Twitter Facebook 2014Green_Great River Folk Fest Logo

Great River Folk Festival

39th Annual  ::  August 22 – 24, 2014  
Riverside Park  ::  La Crosse, Wisconsin

Performers

(In alphabetical order)

Aric Sampson

Aric Sampson

Aric Sampson. winner of the 2013 Great River Folk Festival Songwriting Contest, is a talented singer/songwriter from Trempealeau, WI. Son of accomplished banjo player and banjo bridge builder Rick Sampson, Aric took to the guitar at age 4 and by 9 was performing publicly. In addition to vocals Aric performs with equal ease on guitar, mandolin, bass, and drums. In 2009, he released his first self titled CD of original songs, multi-tracking many of the instrumental parts as well. Aric’s songwriting is an open coming of age journal, thoughtfully blending poetry and raw emotion against a skillful melodic backdrop.

Performs:
Sunday, 12:00 – 12:45 Site B

The Barefoot Movement

BarefootMove_01_thumb (13K)

The Barefoot Movement have been making waves in the folk world since the release of their 2011 debut album Footwork. Drawing from the styles of bluegrass, folk, acoustic rock, and Americana, The Barefoot Movement, with their original songs, impressive instrumentation, and interweaving harmonies, converge the old and new, into a style all their own that is certain to be appreciated by all generations.
(Read more. . .and view sample music videos)

Performs:
Saturday, 11:30 - 12:45 Site A
Saturday, 1:15 – 2:30 Site A
Saturday Evening Concert
Sunday, 1:15 – 2:30 Main Stage Area

The Cheez Land Uke Band

CheezLandUke_small (14K)

The Cheez Land Uke Band is a group of people with a passion for playing and learning to play the ukulele. While some members of the Uke Band perform at public events, many of the band’s members are more than happy to share the experience of the weekly Uke gatherings. The group is open to people of all levels of ability. The Cheez Land Uke Band is riding a wave of Ukulele popularity that has been growing over the past decade. The Uke is fun. It’s easy to learn. It’s easy to play. It’s small. It’s portable. It’s inexpensive. It’s social. It makes people smile. It’s used to play all kinds of music.

Performs:
Saturday, 1:00 – 1:50 Site B

Claudia Schmidt

Claudia_gallery37_200 (7K)

A fest favorite returns with Sally Rogers to help close out the festival on Sunday. For almost four decades Claudia Schmidt has been exploring the nuances of acoustic music with her 12 string guitar, mountain dulcimer, and her rich, jazz-inflected voice. It is her distinctive voice (Read More. . . )

Performs:
Sunday, 11:30 – 12:45 Main Stage Area
Sunday, 1:15 – 2:30 Main Stage Area
Sunday Closing Concert, Main Stage

Colin O’Brien

Colin O'Brien

Colin O’Brien delivers strong musicianship, coupled with a down-home presence that makes for the sweet savor of his music. He has shared the bill with Tim O’Brien, Peter Rowan, and Steve Martin, as well as a regular at the annual John Hartford Memorial Festival.

A Nashville-based performer, Colin delights his audiences with fiery melodies, soulful lyrics, fancy footwork, and old-time hat tricks with his derby.
(Read More. . . view sample music videos)

Performs:
Saturday, 11:30 - 12:45 Site A
Saturday, 1:15 – 2:30 Site A
Saturday Evening Concert
Sunday, 2:00 – 3:30, Site A

David Wilcox

DavidWilcox_250 (9K)

David Wilcox is a true American treasure. He is known for his open tuning acoustic guitar, sawed-off capos, storytelling wit, and insightful metaphors. His songs are a strong elixir. Music distilled. David Wilcox believes that the right song at the right time changes people’s lives. He is the creator of more than 18 albums and has been writing songs for 30 years. David Wilcox is a father, a husband, a citizen and a songwriter.
(Read more. . .and listen to some samples)

Performs:
Saturday, 11:00 - 12:45 Site A
Saturday, 12:45 – 2:00 Main Stage Area
Saturday Evening Concert, Main Stage
Sunday, 2:00 – 3:30, Site A

Grace and Pierce Pettis

Pierce_Grace_Pettis_250 (15K)

With stories in her soul, a dash of courage, and a smile that melts walls, Grace Pettis is busy doing what she was born to do. In her short career, she has built a reputation as a respected songwriter among artists, industry, and fans. Grace will be joined by her father, Pierce Pettis, one of this generation’s most masterful songwriters.
(Read More)

Performs:
Saturday, 11:00 – 12:15 Main Stage Area
Saturday Evening Concert, Main Stage
Sunday, 11:30 – 12:45 Main Stage Area
Sunday, 2:00 – 3:30, Site A

EverGreen Grass Band

EverGreen-Grass-Band

Since 2008, this “not-quite-a-bluegrass band” from Eau Claire, Wi has gathered its traditional bluegrass instruments into what has become one of the most sought-after non-traditional bluegrass acts on the Northwood’s musical frontier.

While many traditional bluegrass bands commonly repeat lyrical themes, EverGreen has cultivated a wide variety of subjects and outlooks in the song craft of (Tim) Litscher and (Caleb) Horne.
(Read more. . .and view sample music videos)

Performs:
Saturday, 1:15 – 2:30 Site A
Saturday, 3:00 – 4:00 Site A
Sunday, 11:30 – 12:45 Main Stage Area
Sunday Closing Concert, Main Stage

Mike Munson

MikeMunson_small (8K)

Rooted in blues, Mike Munson fills the stage with a fluid combination of skilled finger picking and masterful slide guitar. Influenced by the likes of John Lee Hooker and Mississippi John Hurt, his songs tell raw stories of work, travel and loss. Mike has shared the stage with Charlie Parr and Joe and Vicki Price on multiple occasions, among others. He wowed the audience on “Whad’ya Know?” in La Crosse last summer.

Performs:
Saturday, 12:00 – 12:45 Site B

One Less Guitar

One Less Guitar

Ron Reimer’s accordion-based, guitar-less trio featuring Ron on accordion, Sally Reimer on drums, and Terry Grosskopf on bass. One Less Guitar will be providing the dance music for the Winona International Dancers.

(Read more. . .)

Performs:
Saturday, 2:00 — 3:30 Site B

Patchouli

Patchouli02_thumb (10K)

“the harmonies of Simon and Garfunkel meet the guitar brilliance of the Gipsy Kings.”

Patchouli is an acoustic duo unlike any other. Together fourteen years, this duo’s sound is musically rich, with vocals sweet as honey and guitar runs that are breathtaking. Julie Patchouli writes for the duo and carries most of the lead vocals, with Bruce Hecksel providing jaw-dropping guitar licks and harmony vocals.
(Read more. . .and view sample music videos)

Performs:
Saturday, 11:00 – 12:15 Main Stage Area
Saturday, 12:45 – 2:00 Main Stage Area
Saturday, 3:00 – 4:00 Site A
Saturday Evening Concert, Main Stage

PaulErickson (29K)

Paul Erickson

Paul Erickson is an outstanding tenor banjo player steeped in Mississippi River jazz sound. He plays locally with La Crosse’s beloved Al Townsend’s Wonderful World of Jazz band. He has also been influential and the organizer of the long running Midwest Banjo Jamboree. Stop and ask him all about it.

Performs:
Sunday, 1:00 – 1:45 Site B

Rick Sampson (9K)

Rick Sampson

Rick Sampson is an accomplished 5-string banjo player in the style of Bela Fleck. Rick has been playing in local and regional bands for more than 30 years. Besides being a fine musician, Rick builds banjos, and is sought out from far and wide for his expertise at banjo bridges.

Performs:
Sunday, 1:00 – 1:45 Site B

Sally Rogers

Sally Rogers

Sally Rogers performs traditional, contemporary and original ballads and song, interwoven with stories taken from her life as a performer, a wife and a mother. Throughout her concerts, she accompanies herself on guitar and Appalachian dulcimer, or performs without accompaniment in a voice that needs no further enhancement. Reviewers have described her voice in superlatives ranging from “remarkable” to “mesmerizing.” As one critic summarized, “…it’s really next to impossible to do justice to a voice of that quality.”
(Read more. . .)

Performs:
Saturday, 11:00 – 12:15 Main Stage Area
Saturday, 12:45 – 2:00 Main Stage Area
Sunday, 1:15 – 2:30 Main Stage Area
Sunday Closing Concert, Main Stage

Terry Grosskopf (29K)

Terry Grosskopf

Terry Grosskopf has played bass with some of the great orchestras—Lawrence Welk and Guy Lombardo—as well as the Harry James Band and Al Townsend's Wonderful World of Jazz. Saturday, he will be trying to hold the banjo world together. He will also handle bass duties for One Less Guitar for the Dance later on Saturday.

Performs:
Sunday, 1:00 – 1:45 Site B
Saturday, 2:00 – 3:30 Site B (with One Less Guitar)

Tim O’Brien & Darrell Scott

Tim O'Brien and Darrell Scott

Darrell Scott and Tim O’Brien are highly regarded writers, singers, and multi-instrumentalists, each with his own solo career and other projects. They are “re-uniting” this year to support their newest collaboration, Memories & Moments, their second studio album. Scott and O’Brien met in Nashville in the 1990s. O’Brien, who comes from West Virginia, was steeped in bluegrass and country, was steeped in bluegrass and country, while Scott, from nearby Kentucky, straddled country and rock ’n’ roll.
(Read more. . .)

Performs:
Friday, 7:30, opening concert, Riverside Park

TomPfaff (19K)

Tom Pfaff

Tommy Pfaff has been stuck on the banjo since he began chording Tin Pan Alley tunes on his Grandma’s little old banjo uke. From those early Dixieland roots, sprang the Bluegrass style of banjo that Tommy has played and taught for over 30 years.Along the way, he has shared the stage with musicians of every stripe: country, rock, folk, blues, dixie, jazz, and polka. Despite these many years of experience and experiences, Tommy nonetheless has failed to learn how to play the banjo in even a remotely musical way. He has concluded, therefore that people take such an instant dislike to his banjo “music” because, well, “it just saves time.”

Performs:
Sunday, 1:00 – 1:45 Site B

Ultrasonics_250 (14K)

The Ultrasonic Duo

The Ultrasonic Duo is a popular original and variety act from La Crosse Wisconsin featuring Don D. Harvey and Greg Grokowsky. Known for smooth strong vocals and tight harmonies, the duo can sound like a laid back vocal group or a high energy rock band. While they have never been tied to one particular style of music, they have been referred to as both traditional and contemporary.
(Read more...)

Performs:
Saturday, 3:00 – 4:30 Site A

UnderParisSkies_250 (14K)

Under Paris Skies

Under Paris Skies performs Euro café music and gypsy jazz—imagine a sidewalk bistro, Paris, 1930’s.  Their repertoire includes French musette, Parisian swing, as well as tangos, boleros and bossas.  Once you hear it you can’t forget it—romantic, sophisticated and sentimental, elegant with swing.

Under Paris Skies features Ron Reimer - accordion, Steven Meger - guitar, and Larry Dalton - upright bass.  

(Read more. . .)

Performs:
Sunday, 2:00 - 3:15 Site B

Winona International Dancers (34K)

Winona International Dancers

For 33 years, the Winona International Dancers have revived traditional folk dances from all over the world; by one estimate, they have taught more than 1000 dances. The Winona Post quotes one dance attendee as saying “It’s so much fun. You can travel the world without leaving town, or when you travel the world, you can impress the locals with dances from their country.”

The Post concludes: “It is easy to imagine entire villages of folks gathering to dance the same steps the group traces across the floor. It is hard not to smile, too, imagining the excitement Kujawiak, a Polish flirting dance, would bring young Poles, or envisioning generations of Turks bending low and clapping hands together in an old-time wedding dance.”

Performs:
Saturday, 2:00 – 3:30 Site B

More to Come!

Festival Sponsors

Peoples Coop Logo(19K) Viterbo-vert_color_150 (6K) PearlStreet_150 (14K) Rick-Thompson-Drywall
People’s Food Co-op
La Crosse, WI
Rochester, MN
Viterbo University
La Crosse, WI
Pearl Street Brewery La Crosse, WI Rick Thompson Drywall
La Crosse, WI

Major Sponsors

Mayo Health System
Wiscomsin Public Radio Hanson and Associates blue heron Bike Shop
Win Craft Channel 8 LaCrosse Radio Group Wettstein Brothers Electric
  Honda motorwerks ufah (3K) grfa (5K)