Get Big Ears Festival Tickets here!

Big Ears Festival Contest Alert! Congrats to Matt James our Grand Prize winner of 2 festival passes for Big Ears Festival 2018 and a $40 Gift Card to The Tomato Head !!! Congrats to Matthew Kelly our runner-up! Winning 2 single day passes to Big Ears Festival 2018 #BigEarsKnox Check out the daily Big Ears Festival schedules right here. Get your tickets today! Featuring … Medeski Martin & Wood,  Rostam,  Jerry Douglas !!! Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda !!! and more.  The Daily schedule is now available.

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VIDEO Medeski Martin and Wood Live

VIDEO Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn

VIDEO Anoushka Shankar


Jig & Reel Experiences at Big Ears
Free & Open to the Public

Jig & Reel will be home to all things Appalachian during the festival weekend, with all performances and artist talks free and open to the public! Explore the delectable lineup of programming at Jig & Reel and get excited to stomp your feet, expand your mind, and join in the celebration of traditional mountain music!

THURSDAY: Join us for a late-night Old Time Session hosted by Anna & Elizabeth, which will continue until the early hours of the morning!

FRIDAY: Dedicated to both the preservation of traditional music and the creation of new, hard-driving fiddle tunes, The Local Honeys will share their sweet bluegrass sounds with us. Next up will be two special workshops led by percussive dance duo Kristin Andreassen and Becky Hill. Their Percussive Dance & Clogging Workshop will teach you basic clogging footwork, with a body percussion pattern and Appalachian ballad. Soon after, they’ll teach some easy square dances, sing a few songs, and share Appalachian flatfooting and clogging steps at their Old Time House Party. Rounding out the new additions is a performance from East Tennessee-based acoustic group Circus No.9, who will bring their delicious mix of bluegrass, jazz, and rock to Big Ears. Rounding out the evening will be a late-night Irish Session hosted by Sam Amidon & Cleek Schrey. Stay up late with us — It will be Friday night, after all!


SATURDAY: Don’t miss a very special Conversation with Ben Ratliff, Laurel Halo, and Eli Keszler, where the celebrated author and journalist will discuss the pair’s work and projects. Bruce Greene & Kore Loy McWhirter will treat us to an intimate live performance of their traditional songs, ballads, fiddle tunes, and banjo tunes from the southern Appalachians. Keep the Appalachian spirit going by joining in the Bluegrass Jam hosted by Stan Sharp!

SUNDAY: Make sure to attend Field Recordings: Art & Archivist, a conversation between Anna Roberts-Gevalt, Nathan Salsburg (curator of the Alan Lomax Archive), and West Virginia State Folklorist Emily Hillard. The trio will share intriguing pieces from their vast and venerable collections, and will discuss the role of old recordings and folkloric research in an expanding creative understanding about listening, environmental sounds as music, and music’s connection to place and culture.



Pilot Light Presents
Free & Open to the Public

We’re partnering with The Pilot Light, Knoxville’s home for independent and experimental music, to host a series of shows throughout the festival weekend that are free and open to the public. From Thursday to Saturday, The Pilot Light will be your destination for killer sets from bands like Asheville psychedelic outfit Nest Egg, to secret shows from very special Big Ears guests, to a Hologram Lab with hands-on demo stations where festival goers can try out Hologram Electronics’ experimental guitar pedal effects in person, and so much more. Check the details here.



Music For 2 Radios
Visit Knoxville Visitors Center / Saturday, March 24 / 2pm & 2:30pm

Explore the FM airwaves with Ben Shemie (SUUNS) through his radiophonic piece Music for 2 Radios. We’re engaging local radio stations 89.9FM WDVX and 90.3FM WUTK to bring Shemie’s radio wave soundscape from their transmitters to your ears. Each radio station will simultaneously broadcast part of the piece and audiences are invited to tune in to each radio station at the same time to hear the performance.

The performance will require two FM radios: one tuned to 90.3FM and one tuned to 89.9FM. Swing by the Beats & Eats food truck oasis and stop into the WDVX Studios located at the Visit Knoxville Visitors Center to join the listening party. We encourage guests to bring their own battery-operated FM radios. This will be a uniquely Knoxville experience, broadcasted by locally owned radio stations for the people in Knoxville — never to be rebroadcasted or released.


Big Table Brunch

Have you secured your tickets yet to experience a mouthwatering culinary treat before the music starts on Saturday of the festival? We’re hosting a collaborative brunch experience curated by Matt Gallaher (of Knox Mason and EMILIA) and Shaun and Meg Parrish (Wild Love Bakehouse) celebrating Southern culture and culinary arts in Knoxville on March 24 at The Mill & Mine from 10:30am until noon. Don’t miss out!

These tickets are available for $50.00+fees as an add-on during your festival pass purchasing process. Click here to explore ticket options!

Big Ears Beer Exchange

The annual Big Ears Beer Exchange returns to Suttree’s for its fourth installment Saturday, March 24 at 1pm. Co-hosted by friends of the festival Charles and Bruce Gearhart along with George Talley and the Suttree’s team, this year’s exchange will also feature a special appearance by Blackberry Farm Brewery’s Roy Milner, who will be on hand to share his passion for beer and some special brews from the award winning Blackberry Farm Brewery. Featuring rare, hard-to-find, and unique beers, the exchange will also highlight local Knoxville breweries including Pretentious Beer CompanyCrafty Bastard Brewery, and others. Learn more here!