Merlefest Day 1

Here’s a day 1 report on Merlefest 2011 from Georgia Lowrance. She has promised us daily updates, with photos, from her position on the ground in Wilkesboro.

Finally the day had arrived. Today was the first day of Merlefest 2011, the 24th annual homecoming music celebration held in memory of Eddy Merle Watson.

This year’s line up is loaded with tons of favorite artist that return annually along with the addition of some first time appearances of some big headlining names. Storms passed through town last night but you wouldn’t know it today. The sun came out to greet the music fans who have traveled from all over the world to enjoy the annual festival which is nestled in the beautiful mountains of NC.

One of my favorite performances earlier this afternoon was Scythian (sith-ee-yin). They first came to Merlefest a few years back and have been a hit ever since. Scythian’s energetic infectious performance of Irish, Celtic, klezmer, and gypsy influences is guaranteed to get you dancing, dancing and dancing some more.

As nightfalls and the crisp fresh night air rolls in, Randy Travis takes the stage. This was his first year in attendance at Merlefest and the crowd was happy to show their love for him. For “Colder Weather” and back by popular demand was the Grammy award winning Zac Brown Band.

And this is just opening day! Can’t wait for the next three days and the performers to come. And if you really find a favorite performer or two, it’s not unusual to hear them perform at other venues during the festival. More tomorrow…