Kerrville Folk Festival 2012
by Ben Taylor
It’s time once again for the longest continuously running music festival of its kind in the USA. Frankly, there isn’t a better outdoor music happening between Austin and Hollywood. The Kerrville Folk Festival founded by Rod Kennedy in 1972 celebrates its 40th birthday from May 24th to June 10th 2012. This event takes place at The Quite Valley Ranch on Highway 16 South of Kerrville.
For those who are looking for a healthy get-away from the stress of job or school, this is an event that won’t break the family budget. The naturalist approach is the overall theme here with its varied booths from natural soaps to massage tents to exquisite had made guitars.
This Festival is known internationally as a gathering place for singers and songwriters of varying musical styles. Although there are more established artists such as Peter Yarrow (of Peter, Paul and Mary folk music fame) this is also a place for younger aspiring artists of all genres to go and gain some recognition. On any given day you may hear music from Country to Gospel to Bluegrass to Blues and sometimes even some acoustic Rock.
This year’s music lineup will kick off on May 24th at 7 PM with Matt Harlan from Houston, Texas. He will be followed by a series of Austin acts starting with Phoebe Hunt and Ghosts Along the Brazos. This band with the possible reference to Hank Thompson and the Brazos Valley Boys (I’m speculating here) also plays a distinctively laid back, but often upbeat brand of Texas swing and western jazz. This is one of my favorite young Austin bands featuring our friend Connor Forsyth on piano, who has also played regularly with the great Ray Price and The Cherokee Cowboys.
Following Ghosts Along The Brazos will be more Austin based artists, Guy Forsyth and Nathan Hamilton. The night ends or maybe we should say begins with Jimmy LaFave, also of Austin. Lucinda Williams said of him. “Jimmy LaFave’s songs move me ’cause he sings them with grit, passion, and uncommon beauty.” As is usually the case, with the last of the “onstage” amphitheater events the more music dedicated of the audience start migrating to the numerous mini acoustic concerts springing up around the various campsites and campfires that sometimes don’t end until near daybreak.
There are 20 acres of campgrounds with facilities available for both RV and tents or canopies. The campground gates open at 1 PM on the 24th for anyone desiring to camp out during their stay at the festival. Remember this is Texas and even though it is late spring it can get very hot and at times even very wet, so come prepared for both. Here is an aerial view of Quite Valley Ranch and a layout map. View Map Here