Records release Fortune Favors The Bold, the band’s fourth album. 49 has been selling out venues across the country, made their network tv debut on CBS’s The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, and took to the stages of the Grand Ole Opry and Ryman Auditorium in support of Turnpike Troubadours and Whiskey Myers. Most recently the band’s song “Last Call” was featured in an episode of the Paramount Network’s Yellowstone starring Kevin Costner. In April the band will return to the Opry and debut at California’s Stagecoach Festival with headliners Luke Bryan, Kane Brown, and Chris Stapleton.

Upon announcing the band’s upcoming performance at Paramount Bristol, the concert sold out while still in pre-sale.

Though 49 Winchester is the only Bristol Rhythm 2023 act to be revealed at this time – more of the festival lineup will be announced in the new year – BCM disclosed a few exclusive opportunities for festival goers.

“We’re also excited to offer a limited number of premium, all-inclusive VIP festival packages for fans that include experiences like yurt ‘glamping’ and accommodations at The Bristol Hotel or The Sessions Hotel, meet and greets with artists, and much more,” said Ross.

Prices for VIP experiences for two people range from $1,500 to $3,500. Each package includes accommodations (hotel or camping), weekend passes to Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, tickets to the pre-festival kick-off concert, meet-and-greets with festival artists, tickets to tour the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, and more.

Weekend passes to the 22nd annual Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival, slated for Sept. 8-10, 2023, are available for $100 (plus tax/fees) through Cyber Monday, Nov. 28; it is the lowest price available all year. The price of weekend passes increases to $120 (plus tax/fees) on Tuesday, Nov. 29 through Dec. 31, 2022. Prices go up to $140 (plus tax/fees) on Jan. 1, 2023. Bristol Rhythm 2023 weekend passes and exclusive VIP experiences are on sale now at BristolRhythm.com.

Bristol Rhythm 2022 Pre-Festival Kick-Off Concert featuring The Larry Keel Experience Sept. 8

Bristol, Tenn./Va. (August 10, 2022) – You’re invited to “raise the rooftop” with The Larry Keel Experience, Woody Woodworth & The Piners, and Old Line Skiffle Combo during the Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion pre-festival kick-off show at Lumac Rooftop Bar above The Bristol Hotel in Downtown Bristol starting at 5:30 p.m., Sept. 8. The concert is presented by the Birthplace of Country Music (BCM) with special thanks to The Bristol Hotel, Rabbit Hole Distillery and Virginia is for Lovers for sponsoring this special event.

“Lumac is a great destination for live music and dining in Downtown Bristol,” said Leah Ross, BCM executive director of advancement, the parent nonprofit of the annual Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival. “We’re thrilled to partner with our friends at The Bristol Hotel to kick off the festival with these wonderful artists in such a beautiful venue.”

“The Bristol Hotel enjoys a great partnership with the Birthplace of Country Music that continues to grow,” said Sean Copley, general manager of The Bristol Hotel. “We’re very proud to be part of the excitement of the festival and to help kick-off the main event at Lumac, especially as Bristol celebrates the 95th Anniversary of the 1927 Bristol Sessions.”

Larry Keel is an award-winning and innovative flat-picking guitarist and singer-songwriter who has brought the flat-picking form to its highest level of sophistication and sonic power. As a composer and singer, Keel integrates raw honesty and charming grit to form a unique brand of music he calls “experimental folk.” He has appeared on over 20 albums, 12 of which he produced, and has written songs that have been recorded and performed by distinguished artists including GRAMMY Award-winners Del McCoury and The Infamous Stringdusters. Keel has collaborated and continues to merge creative forces with some of the greatest artists in modern roots music, including Tyler Childers, Billy Strings, Al DiMeola, Tony Rice, Keller Williams and Sam Bush, to name a few.

Hailing from Richmond, Virginia, Woody Woodworth & The Piners are part of the newest revival of country music in Virginia. Established in 2016, The Piners are named for the bygone expression “to pine,” meaning a deep longing for something or someone. Influenced by Virginia’s deep musical history and Appalachian culture, Woody Woodworth & The Piners fuse storytelling with country, bluegrass, and rock ‘n’ roll to create a sound that can be described as Appalachian alt-country with a steady shot of Southern rock.

Members of Old Line Skiffle Combo consider Bristol their second home. The Maryland-based sextet first performed at Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion in 2004 and was an event staple for many years. The group amicably parted ways after their final festival performance as a band in 2015. Not missing a beat, the OLSC is reuniting its original members for a special, pre-festival kick-off show for Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion and bringing a fine batch of their signature high-energy, non-stop locomotive sounds that combine their love of old-timey music mixed with hot jazz, western swing, vaudeville, rockabilly and the general zaniness of the 1920s and 1930s, so fitting as part of the 95th Anniversary of the 1927 Bristol Sessions festivities.

Tickets to the Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion Festival Kick-off Concert at Lumac Rooftop Bar above The Bristol Hotel are on sale now for $25. To purchase, visit the Events page at BirthplaceOfCountryMusic.org. Weekend and single day passes to Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, to be held Sept. 9-11 in Historic Downtown Bristol, are sold separately at BristolRhythm.com. For more information about The Bristol Hotel and to book a room, visit BristolHotelVa.com.

Bristol Rhythm Green Team/HOKA 5K Plog Aug. 13

Bristol, Tenn./Va. (August 2, 2022) – Join us for a little cardio, community cleanup, and cold brews during the Bristol Rhythm Green Team/HOKA 5K Plog at 9 a.m. EDT, Aug. 13. The Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival’s Green Team is partnering with HOKA, the environmentally-conscious running shoe company, State Street Brewing Company and Mountain Sports, Ltd. to produce the event. Participation is free of charge, but please pre-register online. Food and beer are available for purchase after the run/walk.

A plog is a community and environmentally focused way to exercise by picking up trash and recyclables as you walk/run, helping to call attention to the importance of recycling and keeping our historic downtown clean.

Participants in the Bristol Rhythm Green Team/HOKA 5K Plog will meet at State Street Brewing, located at 801 State Street in Historic Downtown Bristol, Virginia-Tennessee, and will be given the choice of two routes to walk or run.

HOKA and Mountain Sports will be set up with running shoes to demo during the run and to purchase; demo shoe sizes are limited, so get there early to try on. Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion Green Team members will also be there to discuss volunteer opportunities during the festival, to be held September 9-11.

The person who brings back the most trash/recyclables will win a weekend pass to Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion. After the plogging session there will be a raffle and the chance to take home some cool prizes, including a pair of HOKA running shoes.

The San Taco food truck will be on site at 11 a.m. for participants to purchase food, and beers will also be available for purchase at State Street Brewing.

Bristol Rhythm Green Team/HOKA 5k Plog itinerary Aug. 13:

  • 9:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.:
    Arrive at State Street Brewing, pick up route map. Grab a pair of HOKA running shoes to try out during the plog.
  • 9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.:
    5K plogging walk or run. Pick up trash and recyclables along your route.
  • 11:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.:
    Raffle and prizes awarded.
  • 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.:
    Food truck and beer available for purchase.

To register for the Bristol Rhythm Green Team/HOKA 5k Plog visit the Events page at BirthplaceofCountryMusic.org.

Special thanks to Appalachian Chiropractic Wellness Center for their support of the BRRR Green Team!

Bristol Rhythm Volunteer Expo July 23

Bristol, Tenn./Va. (July 19, 2022) – The Birthplace of Country Music (BCM) is ramping up logistics planning for its 21st annual Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival, and they’re asking for your help during the big event. A Volunteer Expo will be held this Saturday, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. July 23, at Anderson Park in Downtown Bristol (421 5th Street, Bristol, TN) to recruit helpers from the community to make this year’s event shine. The Volunteer Expo is free and open to the public. Food and refreshments will be available for purchase from Little Delights Concessions and Sunset Slush. More than 800 volunteers are needed festival weekend.

“Community volunteers are the heart and soul of our organization,” said Leah Ross, BCM executive director of advancement. “They are often the first people visitors see when they get to the festival, and we rely on them to help make Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion run smoothly. The Volunteer Expo is a great opportunity for the community to meet our staff and committee members, ask questions about volunteering at the festival and find their area of interest.”

During the Volunteer Expo attendees may also sign up for shifts they wish to work at Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, to be held Sept. 9-11.

A few of the duties requiring festival volunteers include helping with fencing set-up and tear down, working ticket booths and beverage gardens, manning enter/exit points, parking lot attendants, helping sell festival and artist merchandise, assisting vendors with load-in and load-out, and more. Families and businesses may be accommodated to work specific areas together.

Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion volunteers must be ages 16 and up. Volunteers who are 16 – 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Beverage garden volunteers must be 21 or older.

Volunteers at Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion are asked to work a four-hour shift, but may sign up for more. Volunteers receive one single day pass to the festival for each shift they work and a volunteer t-shirt. Individuals may register for a shift at any time by visiting the festival’s website at BirthplaceOfCountryMusic.com/festival/volunteer. Be sure and check the Volunteer FAQ section on that page for more detailed information including shuttle service for volunteers.

Prior to the festival, volunteers are asked to download the Volunteer app, InitLive, for scheduling, check-in, and more. App information will be sent once volunteer application is approved. For more information about volunteering for Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, e-mail info@birthplaceofcountrymusic.org.

The Wood Brothers, Fantastic Negrito, Jade Bird Coming to Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion 2022

Bristol, Tenn./Va. (March 31, 2022) –  The Wood Brothers, Fantastic Negrito, and Jade Bird are among the third round of artists headlining the 2022 Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival, which takes place Sept. 9-11 in Historic Downtown Bristol, Virginia-Tennessee. Singer-songwriters Ian Noe, Arlo McKinley, and Aaron Lee Tasjan are also part of the 2022 lineup announced today.

“Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion is a celebration of the music that has been passed on to us from across the Appalachian region for generations,” said Leah Ross, Executive Director of Advancement for the Birthplace of Country Music, the parent nonprofit of the festival, the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, and WBCM Radio Bristol. “Our lineup exemplifies the vast influence of that great legacy on the music of today across a wide range of genres.”

Rosanne Cash, JJ Grey & Mofro, Tanya Tucker, Del McCoury Band, and Asleep at the Wheel are among the acts revealed previously in Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion’s multi-event campaign. The final additions to the lineup will be announced in April.

The latest round of artists announced today include the following:

  • The Wood Brothers
  • Fantastic Negrito
  • Jade Bird
  • Ian Noe
  • Arlo McKinley 
  • Aaron Lee Tasjan
  • Jamie McLean Band
  • Riddy Arman
  • Mo Lowda & the Humble
  • Andrew Scotchie & the River Rats
  • Ashley Heath & Her Heathens
  • Jeremy Ivey
  • West King String Band
  • The Judy Chops
  • Paleface
  • ETSU Bluegrass Pride Band
  • Nat Myers
  • Tan & Sober Gentlemen
  • The Dimestore Cowboys
  • Virginia Hollow
  • Florencia & the Feeling
  • Momma Molasses
  • Ron Short & the Possum Playboys
  • A Talent for Mischief
  • Basement Days
In addition to booking a stellar lineup, Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion will observe the 95th anniversary of the 1927 Bristol Sessions – the event in history known as the “big bang” of country music and “the single most important event in the history of country music,” according to Johnny Cash.

Weekend passes to Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion are on sale now for $100, with the price increasing May 1. Artist schedules and single day passes will be released later this summer. To purchase passes and for more information, visit BristolRhythm.com.

Tanya Tucker, Del McCoury Band, Asleep at the Wheel Coming to Bristol Rhythm 2022

Bristol, Tenn./Va. (February 24, 2022) – Tanya Tucker, Del McCoury Band, and Asleep at the Wheel are among the second round of lineup additions headlining the 2022 Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival, which takes place Sept. 9-11 in Historic Downtown Bristol, Virginia-Tennessee. Willie Watson, Nicki Bluhm and Miko Marks are also part of the latest rollout of artists announced today.

“Tanya very much wanted to be here last year, but was unable to join us due to travel issues,” said Leah Ross, executive director of advancement for the Birthplace of Country Music, the parent nonprofit of the festival, the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, and WBCM Radio Bristol. “It’s serendipitous that she’ll perform in Bristol as we celebrate the 95th anniversary of the 1927 Bristol Sessions and the same year as Rosanne Cash, another iconic figure in country music.”

Rosanne Cash, JJ Grey & Mofro, Briston Maroney and Katie Pruitt were among the artists announced back in January. More of the lineup will be revealed late March.

Scheduled to appear at Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, Sept. 9-11,2022 (February rollout highlighted below):

JJ Grey & Mofro
Tanya Tucker
Rosanne Cash
Del McCoury Band
Jerry Douglas Band
Asleep at the Wheel
Briston Maroney
Donna the Buffalo
Katie Pruitt
49 Winchester
Ralph Stanley II & The Clinch Mountain Boys
Dallas Wayne
John R. Miller
Willie Watson
Nicki Bluhm
Miko Marks
Dallas Moore
Dave Eggar
S.G. Goodman
Emily Scott Robinson
Jonathan Byrd
Bill & the Belles
Wildermiss
Annabelle’s Curse
Oh He Dead
The Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band
The Cordovas
Missy Raines & Allegheny
Of Good Nature
Chatham Rabbits
Caitlin Krisko & The Broadcast
The Get Right Band
Abby Bryant & The Echoes
Kyshona
Carson Peters & Iron Mountain
Fedor & the Denim Denim
Brennen Leigh
Sunny War
Tuatha Dea
Beth Snapp
Kelsey Rae
Jennifer Knapp
Jake Blount
The Honey Dewdrops
My New Favorites
The Blue Ridge Girls
Alli Epperson
Adeem the Artist
Casey Noel
Wound Tight
Tiffany Williams

Additional highlights of the festival, with the price of admission, is a special exhibit at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, 1968 Folsom Prison Redemption that honors “The Man in Black,” Johnny Cash.

BCM plans to release additional Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion festival artists at the end of each month through April, anticipating approximately 100 acts to gather and share their music and creative energy. Weekend passes are on sale now for $100. Artist schedules and single day tickets will be released later this summer. For tickets and more information, visit BristolRhythm.com.

Rosanne Cash, JJ Grey & Mofro, Headlining Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion 2022

Bristol, Tenn./Va. (January 27, 2022) – Rosanne Cash and JJ Grey & Mofro are two of the top headliners for the Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival, Sept. 9-11, 2022, in Historic Downtown Bristol, Tennessee-Virginia. The announcement of Grey and Cash are part of the first round of artists announced today by festival organizers.

“We are thrilled that JJ Grey & Mofro and Rosanne Cash are among our headliners this year,” said Leah Ross, executive director of advancement for the Birthplace of Country Music, the parent nonprofit of the festival, the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, and WBCM Radio Bristol. “Rosanne’s participation is especially significant as we recognize the 95th anniversary of the 1927 Bristol Sessions, which her father Johnny Cash named ‘the single most important event in the history of country music.'”

Though the festival celebrates the impact of those recordings every year, this year’s lineup reflects just how far-reaching and influential the 1927 Bristol Sessions continue to be across a wide range of music genres.

Scheduled to appear at Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, Sept. 9-11,2022:

  • Rosanne Cash
  • JJ Grey & Mofro
  • Jerry Douglas Band
  • Briston Maroney
  • Donna the Buffalo
  • Katie Pruitt
  • 49 Winchester
  • Ralph Stanley II & The Clinch Mountain Boys
  • Dallas Wayne
  • John R. Miller
  • Bill & the Belles
  • The Get Right Band
  • Caitlin Krisko & The Broadcast
  • Kyshona
  • Carson Peters & Iron Mountain
  • Kelsey Rae
  • Jennifer Knapp
  • Jake Blount
  • The Honey Dewdrops
  • Adeem the Artist
  • Casey Noel
  • Wound Tight

Additional highlights of the festival, with the price of admission, is a special exhibit at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum to honor “The Man in Black” – Johnny Cash’s 1968 Folsom Prison Redemption.

BCM plans to release additional Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion festival artists at the end of each month through April, anticipating approximately 100 acts to gather and share their music and creative energy. Weekend passes are on sale now for $100. Artist schedules and single day tickets will be released later this summer. For tickets and more information, click here.

Bristol Rhythm 2021 Artist Schedule Announced

Bristol, Tenn./Va. (July 6, 2021) – Nearly as anticipated as its annual lineup announcement, the schedule release for the 20th anniversary celebration of Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion has been announced – along with the release of single-day tickets to the award-winning music festival. Presented by the Birthplace of Country Music (BCM), also the parent nonprofit of the Birthplace of Country Music Museum and WBCM Radio Bristol, Bristol Rhythm will be held this September 10-12 in Historic Downtown Bristol, Tennessee-Virginia after COVID-19 forced the organization to take a gap year in 2020.

“Everyone at BCM is thrilled to be in the final stages of planning for what promises to be a memorable Reunion!” said BCM Executive Director Leah Ross at a press conference held at the museum. “Very soon, we will be dancing together again on State Street to some great live music – and for that, we are truly grateful.”

Bristol Rhythm is a celebration of the legendary 1927 Bristol Sessions recordings, an event in music history that has become known as the “big bang” of country music. The Sessions included the first recordings of the Carter Family and Jimmie Rodgers, and brought country music to the mainstream. The Bristol Sessions continue to make a lasting impact on the music of today, and Bristol is designated by Congress as the birthplace of country music.

In October 2001, the first Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion was held on State Street (where Tennessee and Virginia meet) with a few thousand people in attendance. The festival has grown to receive more than 45,000 visitors from all over the world. Today, as Bristol Rhythm celebrates 20 years, downtown Bristol is a vibrant and revitalized music destination that features beautiful boutique hotels, breweries, restaurants, galleries, shops, and high-end loft spaces. The festival’s growth and the opening of the Birthplace of Country Music Museum have played a major role in the development of this historic downtown..

“Since we’ve reclaimed and embraced our rich music history and culture, we have grown and thrived,” Ross reflects. “BCM and the festival are proud to have played a role in the revitalization of our great cities, and it’s part of our mission to continue to be an economic driver for our community.”

Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion 2021 boasts amazing talent for it’s 20th anniversary festival: Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit, Tanya Tucker, Blackberry Smoke, Dr. Dog, Yola, The SteelDrivers, Rhonda Vincent, and Hayes Carll lead the stellar lineup of approximately 100 acts performing this September. Other notable performances by The Steel Woods, Son Little, Lonesome River Band, Darin & Brooke Aldridge, Amythyst Kiah, Ian Noe, Town Mountain, Katie Pruitt, Jim Lauderdale, Illiterate Light, and Morgan Wade will also be part of the milestone event.

In addition to the artists’ schedule, BCM announced a special kick-off concert by Cruz Contreras & Friends to be held on Thursday, September 9 at 7:00 p.m. in the museum’s Performance Theater. Tickets to the concert are sold separately.

Bristol Rhythm hits the ground running with Friday night performances by Tanya Tucker, Yola, The SteelDrivers, and Hayes Carll. Amythyst Kiah and 49 Winchester are also on deck. Radio Bristol’s Farm and Fun Time live variety show, hosted by Kris Truelsen and his house band Bill and the Belles, will return to the stage at the historic Paramount with special guests Madison Cunningham, Sierra Ferrell, and Nora Brown. Music will begin Friday afternoon at 4:30 p.m. Single-day tickets for Friday are $50 plus tax/fees.

Per usual, Saturday at Bristol Rhythm is jam-packed with artists starting at noon and playing into the midnight hour. Blackberry Smoke, Dr. Dog, Darin & Brooke Aldridge, Town Mountain, The Steel Woods, Ian Noe, and Illiterate Light are all slated to perform on that day, interspersed with American Aquarium, The New Respects, Folk Soul Revival, Andrew Scotchie & the River Rats, and Annabelle’s Curse, among many others. A special tribute to John Prine is also planned for that evening on the Near Moore Stage, featuring members of Sol Driven Train, Big Daddy Love, and Yarn. Single-day tickets for Saturday are $70 plus tax/fees.

The Bristol Rhythm weekend ends on a high note Sunday evening with festival headliner Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit closing out the 20th anniversary event. Other Sunday performances of note include Rhonda Vincent, Charley Crockett, Son Little, Morgan Wade, Early James, and Scythian. Single-day tickets for Sunday are $60 plus tax/fees.

The festival’s annual commemorative poster artwork was also unveiled at the press conference with artist Matt Bridges in attendance. A native of Hereford, England, Bridges has worked in 3D design for the past two decades. After meeting his wife, who is from Chattanooga, the couple settled in Elizabethton, Tennessee, and later moved to Clarksville. Bridges has worked on a number of long-term contracts as a freelancer with companies such as Gulf Oil and Hertz, but it was his work designing a 3D guitar prototype for a luthier in California that led the High Road Agency to recommend the artist to BCM for this project. Bridges and his wife are currently looking to relocate back to our region.

“It was an honor to be able to use my 20 years of design experience in creating the 20th anniversary commemorative poster for Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion,” said Bridges. “The festival is a beloved tradition for my family here in East Tennessee.”

In keeping with tradition, BCM presented the mayors of Bristol, Tennessee and Bristol, Virginia with framed prints of the poster. A special 20th anniversary poster depicting images of poster artwork from the past ten years is also available. Both prints may be purchased at The Museum Store at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum and online at Bristol Rhythm.com.

When Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion was cancelled in 2020, a fundraising campaign was held to help ease the financial burden of the loss of the event. Hundreds of “Festival Heroes” made donations in order to ensure a festival would take place in 2021. Those Festival Heroes are now honored permanently inside the Birthplace of Country Music Museum with a plaque bearing their names. If you are among this generous group of Heroes, your free Festival Heroes poster is now available for pick up at The Museum Store or you can send an email to info@birthplaceofcountrymusic.org to have it shipped to your home free of charge.

A few other important notes about this year’s festival were revealed during the press conference, including a plea for volunteers. Hundreds of shifts in a variety of areas are still needed for Bristol Rhythm 2021. Applications are up on the festival website at BristolRhythm.com. Each volunteer receives a single-day ticket to the festival and a Volunteer t-shirt for each shift they work.

“It takes hundreds of volunteers to make our event run smoothly,” said Bristol Rhythm Festival Committee Chair Terri Davis. “Each and every one of them has played a major role in the success and longevity of our festival…We are working hard to make this 20th anniversary one that will keep you coming back year after year.”

Other important items to note:

  • Anyone who hasn’t yet exchanged their 2020 festival wristband for a 2021 version will need to do so as soon as possible. The 2020 wristbands are invalid and will not allow entry into festival gates this year. Send an email to info@birthplaceofcountrymusic.org to make the switch. If you ordered 2021 wristbands but have yet to receive them, they will be shipped in August.
  • Slots for food and craft vendors at Bristol Rhythm 2021 have been filled for this year, and vendors have been notified. Those interested in applying for 2022 will be able to do so at the first of the year.
  • In support of the festival’s Green Team initiative, the annual Festival Guide booklet will be replaced with a printed pocket schedule and map that will be distributed in the Bristol Herald Courier and the Washington County News prior to the festival. The schedule and map will also be distributed at festival gates.

“We felt our resources are best put to use by producing a quality mobile app where changes can be updated at a moment’s notice and without waste,” stated Ross. “We are encouraging everyone to download the festival app for the latest schedule changes and updates before they get to the festival.”

The festival mobile app will launch in coming weeks. For now, fans will find updated schedules on the website at BristolRhythm.com.

In keeping with health and safety guidelines provided by the state of Tennessee and the Commonwealth of Virginia, visitors at the festival will not be required to wear masks or show proof of vaccination status upon entry at Bristol Rhythm.

“The decision will be left up to the individual and what they feel most comfortable doing,” said Ross. “We trust that anyone who is feeling under the weather or showing symptoms of COVID-19 will stay home and get the rest they need to stay healthy and not put others at risk.”

Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion will also bring back its 10K Run-5K Run/Walk, Children’s Day, and Yoga in the Park activities for its 20th anniversary, and the Bristol Sessions Super Raffle winners will be announced on the Sunday of the event at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum between the hours of noon to 4:00 p.m. For raffle prize information and to purchase raffle tickets, visit BristolSessionsSuperRaffle.org.

Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion festivalgoers are encouraged to take some time during the event to tour the interactive Birthplace of Country Music Museum, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, to learn more about the story of the 1927 Bristol Sessions and the region’s rich music culture. The museum is located within the festival footprint. The special exhibit Our Living Past: Platinum Portraits of Southern Music Makers, on loan from the Music Maker Relief Foundation, will also be on display. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts on the Road Artmobile – a traveling exhibit and education studio – will be open to Bristol Rhythm attendees free of charge on Friday, September 10 from 1:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., on Saturday September 11 from 9:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., and on Sunday September 12 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. It will be closed Saturday and Sunday for lunch from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.

For artist schedules, festival wristbands, parking and shuttle passes, or to shop for festival merchandise and find other festival information, visit BristolRhythm.com.

Celebrate Bristol Rhythm Online Events Sept. 10-13

Bristol, Va./Tenn. (Sept. 2, 2020) – With the cancellation of this year’s Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion came the promise of a few “surprises” on what would have been festival weekend – and the Birthplace of Country Music (BCM, parent nonprofit of the annual event) is making good on it. 

Celebrating Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion Live Stream will take place September 10-13, 2020 with virtual, live concert events that include Jim Lauderdale, Acoustic Syndicate, Amythyst Kiah, Morgan Wade, and Martha Spencer, a WBCM Radio Bristol Farm and Fun Time show, flashback performances from festivals past, and the Bristol Sessions Super Raffle drawing.  

“It’s important for us to do something to commemorate the Festival this year even if it can’t be in person,” said BCM Executive Director Leah Ross. “This would have been our 20th anniversary, a milestone. We can’t let that go. We also felt that our community and our staff really needed something positive to help fill that void.”

The schedule for Celebrating Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion Live Stream is as follows:

Thursday, September 10 – 7:00 p.m.
Kick off the weekend with a Farm and Fun Time show from the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, featuring host band Bill & The Belles – artists to include Po’ Ramblin’ Boys and 49 Winchester.

Farm and Fun Time is presented by Eastman Credit Union and with support from Holston Medical Group.

Friday, September 11 – 7:00 p.m.
Join us Friday night as we partner with the Virginia Tourism Corporation to celebrate Virginia Music Heritage Month. This show will feature music from Amythyst Kiah, Morgan Wade, and Martha Spencer. The night will be filled with live music, announcements about the 2021 Festival line-up, and more!

Friday evening is presented by Virginia is for Lovers and
Holston Medical Group.

Saturday, September 12 – 1:00 p.m.
Festival Flashbacks – Join us on Saturday afternoon to watch some past Festival performances. Past shows will include Carson Peters & Iron Mountain, The War and Treaty, Mike Farris, Folk Soul Revival, Jerry Douglas and the Earls of Leicester, and the Way Down Wanderers.

The Festival Flashback is presented by Bristol Tennessee Essential Services.

Saturday, September 12 – 7:00 p.m. Kick off Saturday night with two live performances with Acoustic Syndicate and Jim Lauderdale. We will also celebrate the incredible support we have received from our 2020 Festival Heroes, Downtown Bristol community, and our sponsors. We’ll even reveal additional artists that will be playing at the 2021 festival. 

Saturday evening is presented by Holston Medical Group.

Sunday, September 13 – 12:00 p.m. Join us for the Bristol Sessions Super Raffle Drawing as we give away $250,000 in prizes. 

To view the Live Stream tune into the following links:

Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion Facebook Page
Radio Bristol Facebook Page
Birthplace of Country Music Facebook Page

YouTube
Radio Bristol YouTube Channel

Website
BristolRhythm.com

In addition to the live stream, BCM will wrap up the 2020 Festival Hero Campaign. Festival Heroes are patrons who donate $75 or more to the Festival Recovery Fund to help recoup losses from this year’s cancelled event. Donors will be listed as 2020 Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion Heroes on a permanent display in the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, receive a Special Edition 20th anniversary poster signed by the artist, a discount on tickets for 2021, and more. Donations of over $250 will receive all of the above, plus a one-year membership to the organization’s 1927 Society, and other festival merchandise. All donations are tax-deductible, and 2020 tickets may be “donated” back to BCM to receive incentives. Visit BristolRhythmHero.com for more details.

The 20th annual Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival has been rescheduled for September 10-12, 2021 in Historic Downtown Bristol, Virginia-Tennessee.