Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver take their final bow at Jekyll Island

Let us begin by saying that day one of the 45th Jekyll Island Bluegrass Festival was about Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver.

That being said, let’s begin with the other bands that played throughout the day. Remedy Tree opened the show. They are a band from the Jacksonville, FL area that plays a lot of original material. They have become a staple at many Evans Media Source festivals. Penny Creek was up next. They are from the central east coast of Florida and are one of Florida’s top hard driving bands.  Their performances combine traditional bluegrass with original music. They also appear at many EMS festivals.

Backline followed. They are a new band to this photographer. They put on a high energy, powerful show. This is a band to see.

Jeff and Sheri Easter then performed, providing Lewis Family and Easter Family memories along with their own high powered Gospel music.

Quicksilver put on an afternoon set without Doyle, due to his attendance at J.D. Crowe’s funeral. They included several special guests including Troy Pope, Donna Ulisse, Rick Stanley, and Jerry Salley. Kevin McKinnon filled in on mandolin.

Nothin’ Fancy did an evening set, and will do two more on Friday. The boys were nervous as can be, playing just before Doyle’s retirement show. They did an excellent job with two fill in players. Eli Johnston played bass – he was part of the band a number of years ago. Chris Paganoni played guitar and sang.

The next two hours and change was for the record books.

Our MC, Sherry Boyd, is never at a loss for words. She simply brought Doyle on with a, “Thank You.”

I am stealing a quote from my wife, Pam Warren, to put the show in prospective:

“I have been fortunate in that I have attended many live music performances in past years. I do not believe anything will equal what I witnessed last night. Imagine that one of your best friends passed away. Imagine that your last performance was scheduled on the same date as the funeral. Imagine that the night before those events a special dinner was held for you. Imagine a distance too great to drive between the locations.

Doyle Lawson attended that dinner at Jekyll Island, Georgia, flew to Lexington, Kentucky, for the funeral of his friend J.D. Crowe, and flew back and performed last night with his band. Paul Williams also made those flights and performed several songs with Doyle and the band.

This is the second time this year I have seen Doyle’s band perform in less than optimal circumstances. In June, at a little fairgrounds in Michigan, a tornado warning was called and the fairgrounds emptied for at least an hour. When that hour ended, Doyle’s band shook themselves off and performed a wonderful set of music under a little shelter for the people that remained. Many bands would have loaded up and left, but not Doyle.

I regret his retirement for myself and other fans, but not for Doyle. He has brought so much to the Gospel and bluegrass world, and he deserves a chance to reset and do things other than run the roads.

Last night’s show was exceptional and right on point. It showcased some a cappella Gospel music for which Doyle has been well known, and much straight ahead hard driving bluegrass.

I will never forget it and I’m sure everyone in the crowd felt the same.

Just do a little search, many people were posting live videos and it gives you a taste of how it felt to be there.

Happy retirement, Doyle!”

I couldn’t put it any better.

There were many special guests in the audience. Twenty plus members of Doyle’s family, Kyle Cantrell, Dan Hayes, Jerry and Erin Salley, Donna Ulisse and Rick Stanley, Cindy and Terry Baucom, to name a few.

Terry Baucom said, “I was at the first Quicksilver show and I was going to be at the last.”

Kyle posted on Facebook that “Doyle went out on top…”

Quicksilver’s final song was one of the best, Julie Ann.

I will always remember.

Rhonda Vincent will ring in the new year with Nothin’ Fancy, Sideline, Deeper Shade of Blue, and the Gibson Brothers.

Saturday is another big day with Justin Mason and Blue Night, Deeper Shade of Blue, The Grascals, The Gibson Brothers, and the Triumphant Quartet.

Join us on Jekyll Island for two more days of great music and warm weather.

Support your local music venues.