We are very excited to be participating in the Festival for the Eno this year. Spanning two days, July 4th and July 7th, the Eno River festival promises to be a treasure-trove of excellent local talent (with a few choice visitors too!), musicmakers and craftmakers alike.
We have taken some time to go through the entire festival schedule to put together some recommendations for those of you who are planning to attend. Even if you’re not going to be there, we strongly urge you to check out these acts!
Staff Picks Part One–July 4th
Charles Latham–10AM at Meadow Stage
One of the first acts to play at the Festival for the Eno this year, the Durham-based singer-songwriter should be a transcendental way to start the day. Introspective and ethereal, Latham’s music captures a wide range of the human experience.
Violet Bell–12:15PM at Grove Stage
A string duo–guitar and fiddle–Lizzy and Omar are both incredibly skilled musicians with a positively delightful stage presence–something to which we can personally attest as we covered Violet Bell at their recent residency at Arcana. You can listen to our chat on the Raw Bites Sessions as well. One of the most promising nouveau indie acts in the area, Violet Bell is an absolute pleasure to behold.
Lightnin Wells–1PM at Grove Stage; 3:15PM at Chimney Stage
A long-time local icon and keeper of the traditions of local folk music, Lightnin Wells is a must-see. From 1920s blues and folk to the ever-popular Piedmont style, Lightnin’s performances are an ode to the local musicians of old and an opportunity for the present day audience to glide through time with a man who is as much a performer as he is a living archive.
The Birdhorse–1:30PM at Chimney Stage
Toni Hartley is enchanting. Her sophomore album, Fool’s Adventure, released in March of this year, is a big hit here at Durham Beat. Recently featured in our collective long-form album review column, TL;DR Reviews, Fool’s Adventure is a nature walk through a forest of human emotion. We are beyond excited to see Hartley perform live and to experience her lovely voice in person.
Chatham Rabbits–2:30PM at Chimney Stage
A local folk duo rocking banjo and acoustic guitar, Sarah and Austin bring to the stage a reverence for traditional folk music with a flair for the contemporary. Formed back in 2013, Chatham Rabbits have been gracing stages across the South, bringing with them a genial sound and North Carolina roots. This set promises feel-good vibes and a whole lot of dancing.
War Twins–3:30PM at River Stage
One of the few non-local acts to make the staff picks list here–War Twins embody the spirit of rock n’ roll. Their new album American Kids is a profound culmination of diligence and dreams. Gaetana and James got their start years ago in Boston where The Editor, who was working as Managing Editor at Quiet Lunch Magazine at the time, featured them (known as Little War Twins then) in her column The First Act. Several column inches, tours, and life events later, this unexpected reunion at the Eno River promises to be a fervent display of American rock n’ roll in its newest and truest form.
Boom Unit Brass Band–4:30PM at River Stage
It’s hard to go wrong with a brass band. A multi-instrumental ensemble from Chapel Hill, Boom Unit Brass Band is composed of highly skilled musicians, many of whom participate in other local projects. This set promises to be noisy, fun, and inspired.
Simone Finally–4:45PM at Chimney Stage
A Durham-based musician, Simone Finally is one woman with a guitar and a lyrically-driven style. Since stumbling upon her music recently, I have been camping out on her SoundCloud page. Another lovely voice to be sure, Simone’s set will be a most enjoyable way to end day one at the Festival for the Eno.
Be sure to check out the full lineup for July 4th at the Eno. A number of local craft vendors will be onsite as well. The folks at Festival for the Eno have compiled a complete list. If you’re going to be at the festival, then we look forward to seeing you there. If not, then tune into our Twitter and Instagram pages and follow along with our coverage! Stay tuned for our July 7th picks later this week!
Featured Image courtesy of Festival for the Eno and Eno River Association.