Lockn' Festival 2017 | Day 4 in Virginia

Article Contributed by L. Paul Mann | Published on Monday, September 4, 2017

Clouds rolled into the final day of Lockn’ cooling the summer sun and creating a pleasant last day for the festival. Collaborations abounded on the last day much to the delight of music fans who stuck it out for the nearly none stop four-day musical jam. This year Lockn’s audience was nothing other than exuberant, cheerful and respectful. The multigenerational crowd seemed almost like a giant extended family on a huge holiday picnic. Costumes and clothes included classic 60’s psychedelia all the way up to modern EDM inspired outfits. The nearly perfect weather and easy access to food drinks and facilities also kept the road in high spirits. But it was the unique musical experience of Lockn’ that was the real cause for celebration.

The Remix stage began early with a traditional Gospel inspired set by Keller Williams. It was a decidedly different set than that of his previous main stage set and was a testament to his diverse musical prowess. He was followed by local Virginia band Anthony Rosano and The Conqueroos. The bluesy band features, Rosano on vocals, guitar and mandolin, Jeremy 'JB' Bustillos on harmonica and sax, Paul Warren on bass and Scott Smith on drums. The band got the crowd in a rocking mood early on.

The magic of Lockn' staple player Eric Krasno of Lettuce and Soulive fame was on display next. The master guitarist has played at Lockn’ and across the world in countless impromptu jam bands. This year at Lockn’ he showcased the talents of his new band, with songs from his latest solo album, Blood From A Stone. He also played a killer cover of the Jimi Hendrix classic, Manic Depression.

The music took another turn when the New Orleans veteran jazz group, The Dirty Dozen Brass Band took the stage. Their funky horn driven sound inspired a dance party in front of the stage. It was too bad that none of the main stage artists plugged into their incredible energy and utilized them in collaboration, but the played a great set nonetheless.

The Relix stage closed out in mid-afternoon with classic California rockers Moonalice, with legendary Airplaine/Hot Tuna guitarist, Jorma Kaukonen joining them for some incredible jamming. Last year Kaukonen was on hand at Lockn’ to play two sets. He played one acoustic set with his long-time band mate Jack Casady. Later he led a jam along with Casady of Airplane classics. This year with Moonalice they played some classic covers including a resounding version of “Eight Miles High."

The Record Company opened the main stage in the late afternoon with an explosive rock laden set. Much like the John Butler Trio who played the day before, the mighty Los Angles trio got the crowd swaying and dancing right from the start of their set. Chris Vos, Alex Stiff, and Mark Cazorla blasted through a set of original material and a hair-raising cover of the Beastie Boys' Sabotage. The music switched to southern swamp rock with the appearance of the next band, Florida’s JJ Grey and Mofro. Fronted by the multi-instrumentalist and singer songwriter Grey, the band played a funky set of material from their long playlist.

The music took an entirely different turn with the appearance next of Margo Price and her band. The singer led the group through a set of traditional Nashville country tunes, making for a pleasant afternoon show. New Orleans rockers The Revivalists appeared for an exciting sunset show next. Fronted by animated singer David Shaw, the band played one of the most energetic sets of the festival. The band played much off their 2015 album Men Against Mountains. They ended their set fittingly with a cover of The Beatles' With A Little Help From My Friends, with Shaw signing the vocals much like the gravel voice legend, Joe Cocker.

The Godfather of Lockn’ Phil Lesh made an appearance on the main stage next with jam band moe. Lesh and the band played a set list including moe. tunes, and Dead classics. The performance included a steady list of special guests including, Lesh’s son Grahame Lesh, members of The Revivalists, and finally Bob Weir and Nicki Bluhm. The set took on a very personal note when the musicians revealed that Rob Derhak (moe. bassist) was not at the festival because he was in treatment for cancer. All the special guests wished the bassist well. Ending with several Grateful Dead classics, including Sugar Magnolia, which was a real crowd pleaser.

The final round of the festival featured The Avett Brothers with their take on traditional North Carolina Bluegrass rock music. The band played fiercely for the first hour of their set before inviting Bob Weir to join them for six songs including a two-song encore. Weir took a while to acclimate on stage becoming visibly disturbed by a malfunctioning monitor. After getting little help from the roadies, he ended up in shoving it around out of his sight. But the distraction was soon forgotten, and the iconic guitarist then played flawlessly for the six-song finale.

Check out more photos from Sunday @ Lockn' 2017.