San Francisco’s Hardly Strictly Bluegrass was supposed to welcome fans back to its longtime home of Golden Gate Park to celebrate its 20th anniversary this fall. Like the rest of the live events industry, however, the long-running free Bay Area music festival which celebrates American roots music won’t be able to take place in person this year, and event organizers are instead looking to bring music to fans with the Let the Music Play On all-star webcast event scheduled for Saturday, October 3rd.

The three-hour broadcast will feature a mix of archive footage from the festival’s first 19 years, fan-submitted memories, and new performance footage and interviews from 30+ artists from Bonnie Raitt, Emmylou Harris, Aaron Lee Tasjan, Buddy Miller, Fantastic NegritoShakey Graves, Ashley Monroe Rhiannon Giddens, Yola, John Doe, The War and Treaty, and more. The new performances were filmed over the spring and summer months in locations ranging from Nashville to Ireland.

“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,” Buddy Miller said in reflection of the long-running event in a press statement. “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.”

Speaking of The McCrary Sisters, Live For Live Music is thrilled to share new video interview footage of the gospel trio ahead of Saturday’s webcast. Watch them discuss how music is key to keeping our minds clear and at peace in these loud and unpredictable times below:

The McCrary Sisters – Let The Music Play On Interview

[Video: Hardly Strictly Bluegrass]

The one-time-only Let the Music Play On webcast will be free for all to watch, and viewers are encouraged to donate what they can to the event’s charitable partners, Artist Relief, an emergency relief fund that provides up to $5,000 grants for artists facing dire financial emergencies during the ongoing pause of the live events industry. The announcement shared by organizers revealed that the festival has already donated $1 million to Artist Relief for musicians across the country to benefit from immediately.

Fans can tune in to Let the Music Play On on October 3rd beginning at 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT on Circle TV, Nugs.TV, and the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Facebook page and website.


Before and after Hardly Strictly Bluegrass’s Let The Music Play On streaming event on Saturday October 3rd, music fans can tune in to Democracy Comes Alive: A Virtual Festival To Get Out The Vote, featuring members of the Grateful DeadPhishThe String Cheese Incident, and 50+ more. For more information or to secure your link to the show, head here.