Americana Fest Wraps up on a High Note

Andrew Combs. Photo: Lorie Liebig

The last full night of music was packed with great performances from impressive up-and-comers at Americana Fest in Nashville.

Acclaimed singer-songwriter Josh Rouse kicked off the night inside the Mercy Lounge. The singer-songwriter, who has an entire album named after the Music City, wowed the crowd with his energetic style that comes from years of practice and performing. Ritter left behind some big shoes to fill for the following artists that night, almost all of which were younger and lesser known.

Following Rouse was no challenge for Nashville-based artist Andrew Combs, who drew a big and attentive crowd for his performance at the Mercy Lounge. Starting with the infectious track "Foolin'", Combs sped through a number of cuts from his latest album, All These Dreams. With an impressive set of songs under his belt and great stage presence, it's no wonder why he's one of the most talked about up-and-coming Americana artists this year.

Portland-based band Horse Feathers' neo-folk sound won over those festival attendees who longed for a more old-school Americana sound. With haunting harmonies and plucky banjo, their sound is a mixture of bluegrass ballads with an alternative edge.

In East Nashville, Kelsey Waldon kept it country with her stellar set at the Five Spot. Playing a mixture of tracks from her full-length, The Goldmine, along with a slew of brand new tracks, Waldon inspired a few two-steps as she channeled a little bit of Loretta into her modern version of traditional country music.

Just before the midnight hour, many worn-out festival-goers began to file out of the High Watt. Many were stopped in their tracks by Lilly Hiatt, who wrapped up the night with a stellar set. Although it was late, Hiatt kept the energy high as she let her raspy voice and heartfelt lyrics do all the talking.

Although at times chaotic and overwhelming, AmericanaFest provided an incredible opportunity to see some of the best and most promising artists in the genre.

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Americana Fest Wraps up on a High Note