This year’s event info is being added daily, so check back often!
As many of us know, you can’t have a festival without music. Even if you’re not directly listening to it, it’s always creating a wonderful atmosphere to surround the ongoing events. The Highlands Festival is rich with a diverse sampling of arts and it’s no different when it comes to its music thanks to the Music Committee.
Held under a tent at the Farmer’s Market, every day features different musical genres ranging from Charleston to Celtic. Examples include country music on Thursday, beach music on Friday, and traditional and church music on Saturday and Sunday. And as the grand finale, the band Phantom performs, the most anticipated event of the Festival as they’ve performed at the Festival for many years. But these events aren’t just for professional performers. Volunteers from the area and outside of Virginia can sign up to play their own music in a single acoustic act. The variety of musical events allow people to enjoy many different kinds of music. Even if you end up not liking one particular style, with so many genres offered throughout the Festival, there’s a chance you’ll like at least one of them.
I was very active [in NACA], so I’ve participated in music and performing arts my whole life. – I.B. Dent
Friday, July 27, 2018 - 6:30 to 7:30pm
Gotta dance? Wanna learn? Join the Mountain Empire Shag Society and channel your inner Ann-Margret on the Pavilion Stage. Admission is free.Find out more »
Friday, July 27, 2018 - 7:30 to 9:30pm
Celebrate the premier concert of our 70th annual festival with The Beach Nite Band on Friday, July 27 at the Abingdon Farmer's Market! Warm up your smooth moves with dance lessons at 6:30PM, doors open at 7PM, and the music cranks up at 7:30PM.Find out more »
Saturday, July 28, 2018 - 6:30 to 10:15pm
An evening of traditional and contemporary Celtic music with three of the most fantastic bands to be found! The Appalachian Highlanders Pipe and Drum group will begin a "call to the Ceilidh" at 5:30 PM at the fountain across from Barter Theatre. Gates open at the pavilion at 6 PM. Music begins at 6:30 PM with Fire in the Kitchen followed by the Tartan Terrors from Canada making their debut appearance. Bringing our Ceilidh to a fun and rowdy dance party close will be contemporary band, Soulsha.Find out more »
Sunday, July 29, 2018 - 2:00 to 7:00pm
The Crooked Road: Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail concert celebrates the traditional music that has been kept by families and communities of Southwest Virginia since colonial times. Since the 1700s, settlers of this mountainous region brought together various musical traditions and styles, producing one of the richest musical traditions on earth. Admission is $1-3Find out more »
Songs that Tell a Story: Tracing the Passage of the Ballad Tradition from the British Isles to Appalachia
Event Date: Monday, July 30, 2018 - 7:30pm to 8:30pm Award-winning and Grammy-nominated music historian Ted Olson discusses the origins of Appalachian balladry on Monday, July 30, from 7:30pm-8:30pm in the auditorium at the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center. Discover how Old-World ballads—originating in the British Isles—were revived in Appalachia and how entirely new ballads emerged in the New World. Olson performs and interprets select recordings of ballads from the album he produced entitled Big Bend Killing: The Appalachian Ballad…Find out more »
Thursday, August 2, 2018 - 6:30 - 9:30pm
The Farmer’s Market will be jumping on Thursday, August 2, with a family-friendly night of Bluegrass music. The fun begins on stage at 6:30PM with The Lonesome Pine Bluegrass Band, a local band out of East Tennessee.Find out more »
Friday, August 3, 2018 - 7:30 to 10:30pm
Meet us for an energy-infused, soul-filled, rocking evening of music at the Farmer’s Market music tent! Shake Yo Money Maker, the fabulous duo of Lindsey Blackwell and Michael Litton, opens and closes the evening with blues-infused soul, funk, and a litttle bit of rock-n-roll. Fire up your soul with roof-raising vocals and acoustic guitar magic!Find out more »
Saturday, August 4, 2018 - 7:00 to 11:00pm
Lift your voice and celebrate with friends and family during an evening of karaoke on Saturday, August 4, from 7-11PM at the Community Center of Abingdon.Find out more »