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Hardly Strictly Bluegrass
Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Fast Facts

When: Friday, September 29 to Sunday, October 1, 2023

Where: Golden Gate Park, San Francisco -- To Golden Gate Park By Bus, Rail or Ferry

Fans can look forward to another awesome lineup when Hardly Strictly Bluegrass returns to Golden Gate Park in San Francisco for a hoedown of epic proportions.

After COVID forced several virtual online concerts in the past, HSB returned last year for it's first in-person concert in three years!

This year, HSB is back again in its 23rd year -- nnd better than ever with a free three-day concert series from Friday, September 29 to Sunday, October 1, 2023.

Artists scheduled to perform this year include singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright, country singer Steve Earle, jazz-pop musician Rickie Lee Jones, and perennial HSB favorite Emmy Lou Harris.

Joining them will be Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, cellist Leyla McCalla, Australian alt-rockers the Church, and the John Doe Folk Trio.

Singer-songwriter Valerie June; blues guitarist Christone “Kingfish” Ingram, anf comedic singer John Craigie will be adding to the mix, together with retro-soul musician Neal Francis, Canadian indie-rock band Bahamas, and Guatemalan composer Gaby Moreno.

Jason Isbell headlines at
Hardly Strictly Bluegrass in 2023.

More artists in the 2023 HSB lineup will include singer-songwriter Kurt Vile, Chuck Prophet & the Mission Express, alt-band Lucero, and Grammy winners the Travelin' McCourys. They will be joined by Austin singer-songwriter Carrie Rodriguez. Chemical Brothers collaborator Beth Orton, Nashville songwriter Lilly Hiatt, Appalachian banjo player Nora Brown, roots supergroup Mighty Poplar, and blues guitarist Buffalo Nichols.

And wait. There's more! The latest acts added to the lineup include Brooklyn disco-soul act Say She She, bluegrass musician Sierra Hull, singer-songwriter Margo Cilker, Tuareg performer Bombino, retro country singer Brennen Leigh, R&B act Thee Sacred Souls, and the Soul Queen of New Orleans, Irma Thomas. along with Teskey Brothers; indie artist M. Ward; Austin folk musician Shakey Graves; vocalist Syd Straw; the Swiss Latin instrumental band Hermanos Gutierrez; classic country musician Eilen Jewell; the Bay Area jazz trio SticklerPhonics; and Brooklyn roots rock group the Lone Bellow.

Just up ahead, check out more details, information, and fun facts about the weekend-long music fest in Golden Gate Park:

2023 Hardly Strictly Bluegrass set times


Arrow Stage (Hellman Hollow)
1:45 p.m. Buffalo Nichols
3:20 p.m. Purple Glaze
5 p.m. Lily Haitt
Banjo Stage (Hellman Hollow)
1 p.m. Della Mae
2:30 p.m. Carrie Rodriguez
4:05 p.m. Peter Rowan
5:50 p.m. Thee Sacred Souls
Horseshoe Hill (McClaren Pass)
2:35 p.m. Cassandra Lewis
4:10 p.m. Margo Cilker
6:05 p.m. Skyway Man
Swan Stage (Lindley Meadow)
1:45 p.m. Vetiver
3:20 p.m. John Craigie
5:05 p.m. Shakey Graves
Towers of Gold Stage (Lindley Meadow)
1 p.m. Orchestra Gold
2:30 p.m. Christone “Kingfish” Ingram
4:10 p.m. Lucero
6 p.m. Dawes


Arrow Stage (Hellman Hollow)

12 p.m. deadramones
1:35 p.m. Syd Straw
3:15 p.m. Olivia Wolf
4:55 p.m. Bombino
Banjo Stage (Hellman Hollow)
11:10 a.m. Dry Branch Fire Squad
12:45 p.m. Laurie Lewis & The Right Hands
2:20 p.m. Jimmie Dale Gilmore
4 p.m. Rickie Lee Jones
5:45 p.m. Steve Earle & The Dukes
Rooster Stage (Marx Meadow)
11 a.m. The Go To Hell Man Band
Buddy Miller’s Cavalcade of Stars
12:30 p.m. McCrary Sisters
12:40 p.m. Brennen Leigh
1:20 p.m. McCrary Sisters
1:45 p.m. Shawn Camp & Verlon Thompson
2:30 p.m. McCrary Sisters
3:05 p.m. Bettye Lavette
4:10 p.m. McCrary Sisters
4:25 p.m. Buddy Miller
6 p.m. Irma Thomas
Horseshoe Hill (McClaren Pass)
11:40 a.m. Lila Blue
1:15 p.m. City Lights Poetry with Tongo Elsen-Martin, Kim Addonizio and Evan Kennedy
2:55 p.m. Nora Brown with Stephanie Coleman
4 p.m. The SticklerPhonics
Swan Stage (Lindley Meadow)
11 a.m. Sunny War
12:25 p.m. Hermanos Gutiérrez
2:05 p.m. Bahamas
3:50 p.m. The Third Mind
5:55 p.m. The Church
Towers of Gold Stage (Lindley Meadow)
11:40 a.m. Dustbowl Revival
1:15 p.m. Lela McCalla
2:55 p.m. The Teskey Brothers
4:50 p.m. The Lone Bellow


Arrow Stage (Hellman Hollow)

12:10 p.m. Marco & the Polos
1:45 p.m. Taylor McCall
3:30 p.m. Big Richard
4:55 p.m. Tommy Emmanuel
Banjo Stage (Hellman Hollow)
11:20 a.m. Sierra Hull
12:55 p.m. Gaby Moreno
2:30 p.m. Travelin’ McCourys
4:15 p.m. Rufus Wainwright
5:45 p.m. Emmylou Harris
Rooster Stage (Marx Meadow)
11 a.m. Jon Langford & The Bright Shiners
12:10 p.m. Eilen Jewell
1:35 p.m. Chuck Prophet
3:05 p.m. Beth Orton
4:35 p.m. M. Ward
6 p.m. Mighty Poplar
Horseshoe Hill (McClaren Pass)
11:40 a.m. Raining Chainsaws
1:15 p.m. Layla McCalla
2:55 p.m. Doc Watson at 100 featuring Mitch Greenhill, Jack Lawrence, Nora Brown & Stephanie Coleman
4:45 p.m. Never Come Down
Swan Stage (Lindley Meadow)
11 a.m. Say She She
12:25 p.m. John Doe Folk Trio
2:05 p.m. Valerie June
3:45 p.m. The Jerry Douglas Band
5:55 p.m. Kurt Vile
Towers of Gold Stage (Lindley Meadow)
11:40 a.m. The Heavy Heavy
1:15 p.m. New Monsoon
2:55 p.m. Neal Francis
4:45 p.m. Jason Isbell

All about HSB

Along with Fleet Week, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass is one of the most anticipated Fall events in San Francisco featuring the best strummin', pickin' and fiddle playin' on the planet.

But is the HSB festival just bluegrass?

As the name implies — not hardly. The three-day music fest traditionally features live performances by some of the most popular traveling country, folk, and rock 'n roll acts in the USA.

Who :
The complete Hardly Strictly Bluegrass lineup and list of special performances will be announced in September 2023.

When : Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 2023 is scheduled for Friday, September 29, Saturday, September 30, and Sunday, October 1

Look for the festivities to kick off with continuous performances beginning from 11AM on Friday, and at 9AM throughout the rest of a beautiful fall weekend in San Francisco.

Where :
The concerts traditionally take at Golden Gate Park with signs pointing the way to the various concert stages in Hellman Hollow (formerly Speedway Meadows), Marx Meadow and Lindley Meadow.

Ticket Information:
No tickets needed. It's all free!

What else to see and do at HSB:
Sit back, relax, people watch, or enjoy a popular array of food from vendors ranging from tacos and teriyaki to American barbecue.

DID YOU KNOW? Hardly Strictly Bluegrass fun facts

Warren Hellman by Ron Baker
HSB founder Warren Hellman.

• The original idea was Strictly Bluegrass, conceived in 2001 by San Francisco billionaire venture capitalist Warren Hellman, himself a bluegrass musician. The one-day event featured a single stage, 12 bands (including Emmy Lou Harris, Allison Krause and Hazel Dickens) and attracted 5,000 attendees.

• In 2004, it was Emmy Lou Harris who convinced Hellman to add "Hardly" to the name so she could be free to perform in other music genres. And the rest, as they say, is Hardly Strictly Bluegrass history.

• Today, the three-day event attracts about 750,000 people or almost equal to the total size of San Francisco's population.

• Along with thousands of regional bands from across the US, other notable names to appear on the HSB lineup over the years have included Bonnie Raitt, Elvis Costello, Steve Martin, Sturgill Simpson, Gillian Welch, T Bone Burnett, Merle Haggard, Chris Isaak, and Randy Newman.

• In the world of music festivals, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass is unique -- its all free, and free of corporate sponsorship.

More about Hardly Strictly Bluegrass around the Web:

Just up ahead, check out more information on this year's music festivities around the web, plus tips on where to stay if you're spending the weekend:

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 2023
- Dates, times and the complete lineup with a look back at previous concerts dating back to 2001.

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass - Wikipedia - Check out a good overview of the music festival with historical notes, a list of frequent performers and photos. - Hardly Strictly Bluegrass - If you're traveling to San Francisco for the big event, check out the closest hotels with visitor reviews and ratings.

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