Next weekend, August 2nd-4th, Rhythms on the Rio will return to its home along the banks of the Rio Grande River in South Fork, Colorado. The long-running music festival is entering its 14th year, and the three-night charity event will celebrate with one of its best lineups to date.
Musically, Rhythms on the Rio has curated a standout lineup tailored to the Colorado crowd. Favorites connected to the bluegrass scene are scattered across its 2019 lineup, offering ample opportunity for sit-ins and collaboration. Portland folk-rockers Fruition top the bill alongside The Travelin’ McCourys (slated to perform a traditional and a guest-laden Grateful Dead tribute set), The Larry Keel Experience (featuring special guests Jeremy Garrett of The Infamous Stringdusters and Kyle Tuttle of Jeff Austin Band), and The Kyle Hollingsworth Band. The event also features Kyle Hollingsworth’s brother-in-arms in String Cheese Incident’s Bill Nershi, who will serve as the artist-at-large on Saturday.
However, Rhythms on the Rio eschews the label of a “bluegrass festival.” While some of the best pickers in the scene will be in attendance, the producers have recruited plenty of other artists with offerings outside the genre. For example, Dirty Dozen Brass Band will offer their brand of high-energy New Orleans horns during their headlining Sunday night set, while the charismatic funk-jammers of The Main Squeeze top Friday’s lineup before Kyle Hollingsworth Band’s headlining slot. Furthermore, a strong presence of local and regional favorites spanning musical categories looks to bring artists like Wood Belly and Gasoline Lollipops into the fold as well.
Outside of the music, Rhythms on the Rio continues to solidify its reputation as one of the best smaller festivals in the state with its attention to the fan experience overall. This year, the event will host the third-annual “Buses on the Rio,” with almost 100 vintage Volkswagon buses making the mecca to the festival’s gorgeous southern-Colorado venue. Across the weekend, the buses will serve as the host site for various events, ranging from a tie-dye expo on Saturday to “Breakfast with the Buses” on Sunday morning.
Most importantly, Rhythms on the Rio sets itself apart with its mission. The festival is hosted by the South Fork Music Association, a volunteer-run organization that uses its proceeds to help local school districts purchase and repair students’ instruments. For more information and to buy tickets, head to the event’s website here.
Rhythms on the Rio 2018 Recap
[Video: Music All Inclusive]