Featured Articles

Kerrville Folk Festival 2010

by: Ben Taylor

It's time again for The 2010 Kerrville Folk Festival starting on May 27 running through June 13.  You may not think this is an article on health, but make no mistake- it is. Time spent outdoors at events such as this will do as much to enhance your well being and relieve stress levels as anything.  This music festival was founded by Rod Kennedy in 1972 and is held every year at the 50 acre Quiet Valley Ranch 9 miles south of Kerrville, Texas on Hwy. 16. It is the oldest continuously running (and in my opinion the best) music festival in North America. There will be a lineup of over 100 performers during its 18 day span.

More than 1500 singer songwriters have graced the stages of The Kerrville Folk Festival. It is more than just a folk festival, because the ear will hear many styles of music, such as traditional folk, bluegrass, acoustic rock, blues, country, jazz, and what you might generally call America. Many major label artists have played here, such as Willie Nelson, Michelle Shocked, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Cindy Williams,    Nancy Griffith, and Gary P. Nunn. The Kerrville stage has also presented other nationally known artists like Peter, Paul, and Mary, Judy Collins, Janice Ian, and Arlo Guthrie.

A partial list of this year’s performers includes, Caroline Aiken, Albert & Gage, Ann Armstrong, Austin Lounge Lizards, Band of Heathens, Big Wide Grin, up Sisters, Slaid Cleaves, but Conductor Jack, Anthony daCosta, The Fire Ants, The Flying ‘A’s, Purly Gates, Jimmy Dreams, Terri Hendrix, the Indigo Girls, Jimmy LaFave, Gulf Morlix, Mickey and The Motor Cars, Kathy Moffat, Andrew Hardin, Randy Rogers, Shake Russell, Walt Wilkins and The Mystiqueros, Zane Williams, and the great folk singer/songwriter, Peter Yarrow.

This is not only a music festival, but also offers music related workshops conducted by professionals from the music world. The workshops available during this year's festival include songwriting, roots and blues guitar, harmonica, and using a capo. So if you’re a budding songwriter, guitarist, or harmonica player and want to learn how the professionals do it, this is the place for you.

The Kerrville Folk Festival website also lists other activities, such as a songwriting contest, numerous singers playing their tunes at The Ballad Tree, singing around campfires at night, canoe trips on the Guadalupe River, hill country bike rides, and a Texas and Tennessee song circle.
One of my favorite attractions is the numerous arts & crafts booths. There is everything from homemade soap to exquisite hand made guitars.  In between you can find tie dyed tee shirts and clothes, sandals, jewelry, and even full body massages.

An added bonus in the Texas Hill country is an unusual abundance of wild flowers. After several years of below par rainfalls, we have had a more normal amount that has brought out flowers in numbers that we haven't seen in 20-30 years. Wildlife and wildflower expert Mitch Heindel tells me that this is a result of a number of years of drought conditions followed by exceptional rainfall at just the right time and in the right amounts. So whatever your enjoyment might be, the 2010 version of The Kerrville Folk Festival will be a great venue to which to bring the whole family for an outdoor adventure in music, camping, and sightseeing all rolled into one.

If roughing it isn't your style, don't be concerned. The hill country resort town of Kerrville has plenty of reasonably priced lodging in which to stay. There are accommodations in nearby Medina, Bandera, and even Utopia if you don't mind the extra drive. You can bring your own food and do your own cooking around the campfires or there is food and drink available in abundance at the food and drink booths. I personally recommend not lunging in any more than you can comfortably carry in one trip from your vehicle. The food is good and reasonably priced. For more information on tickets, call Kerrville Festival at (830) 257-3600 or e-mail: .

Leave a Reply