Festival season is upon us and, in a coincidence that is not unprecedented, two of the titans of the field transpire on the same weekend. The folkcentric-but-adventurous-and-inclusive Clearwater Festival takes to scenic Croton Point on the weekend of June 15 and 16. Since its quite substantial initial announcement, the Clearwater lineup has been augmented…quite substantially! Mavis Staples joins Ani DiFranco and the Wailers on the marquee. Other adds include new folk standouts Birds of Chicago, Chapin McCombs Chapin, a folk trio featuring the devilishly good indie songwriter Cass McCombs and a couple of folk-royalty Chapin sisters, Lily and Abigail. Railroad Earth is one of the most popular pop-leaning folk acts of the last decade.
Two of the locals on the bill – the Mammals and the Big Takeover – have national reputations big enough to be offended by the word “local,” but I can’t help where they’re from. The lineup adds have really elevated this festival to “must-see” status for anyone interested in the current state of culturally and politically potent folk and roots music in the tradition of and under the auspices of the great Pete Seeger. Weekend passes run from $100 to $155, day passes from $65 to $90. There are, of course, add-ons such as camping and sails aboard the Clearwater. For the full schedule and pricing options, visit the lucid and vivid festival website.
Clearwater Festival, Saturday/Sunday, June 15/16, Croton Point Park, 1A Croton Point Ave., Croton-on-Hudson, www.clearwaterfestival.org