Neighborhood Hero Saves The Day Again

Article Contributed by Tyler Eck | Published on Tuesday, September 15, 2015

In the wake of an awful set of circumstances, faced with the possibility of a non-existent fall music extravaganza, the fabulous folk of Deadhead Productions have again stepped up to the plate with their announcement of Hillberry 2: The Harvest Moon Festival.  Earlier this year we told you all about the 1st Hillberry Music Festival that occurred this August on the Farm outside Eureka Springs, Arkansas… well party people, get ready to do it all over again!  

Just a few hours before the official announcement of the fate of phases, rumors on the internet were abound that the Midwest may be slightly lack luster in the fall festival department.  Regardless of the reasons, nothing is standing in the way of Hillberry 2: The Harvest Moon Festival as the opening line on the Facebook event states: “THIS EVENT WILL NOT BE CANCELLED!”  Even this is music to our ears.

The lineup shows that not only do the organizers have the backs of patrons, but of performers too.  Artists that were scheduled to play phases were left scrambling to fill dates and connect tour dots. Thankfully many of those performers landed on the Hillberry 2: The Harvest Moon lineup and now have a stellar venue to visit later this fall. The first installment of headliners included Leftover Salmon, Lettuce, Wookiefoot, The Motet, and a Jerry Garcia Tribute by Larry Keels and his All-Star ensemble. A 2nd installment proclaimed ALO would join their ranks as well and announced several other performers.

Rounding out the OBESE lineup are Louisiana’s folk, rock, gypsy, punk ensemble, Dirtfoot, which I liken to a fusion of all things rough and lovely. Wildman and Festival Fanatic, Andy Frasco and The U.N. will surely fuel something so raucous there will be a new rule about it… which will probably be broken next year. A reunion by Don’t Stop Please, a modern local legend that transcends genre labels will have you saying their name by the end of the weekend.

Often starting reggae and ending sets in a psychedelic fusion, Jon Wayne and The Pain isn’t to be missed. Portland’s up and coming alternative country ensemble, Fruition, will serve up a homemade slice of wholesome Americana music.  Tyrannosaurus Chicken, who closed out the inaugural Hillberry Festival last month in a southern/delta blues raging ramble have become a regular staple and we are glad to see them back on the Farm.  The Rumpke Mountain Boys with their special blend of self-proclaimed ‘trashgrass’ are also back for a second time this year. 

The Farm. This little piece of heaven is right outside the bustling Eureka Springs, Arkansas and has many amenities including bathhouses (not included in ticket), and shuttles to The General Store for packaged beverages and camping supplies. 360 degree views from the site located on the top of a mountain with only a few other mountain tops in sight give way to the feeling of being perched in an eagles nest with the Mark Twain National Forest at your back. Most of the venue is suited for car camping in a well kempt field with wooded area in the back perfect for hammocking (no car parking allowed, drop offs only) .

Near the back of the venue is a secluded, yet frequently visited shrine to the late Jerry Garcia that pulls a different emotion out of every visitor. I noticed how quiet groups were once they arrived. Even with camera in hand and at the ready, I felt intrusive and inappropriate taking photos while patrons visited The Shrine. There is something truly powerful here.

A pre-party at Georges Majestic Lounge on October 10th with local favorites: Arkansauce, The Squarshers, and Opal Agafia & the Sweet Nothings will get things started and sooth anticipations while we wait. I look forward to seeing you all on the Farm this October for the Midwest’s brand new event: Hillberry 2: The Harvest Moon Music Festival!

Until then enjoy this clip of Leftover Salmon the last time they visited Northwest Arkansas with Andy Thorn ‘over easy’.