Performers

Featured Performers

CrookedWillow_250a (11K)

Crooked Willow

Crooked Willow is a Folk/Americana/Roots string band formed in friendship and connected through music, performing everything from a re-imagined cover of a Lady Gaga song through works composed by guitarist Tim Waller. Crooked Willow is made up of Elisi Smith doing lead vocals and performing on the tenor banjo; Dan Driesen on lead guitar; Tim Waller on vocals and guitar; Erik Hanson on bass; Kari Gallagher on fiddle; and Sylva Hanson on washboard.
(Read More)

Performs:
Saturday 12:45 - 2:15 Main Stage
Saturday 3:00 - 4:15 Site A
Sunday Farewell Concert

Dead-Horses_250 (8K)

Dead Horses

Raised on Bible Hymns by her preacher father, Dead Horses front woman Sarah Vos’s backstory sounds more like that of an old bluesman from the Mississippi Delta than a young folk singer from Wisconsin. But despite their youth, the Milwaukee-based Americana trio has crafted a timeless sound, informed as much by modern folk as it is by the classics.
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Performs:
Saturday 11:30 - 12:45 Site A
Saturday 1:15 - 2:30 Site A
Saturday Evening Concert

John_Gorka

John Gorka

Since 1987, John Gorka has been one of the preeminent voices among America’s performing songwriters. Minnesota-based, he has toured widely across North America. His songs have been recorded by, among others, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Nanci Griffith, and Mary Black, and for good reason. John’s songs offer poignant commentary on the world we live in, bridging the gap between the personal and the political.
(Read More)

Performs:
Saturday 1:15 - 2:30 Site A
Saturday 3:00 - 4:15 Site A
Sunday 12:45 - 2:00 Main Stage
Sunday Farewell Concert

Kelley-McRae250 (9K)

Kelley McRae

Kelley McRae & guitarist Matt Castelein have toured coast to coast in the US, played to packed rooms across Europe, sold-out the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, and continue to build a passionate following.

The duo’s repertoire includes haunting ballads, tender love songs, and energetic guitar-driven songs full of hope.
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Performs:
Saturday 12:45 - 2:15 Main Stage
Saturday Evening Concert
Sunday 12:45 - 2:00 Main Stage
Sunday 2:15 - 3:30 Site A

Lindsay Lou and the Flatbellys

Lindsay Lou and the Flatbellys

Lindsay Lou and the Flatbellys (LLFB), earned their name on a late night at a Michigan Bluegrass festival. A fellow musician there proclaimed, “It’s good to see you Flatbellys out here pickin’ with us Greybeards.” An eclectic Americana band, LLFB developed their sound jamming at open mics and music festivals around Michigan.
(Read more...)

Performs:
Saturday 11:00 - 12:15 Main Stage
Saturday 12:45 - 2:15 Main Stage
Saturday Evening Concert

Paul Cebar photo: KarlMcWherter-Photography

Paul Cebar

Paul Cebar is a songwriter, singer, guitarist and bandleader, whose music has its roots in African, Caribbean, and Latin American forms, as well as American jazz.

Cebar honed his sound in the mid-1970’s coffee house folk scene in Milwaukee. He was a member of the R & B Cadets, and then further developed his unique style fronting for the Milwaukeeans.
(Read More)

Performs:
Friday Evening Concert
Saturday 11:00 - 12:15 Main Stage

Patchouli

Patchouli

Patchouli is a not-to-be-missed musical duo, featuring the dazzling guitar work of Bruce Hecksel and the lovely voice and radiant presence of Julie Patchouli. Bruce is simply a master on the guitar; watching his fingers moving on the guitar fretboard itself would make a Patchouli performance memorable.
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Performs:
Friday Evening Concert

Sawtooth Brothers

Sawtooth Brothers

The sound of the Sawtooth Brothers is rooted in traditional bluegrass instrumental and harmony work and is influenced by modern acoustic sounds, blending pop and indie rock sensibilities with heartfelt Americana. They perform in a range of genres and forms, including creative original songs, hard driving bluegrass, classic country, gospel, and classic rock.
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Performs:
Saturday 11:30 - 12:45 Site A
Saturday Evening Concert
Sunday 12:45 - 2:00 Main Stage
Sunday 2:15 - 3:30 Site A

The Waymores

The Waymores

Tom Kimmel, Sally Barris and Don Henry are three of Nashville’s finest singer-songwriters, best known for their compositions (writers for Ray Charles, Johnny Cash, Trisha Yearwood, Miranda Lambert, Linda Ronstadt and dozens of others) and outstanding solo work (over a dozen albums among them). But real magic happens when the three unite on stage.
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Performs:
Saturday 11:00 - 12:15 Main Stage
Saturday 1:15 - 2:30 Site A
Saturday Evening Concert
Sunday 2:15 - 3:30 Site A

More Performers

BCTaleSpinTerryvisger

Bluff Country Tale Spinners

Members performing at GRFF: Teri Wachuta, Steve Hardin, and Terry Visger

The Bluff Country Tale Spinners storytelling guild promotes the appreciation of the art of storytelling and the development of storytelling skills among its members. Beginner through advanced tellers share stories and receive feedback from members. The guild meets the second Thursday of each month at King St. Kitchen and holds its La Crosse Storytelling Festival in Myrick Park, Sept. 9-10. Visit our web site at www.lacrossestoryfest.com

Performs:
Saturday 12:00 - 1:00 Children's Area
Sunday 2:30 - 3:30 Children's Area

BluffMountainRamblers_2_250 (11K)

Bluff Mountain Ramblers

Josh Rabie and Tim Foss play Old-time/bluegrass/country music from the Driftless area of Wisconsin.

Performs:
Sunday 12:00 - 12:45 Site B

CheezLand0001 (8K)

The CheezLand Uke Band

The CheezLand 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 CheezLand 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 2:00 - 2:45 Site B

CeAnna Christen

CeAnna will lead a Latin and Salsa dance workshop on Sunday. She has been Latin dancing since 2009, competing in Bachata Latin Dance contests, and participating and leading salsa dance at the Latin Dance group in Rochester, Minn.

Performs:
Sunday 2:00 - 3:30 Site B

DerekRamnarace

Derek Ramnarace

Singer, guitarist and songwriter Derek Ramnarace is bringing his latest project, Old Soul Society, to the Great River Folk Fest. Some might know Ramnarace from his work with the rock band Hooch or his work with The SoapBox Project. Old Soul Society claims many genres: Americana, Roots, Folk, Rock, Soul, and Blues. All have found their way onto the group’s first album: The Farmhouse Sessions.

Performs:
Saturday 12:00 - 12:45 Site B

ElizabethGhandour_250 (8K)

Elizabeth Ghandour & The Heighburners

Fronted by Minneapolis singer-songwriter Elizabeth Ghandour, who began her musical career in theatre and pursuing opera. Elizabeth stumbled into New York’s folk music scene, her musical ambitions crystalized, and she moved back to the Twin Cities to pursue singing and writing.

Joining Ghandour are Twin Cities banjo player Johnny Kovarik, steel player Josh Braun, bassist Matt Palin and percussionist Jeremy Hauer. Blending the sounds of steel guitar, banjo, acoustic bass and percussion to support beautiful harmonized vocals, The Heighburners strive to modernize American folk music while remaining true to its gritty roots.

Performs:
Sunday 1:00 - 1:45 Site B

GrandPicnic_Thumb (11K)

Grand Picnic String Band

La Crosse’s old time String band featuring Chuck Lee, Larry Dalton, Barb Dalton, Dave Skoloda, Judson Steinback, and Dan Brodrick.

Performs:
Saturday 3:00 - 4:30 Site B

GRSF

GRSF Shakespeare for Young Actors

The Great River Folk Festival is thrilled to partner with the Great River Shakespeare Festival to bring Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors, performed by dedicated youth, to the Children’s area. The Great River Shakespeare Festival, based in Winona, MN, seeks to create dynamic, clearly spoken productions of Shakespeare’s plays that enrich people’s lives. The Shakespeare Festival has provided entertainment and education since 2004. Its Festival includes live theatre performances, free concerts and community events. It has grown in popularity and reputation year after year. Additionally, GRSF offers education programming year-round.

Performs:
Sunday 12:30 - 2:00 Children's Area

Isaiah-Foster_250 (7K)

Isaiah Foster

The Magic of Isaiah provides a fun, interactive comedy magic show for all ages. The show has plenty of audience participation, comedy and of course that special ingredient: magic. Watch for the Magic of Isaiah in the Children’s area. (Read More)

Performs:
Saturday 2:00 - 3:00 Children's Area

JeniBlakeInspired

Jeni Blake

Jeni Blak is an artist and owner of Inspired! a local art studio where you can shop, create, and socialize! Blake specializes in teaching a wide variety of art and craft classes to all ages. She also hosts private events such as Birthday Parties and Ladies Nights. Inspired is located at 1516 Market St. in La Crosse and on the web at www.InspiredLaCrosse.com.

Performs:
Sunday 3:30 - 5:00 Children's Area

JewelAagaard

Jewel Aagaard

Jewel Aagaard is an assistant to Youth Services at La Crosse Public Library and a vocalist who sings and teaches in the area. She loves to combine her interests to find new ways to share stories through music and the written word.

Performs:
Saturday 3:00 - 4:00 Children's Area

JuddSteinback

Judson Steinback

Judson Steinback, a 17-year La Crosse resident, teaches and plays mountain dulcimer. He plays with the old-time string band “Grand Picnic,” a traditional music trio called “Walk Old Shoe,” and has participated in several recording projects, including his most recent CD, For Gary. In addition to the mountain dulcimer, Judson plays penny whistle, guitar, harmonica, and traditional African and Arabic percussion. He is regularly hired to teach and perform at folk music festivals around the country.

Performs:
Saturday 1:00 - 2:00 Children's Area
Sunday 2:00 - 2:30 Children's Area

maryStutesman

Mary Stutesman

Mary Ender Stutesman is a native of La Crosse and has been teaching general and vocal music in the School District of La Crosse since 2000, currently at Longfellow and Logan Middle Schools. Ms. Stutesman has loved drumming since she received her first drum as a gift from a stranger more than 20 years ago. She taught music for 2 years in Tanzania, East Africa, and much of her time there was spent learning rhythms and drum construction from native drummers. Today she enjoys introducing kids to drumming as a way to express themselves, relieve stress and connect with other humans.

Performs:
Sunday 2:00 - 2:30 Children's Area

Pig Town Fling String Band

Pigtown Fling String Band

La Crosse-based Pigtown Fling delivers a mix of Irish, old time, bluegrass, blues, and swing with Casey Barth on the mandolin, Jessie McDonald on the fiddle, Sherri Byrne on bass, and Barry Byrne on guitar.

Locals may have enjoyed them at the Root Note, the Bodega Brew Pub, or Pearl Street Brewery.

Performs:
Saturday 11:30 - 12:45 Site A
Saturday 3:00 - 4:15 Site A

Sarah Streitz

Sarah Streitz

Minneapolis-based singer-songwriter Sarah Streitz brings a unique twist to the Americana label that best describes her sound. Country soul and blue rock-tinged, her songs are raw and honest and she performs with ease and attitude. Sarah will be joined by Park Evans on guitar and Josh Granowski on bass.

Performs:
Saturday 1:00 - 1:45 Site B

Sue Hulsether)

Sue Hulsether

Sue Hulsether leads dances from American folk traditions guided by a passion for creating positive human connections. When Sue leads, she weaves dancing, singing and community into a joyful tapestry of music and movement. Under the spell of her energetic flair, warmth and clear instruction, groups of all sorts find themselves on their feet and eager to join in. Sue’s calm confidence manages groups large and small, stemming from years of calling dances and teaching people of all ages.

Since 2003, Sue has worked full-time as a dance caller and teaching artist, calling dances in barns, schools, community centers and parks around the Upper Midwest.

Performs:
Saturday 3:00 - 4:30 Site B

WideAwakes_250 (9K)

The Wide Awakes

The Wide Awakes (and friends) will be playing music from the movie O’ Brother Where Art Thou—a reprise of a series of O’ Brother Where Art Thou tribute concerts performed last winter.

The Wide Awakes call their sound “Northern Bluegrass.” The band is comprised of Tanner Brethorst, Dave Casey, Alex Meine, Ingrid Ogren, and Chris Peters.

Performs:
Sunday 11:00 - 12: 15 Main Stage