Alright folks, its that time of year. It’s time to load up for the 2017 Wanee Music Festival! From Wednesday, April 19 through Saturday, April 22, the park will be over flowing with love, family, and the sweet sounds of some of the top names in the scene. This year’s lineup is stacked with some of the top acts in the scene. But this Wanee is much more than a great line-up, it’s a tribute to our friend Butch Trucks.
The loss of Butch Trucks hits close to home for the Suwannee community. From its first year in 2005 until 2014, Butch and the Allman Brothers Band hosted the festival, so this year we celebrate the life that brought so much joy to all of ours. In his honor, Wanee Wednesday has been dedicated to remembering Butch, and will be closed out by his own band, The Freight Train, with by Cody and Luther Dickinson and other special guests. With such close ties to the park and its family, this year’s Wanee could turn out much like 2012, where the memory of Levon Helm was carried through the weekend. Levon passed away the first day of the festival, and it seemed that every band smashed a Band cover during their set. It all built up to a final tribute jam hosted by the Allman Brothers Band, stacked high with sit-ins. Members of the North Mississippi Allstars, Furthur and Tedeschi Trucks (including Bobby and Susan themselves) all took the stage for a giant jam that ended with The Weight.
Aside from Freight Train, Wednesday will also see the Brothers & Sisters, Matt Reynolds, The Ben Sparaco Band, Crazy Fingers and the New Orleans Suspects. Thursday both the Brothers & Sisters and Crazy Fingers return to the Mushroom Stage, along with the Bobby Lee Rodgers Trio (who will return on the Peach Stage Friday and Saturday), Leftover Salmon (playing the music of Neil Young), Blackberry Smoke and DJ Logic. Dark Star Orchestra was open up the Peach Stage to close out the night. On Friday, the amphitheater will see Marcus King, Devon Allman, Jaimoe’s Jasssz Band, Turkuaz, Papadosio and Les Brers, while the Matisyahu, JJ Grey and Mofro, Bob Weir and the Campfire Band and Widespread Panic hold down the Peach Stage. And to on our last day, we will see the Yeti Trio, Kung Fu, Pink Talking Fish, Keller Williams Grateful Grass, and Pink Talking Fu (playing music of David Bowie and Prince) on the Mushroom Stage. Dr. John and the Nite Trippers, Gov’t Mule, Trey Anastasio will take the Peach, and Bob Weir will close out the festival.
I know Sweetwater 420 Fest boasts a very similar lineup, but downtown Atlanta will never come close to Suwannee. Tickets might cost less, but late night after-parties and lodging will drive the cost well above that of Wanee. So don’t hesitate, if you haven’t already, go ahead and purchase your tickets! Come out and celebrate the life of Butch Trucks, surround yourself in the most positive and loving environment you can find, dance away your troubles and feel the magic of the SOSMP.