Telluride Bluegrass Festival | Emilee Ramseur

Every June, thousands of people from all over the country flock to the magical mountains of Telluride, Colorado to attend the 4-day Telluride Bluegrass Festival. Last year was my first year attending and it’s safe to say that I am now hooked. This year’s festival spanned from June 20th to Jun 23rd. I only bought a one-day festival pass this time so I could get some hiking in as well, but the performances on the Friday I was there really packed the punch.

Molly Tuttle was the first act I saw that afternoon. At only 25 years old, she recently won the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Guitar Player of the Year and this was her first year playing at Telluride. Her folky voice combined with her stellar acoustic guitar skills was the perfect way to start off the day. 

Lake Street Dive held the prime afternoon slot and these rising stars had the whole crowd on their feet from the very first song. If you haven’t heard them before, do yourself a favor and check out their songs “Good Kisser,” and “You Go Down Smooth.”

As the sun was starting to set, Bela Fleck & the Flecktones took the stage. I had never heard of them before, which offended the veteran bluegrass fans next to me, but I was quickly impressed and the entire crowd was loving it. They were the perfect band to perform leading up to the main act. 

Greensky Bluegrass opened with “Past My Prime” and played a good mix of their top hits and old jams. That was my third time seeing them live and it my favorite performance by them yet. I unfortunately did not get tickets for their NightGrass show (artists perform at smaller venues around town after the festival ends each night, and it’s dubbed “NightGrass”) but apparently their performance at The Palm Theater was one for the books.

Telluride Bluegrass is truly something special and I’m already getting excited about heading back next year! 

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