Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Reveals Full Lineup for Virtual Fest and Partners With Artist Relief to Aid Struggling Musicians

Emmylou Harris, Yola, Steve Earle, Buddy Miller, Rhiannon Giddens and the War and Treaty are among artists taking part in the Oct. 3 special.

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, the festival that would have been drawing tens of thousands to San Francisco on the first weekend of October under other circumstances, has announced the final lineup for a virtual festival that will be taking its place Oct. 3. The festival also revealed that it is partnering with Artist Relief for the charitable component of the online festival and has already donated $1 million to the organization.

The web version of the festival will be rather more condensed — three hours, instead of three days — but still include a good deal of the names that roots music enthusiasts would expect to see on the lineup. Returning favorites include Emmylou Harris, Bonnie Raitt, Patty Griffin, Buddy Miller, Jim Lauderdale, Alison Brown, Boz Scaggs, Jimmie Dale Gilmore & Butch Hancock, the McCrary Sisters, Aaron Lee Tasjan and Rhiannon Giddens in partnership with Francesco Turrisi. Rising stars like Yola, Sierra Ferrell and the War and Treaty round out the bill. A modified version of Steve Earle & the Dukes will appear, in the form of Steve Earle & the Halfgrass Dukes featuring Tim O’Brien and Dennis Crouch.

“I’ve been so lucky to be able to host a day on the Rooster Stage for the last six years or so and invite friends and acts that I just love and think people would adore,” said Buddy Miller. “This year, we’re doing the ‘Cavalcade of Stars’ from my studio with a lot of those same people — Emmylou Harris, the War & Treaty, Ashley Monroe, Kieran Kane and Rayna Gellert, the McCrary Sisters, and Jim Lauderdale.”

The Miller-hosted Nashville performances will be augmented by clips from the archives.

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Hardly Strictly Bluegrass poster Hardly Strictly Bluegrass

The “Let the Music Play ON” broadcast will air Oct. 3 at 2 p.m. PT/5 ET on Circle TV, HardlyStrictlyBluegrass.com, the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Facebook page, YouTube and Nugs.TV.

Others of the dozens of artists taking part include Fantastic Negrito, Shakey Graves, Carrie Rodriguez, Amythyst Kiah, Chuck Prophet, Kieran Kane, Ashley Monroe, Robert Earl Keen, John Doe, Birds of Chicago and Stuart Duncan.

The $1 million donation to Artist Relief being made by HSB will go to musicians affected by the COVID-19 crisis. The org, launched in April, is a fund that provides $5,000 grants to artists facing extreme financial stress due to the current situation. Tax-deductible donations can be made here. The org says 100% of donations go directly to aiding musicians.

The festival’s organizers previously announced a Hardly Strictly Music Relief Fund: Bay Area, a $1.5 million charitable initiative aimed directly at assisting Bay Area musicians affected by the pandemic.

Full details about the broadcast and its lineup can be found here.