Pilgrimage Festival Boosts Lineup With Chris Stapleton, Dawes - Rolling Stone
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Pilgrimage Festival Boosts Lineup With Chris Stapleton, Dawes

Willie Nelson, Wilco, and Cage the Elephant also among long list of artists slated to appear during acoustic-heavy Tennessee fest

Chris StapletonChris Stapleton

Chris Stapleton is a new addition to the Willie Nelson-led Pilgrimage Festival in Franklin, Tennessee.

Erika Goldring/Getty Images

Less than one week after the close of Bonnaroo 2015, another Tennessee-based festival is gearing up for its own music-filled weekend. The Pilgrimage Festival, which just announced its final round of performers, will take place September 26th and 27th in Franklin, Tennessee, armed with an A-list lineup whose headliners include Willie Nelson, Wilco and Sheryl Crow

Newly-added performers include Chris Stapleton, Dawes, Cage the Elephant, Band of Horses, Trampled by Turtles, St. Paul and the Broken Bones, Holly Williams, Nawas and Kingfish. Although the lineup has its fair share of rock, Pilgrimage will focus heavily on modern-day roots music. Neko Case, Punch Brothers, Iron & Wine, Will Hoge, the Lone Bellow and Nikki Lane all dot the lineup. New Orleans icons Dr. John and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band will also play their own sets, too, as will pop-rock icons Weezer and funk-soul greats Charles Bradley & his Extraordinaires. Family folk duo Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear, who made a splash at last year’s Americana Music Festival — held 20 minutes north of Franklin’s city limits, in Nashville — are also scheduled to play Pilgrimage, which takes place one week after the 2015 Americana Fest. 

Organized by Better than Ezra frontman Kevin Griffin, a Franklin resident whose recent projects include co-writing hits for Sugarland, Howie Day and Tristan Prettyman, the Pilgrimage Festival will take place on a century-old horse farm. There will be a heavy emphasis on acoustic performances, with most bands setting aside a portion of their set for stripped-down songs. Finally, in a marked contrast to festivals like Bonnaroo, Coachella and Lollapalooza, Pilgrimage will bring its music to a stop by 7:30 p.m., giving attendees a fighting chance to avoid post-festival maladies like “the BonnaFlu” and “CoughChella.”


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