Big Ears Fest announces line-up

Regarded as one of the most unique, boundary-defying and eagerly anticipated cultural gatherings in the world – “a music festival with a rare vision” (The New York Times) – the Big Ears Festival returns in 2018 with perhaps its most multi-faceted and diverse line up to date. Spanning four days – Thursday, March 22, 2018 through Sunday, March 25 – the festival will again feature over 100 performances in venues throughout downtown Knoxville, Tennessee, from the city’s historic theaters and churches to clubs, galleries, warehouses and listening rooms, along with some surprise locations.

As always, the Big Ears Festival experience is curated to lure audiences into an unfolding, kaleidoscopic musical adventure. Swinging traditional jazz, mesmerizing fiddle tunes, plaintive ballads and rousing spirituals will be heard alongside atmospheric orchestral textures, hypnotic electronics, North African trance music and bold flights of sonic imagination.

“I think this year’s festival may have more depth and breadth than ever before,” says Big Ears Founder and Artistic Director Ashley Capps. “Some powerful themes emerged during the planning process – there’s a deep spiritual thread running through much of the music, along with some brilliant work that is especially potent in our current political climate. There continues to be a strong female presence in the festival. Perhaps most importantly is a very dynamic interaction between the global – the internationally acclaimed artists – and the local – our own indigenous culture and sense of place and community. That’s especially exciting to me.”

Big Ears 2018 lineup:
Abigail Washburn & Wu Fei
Aine O’Dwyer performs William Eggleston’s “Musik”
Algiers
Anna & Elizabeth
Anna Thorvaldsdottir: “In The Light Of Air” performed by International Contemporary Ensemble
Anoushka Shankar: “Land of Gold”
Arto Lindsay
Bang on a Can All Stars celebrate their 30th anniversary with works by David Lang, Michael Gordon and Julia Wolfe
Bang on a Can All Stars perform Julia Wolfe’s “Anthracite Fields”
Bang on a Can All Stars “Field Recordings”
Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn
Béla Fleck & Brooklyn Rider
Bonnie “Prince” Billy
“Brimstone & Glory” live score performed by Nief-Norf and Wordless Music
Brooklyn Rider
Cleek Schrey & David Behrman
Craig Taborn Quartet
Cyro Baptista & The “Banquet of the Spirits”
Cyro Baptista presents “Vira Loucos”
Diamanda Galás
Duet for Theremin & Lap Steel
Evan Parker’s Electro-Acoustic Ensemble
Four Tet
GAS (Wolfgang Voigt)
Godspeed You! Black Emperor
Innov Gnawa
International Contemporary Ensemble
Jaga Jazzist
Jaga Jazzist featuring Ståle Storløkken & Jon Balke
Jason Moran Duo with Milford Graves
Jason Moran presents Fats Waller Dance Party
BANGS (Jason Moran, Mary Halvorson and Ron Miles)
Jenny Hval
Jenny Scheinman presents “Kannapolis: A Moving Portrait”
Jenny Scheinman’s “Mischief & Mayhem” with Nels Cline & Scott Amendola
Juana Molina
Julie Byrne
Kelly Lee Owens
Kid Koala’s “Satellite” Turntable Orchestra
Knoxville Symphony Strings performs “Were You There” with baritone Davone Tines
Laurel Halo (Live with Eli Keszler)
Lightning Bolt
Lucius
Medeski Martin & Wood
Milford Graves
Nels Cline: “Lovers” with the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra and guests
Peter Evans Ensemble
Rocket Science (Peter Evans, Sam Pluta, Craig Taborn, Evan Parker)
Roscoe Mitchell Trios
Rostam
Rova: “The Sound in Space Project”
Rova Channeling Coltrane: “Electric Ascension”
Sam Amidon
Steve Gunn
Stian Westerhus
Susanna
“Go Dig My Grave” featuring Giovanna Pessi, Frode Haltli, Cheyenne Mize and Susanna
SUUNS
Tal National
The Black Twig Pickers
The Ecstatic Music of Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitanda performed by The Sai Anantam Ashram Singers
The Jerry Douglas Band
The Thing
Tyshawn Sorey Trio

Visit BigEarsFestival.org.