Carolina Music Festivals is a comprehensive calendar and guide to multi-act, daylong or multiple-day music festivals in North Carolina.

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October 2017 - North Carolina Music Festivals

Dates and other details may be estimated based on last year's festival until confirmed by festival organizers.

September 29 - October 1    Asheville Barnaroo - Leicester

The festival showcases local and regional singer songwriters and bands in the rock 'n' roll, hard rock and funk genres on two stages, one of which is in a barn. Shows are Saturday followed by "wake-up activities" Sunday. There will also be art and food vendors onsite. A portion of proceeds go to the Asheville Music School.

Friday: Southern Culture on the Skids, Holy Ghost Tent Revival, Parker Gispert, Shake It Like a Caveman, Pierce Edens.
Saturday: Laura Blackley and the Wildflowers, Asheville Music School of Rock, Resonant Rogues, Andrew Scotchie and the River Rats, The Get Right Band, Midnight Snack.

Festival site: Franny's Farm

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10:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.; gates open 9 a.m.

Three-day pass: $50 and $75 with camping; $55 without camping.
VIP weekend pass: $100, includes camping.
Friday: $20.
Saturday: $35.
Younger than 13 free.

October 4 - 7    Bluegrass Island Festival - Manteo

The festival debuted in 2012 and has established itself as a major fall event on the Outer Banks featuring top bluegrass acts, a band competition, vendors, fireworks and more. Click on the photo for more information.

Wednesday: Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver, Joe Mullins and the Radio Ramblers, Darrell Webb Band, Alan Bibey and Grasstowne, Stoney Creek, Commonwealth Bluegrass.
Thursday: The Gibson Brothers, Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper, Darin and Brooke Aldridge, Steve Dilling and Sideline, Irene Kelley, Charlie Oakley and Blazin' Grass.
Friday: Rhonda Vincent and the Rage, Flatt Lonesome, Love Canon, Nothin' Fancy, Code Blue, Heidi and Ryan.
Saturday: Billy Strings and Co., The Boxcars, The Isaacs, The Sowell Family, Jimmy Fortune, The Grascals, Junior Sisk and Ramblers Choice.

Festival site: Roanoke Island Festival Park

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Gates open 10 a.m.

Ticket prices typically rise periodically, sometimes without prior notice.
Four-day pass: $145 through May 12, later prices TBA.
Daily: $45.
VIP 4-Day Pass (chair in front of stage, reserved parking on the island, barbecue shindig, 20 percent discount on merchandise): $275.
VIP 4-Day Onstage Seating (preferred parking, complimentary water and sodas, artist meet-and-greets, barbecue shindig, 20 percent discount on merchandise): $400.

All non-VIP parking is at the Fort Raleigh National Historic Site, where a $5 shuttle (all-day pass) is available.

October 5 - 8    Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival - Silk Hope

The semiannual Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival of Music & Dance (see May schedule) presents an eclectic mix of music - from rock to jazz and Americana, Cajun and klezmer - on four stages. There are also musicians' competitions, art and craft vendors, food vendors, games, a drum circle, children's activities and more. Donna the Buffalo is the host band. Click on the photo for more information.

Beats Antique, Donna the Buffalo, Elephant Revival, Locos Por Juana, Seratones, LADAMA, Diali Cissokho and Kaira Ba, Sarah Shook and The Disarmers, Phil Cook and the Guitarheels, The Amateurs, Amanda Anne Platt and The Honeycutters, Bulltown Strutters, Cane Mill Road, Cool John Ferguson, Cuzco, Dangermuffin, Dark Water Rising, Dr. Bacon, Emily Musolino, Fireside Collective, The Glorifying Vines Sisters, Harvey Dalton Arnold; I,Star; James "Bubba" Norwood, John Howie Jr. and The Rosewood Bluff, The Lee Boys, Lobo Marino, Mamis and the Papis, Music Maker Revue, The Oblations, Onyx Club Boys, The Outboards, Pat "Mother Blues" Cohen, The Pinkerton Raid, Preston Frank, Rebekah Todd and The Odyssey, Son Viajero, The Tan and Sober Gentlemen, Travers Brothership, Urban Soil, Voodoo Circuit, WarPaint Singers, Will Ridenour and Gabriel Pelli – Ecstatic Dance Party, Zach Deputy, Hoppin' John Presents: Old-Time Square Dance, Vinyl Lounge, The Green Grass Cloggers, Paperhand Puppet Intervention Cabaret.

Festival site: Shakori Hills

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Music starts 5 p.m. Thursday, 1 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. Saturday, 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

Four-day pass: $104 early bird (to August 14), $114 advance (to October 3), $124 at gate; ages 13-15 $54, $59, $64.
Thursday $27 in advance, $32 at gate; Friday $37 in advance, $42 at gate, Saturday $37 in advance, $42 at gate; Sunday $27 in advance, $32 at gate.
Ages 13-15 (at gate only): Thursday $16, Friday $21, Saturday $21, Sunday $16.
Younger than 13 free.
Check website for various discounts.

Camping: Tents $15 in advance, $20 at gate; vehicle camping (car, camper, RV, van, etc.) $86 in advance, $94 at gate. RV more that 25 feet long or a vehicle and trailer pays double.
Early camping begins prior Saturday at $10 for tents, $10 per day for vehicles.

October 5 - 7    Mustang Music Festival - Corolla

The Mustang Music Festival has gone on hiatus for 2017 after having to cancel in 2016 because of Hurricane Matthew. The 2017 Mustang Spring Jam was to be held in May, and organizers said their "hope is to come back in the fall of 2018."

The benefit for the Corolla Wild Horse Fund, a nonprofit organization working to protect and preserve the last remaining herd of Spanish Mustangs on the northern Outer Banks, presents a slate of shows on two stages at a main outdoor site and late night sets at a various other venues. There's also a Thursday kickoff party. Regional breweries and area restaurants will have contingents at the main festival site alongside arts and craft vendors. See also the Mustang Spring Jam in May.

TBA. 2016 lineup included Lettuce, Yonder Mountain String Band, moe., G. Love and Special Sauce and 16 more. (The 2016 edition of the Mustang Music Festival was cancelled because of bad weather.)

Festival site: The Whalehead

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5 to 10 p.m. Thursday, 5 to 10 p.m. Friday, 12:15 to 10 p.m. Saturday, and to 2 a.m. at clubs.

Two-day pass: $55 until August 9 or sell out, $69 through October 6 or sell out, $85 at gate.
Daily: $40 in advance, $50 at gate.
VIP pass (catered dinner and five beverages each day, VIP tent access with private bar and snacks, flush-toilet restrooms with AC, "'Front Row' viewing area" (sic) at both stages, priority access to late night show, VIP parking): $179.
Younger than 13 free.

October 6 - 7    Ol' Front Porch Music Festival - Oriental

The picturesque coastal village of Oriental opens the front porches of several homes and businesses for about 30 performers who play a variety of music throughout Saturday afternoon. Artisans and crafters display their wares at the Country Marketplace, and various restaurants and businesses support the festival with special sales and other activities. The festival also presents a classic car show and a chicken barbecue dinner. The festival is in its fourth year in 2017 and is free.

Friday: Dom Flemons, Mojo Collins, Melissa Plett, UHOO's, Jill and Shane.
Saturday: Red Clay Ramblers, Mahalojazz, The Gospel Ensemble, Salty Paws, Moore's Creek Bluegrass, Honey Magpie, Coastal Notes Woodwind Quintet, Salt Water Gold, Dennis Cash, Flat Mountain Dulcimers, Brant Island Strings, Brittany Jean, Harbor Sounds, Bob Jones, Pamlico Flutes, Mitch Hayes Trio, Downeast Dulcimers, Brown Mountain Lightning Bugs, Frederick Ingram, Green Creek Bluegrass, more TBA.

Festival site: Broad and Hodges streets (map), The Old Theater at 609 Broad Street

6:30 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.

Porch performances (including Red Clay Ramblers) are free. Dom Flemons show at The Old Theater admission $20.

October 6 - 7    Marcus King Band Family Reunion - Black Mountain

The rising guitarist Marcus King and his band host a two-day music festival featuring a lineup curated by King himself. A portion of the proceeds go to Cannabis Forward, a Greenville, S.C.-based organization that raises awareness of the medical benefits of marijuana, and Mental Health America of Greenville County, a mental health advocacy, awareness and service organization. The 2017 festival is its debut.

Marcus King Band, Blackberry Smoke, David Shaw (of The Revivalists), Muddy Magnolias, Jaimoe's Jasssz Band, George Porter Jr., Big Something, Brandon "Taz" Niederhauer, Travers Brothership, Ron Holloway Band, Leah Blevins, Gabriel Kelley, That's What's Up.

Festival site: Pisgah Brewing Co.

4:30 p.m. Friday, TBA Saturday.

Two-day pass: Early bird $49.50 sold out; $67.50.
VIP pass (guided brewery tour and tasting, early entry, preferred parking, private viewing area, private bar, private port-a-lets and commemorative poster): $149.50.

See our profile of another festival held at Pisgah Brewing Co.

October 6 - 7    Bascom Lamar Lunsford Festival - Mars Hill

Regional musicians and dancers remember Bascom Lamar Lunsford, a musician and folklorist who dedicated his life to collecting and promoting the music of the Southern Appalachians. The festival presents showcase (i.e., very short) performances outdoors during the day and in an auditorium at night. The day includes the Fiddlin' 5K Road Race and Fun Run. The Bascom Lamar Lunsford Festival is in its 50th year in 2017.

Friday: Jeff Atkins, The Buckner Family, Lillian Chase, Cole Mountain, Roger Howell, Midnight Plowboys, Rhiannon and the Relics, Betty Smith, Gary Spence, Whitewater Bluegrass Co., Bailey Mountain Cloggers.
Saturday: Bailee Brandon and Jerry Sutton, Carolina Chickpeas, Larry G. Davis, Roger Howell, Lonesome Mountain Ears, Madison County JAM (Junior Appalachian Musicians) Program, Joe Penland, Southern Heritage, Bailey Mountain Cloggers, Blue Ridge Heritage Dancers.

Festival sites: Mars Hill University

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Daytime stage 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; ballad and story swap 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.; evening show starts 7 p.m.

Daytime shows are free; evening show $10, $5 younger than 12, free with Mars Hill University ID.

October 13 - 15    Three Days of Light Gathering - Ferguson

The 3DL festival bills itself as part retreat, part festival, part summer camp, part earth school. In addition to music in the evenings, the weekend offers three dozen workshops on such topics as sustainable living, natural health and wellness, personal / spiritual development and community and culture, plus keynote speakers, yoga and movement classes, flow / fire performances, fire dance, drum circles, and more. It is in its sixth year in 2017 and has moved from and August date in 2016.

Desert Dwellers, Yaima, In Plain Sight, HuDost, Dixon's Violin, Stratosphere, Drumspyder, J Brave, Medisin, Midnight Willo, Secret Sounds Alignment, Swazerazi, Noah Proudfoot, Jenna Gilmore, StarBaby and the Rolling Oms, Xyon, Waylon Longstride, Mycorr, Saproling.

Festival site: High Country Motorcycle Camp

2:30 p.m. Friday, 1:30 p.m. Saturday, 1 p.m. Sunday.

See the website for multiple ticket / camping packages.

October 14 - 15    Pleasure Island Seafood, Blues & Jazz Festival - Kure Beach

The oceanside festival presents national, regional and local blues and jazz performers on two stages, plus craft vendors; food vendors offering seafood and other cuisine; wine, beer and liquor; and a children's area with magicians, jugglers, clowns and more. The festival is in its 24th year in 2017 and is sponsored by the Pleasure Island Chamber of Commerce, which serves Carolina Beach and Kure Beach. Click on the photo for more information.

Saturday: Mud Morganfield Blues Band, Nick Moss Band, Randall Bramblett Band, Gate City Divas, Justin Cody Fox.
  Jazz Stage: "Funky" Leroy Harper, Will McBride Group, Little Zippers.
Sunday: Roomful of Blues, Carolyn Wonderland, David Russell and the Port City Blues.
  Jazz Stage: Freeport Jazz, Jame Michele Jazz Connecion, Hot Club of Wilmington.

Festival site: Fort Fisher Air Force Recreational Area

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Begins 11:30 a.m.

$50 in advance, $60 at gate.
Younger than 13 free.

Tickets are limited and tend to sell out.

October 19 - 21    Deweyfest - Burlington

Deweyfest is fiddler Dewey Brown's family-style bluegrass celebration. The festival moved from spring to fall in 2016 for two-days of shows, and expands to three days for 2017. The festival also presents picking and vocal harmony workshops, vendors, a fishing pond and a free "Beans & Cornbread Supper" on Thursday. Some bands play two sets each day.

Tommy Brown and the County Line Grass, Nathan Stanley, Kevin Prater Band, Carolina Blue, The Hinson Girls, Eliza Meyer and Dewey Brown, Mark Templeton and Pocket Change, Country Gentlemen Tribute, Marteka and William Lake, Buttermilk Creek, Wood Family Tradition, Jonah Riddle and Carolina Express, Three Jack Jenny

Festival site: Maplewood Hills Events Center

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Show starts: 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday, 1 to 8 p.m. Friday; noon to 8 p.m. Saturday.

Three-day pass: $50.
Thursday and Friday (each): $20.
Saturday: $25.

Free camping with tickets; showers available on site.

No alcohol allowed in the concert area.

October 19 - 22    The LEAF - Black Mountain

The semiannual LEAF - Lake Eden Arts Festival - embraces world music, new ageism and the outdoors (see May schedule). The weekend includes a lot of activities, especially for kids, and it's held at a mountain camp well-appointed for weekend festivals. Click on the photo for more information.

Toots and the Maytals, Los Lobos, Elephant Revival, Turkuaz, Fantastic Negrito, Raul Midon, Chicano Batman, Nik West, Sierra Hull, Feufollet, Con Brio, Villalobos Brothers, Khruangbin, Dustin Thomas, The Jerry Cans, Trad.Attack, The Broadcast, David LaMotte, The Screaming J's, Beny Esguerra and the New Tradition, Forlorn Strangers, Josh Phillip's Big Band, Andrew Finn Magill, Numatik, Porangui, Brie Capone, Sparrow and Her Wingman, Natadas, Ian Ridenhour, Chief Shaka Zulu, Vernon Budda Budda, The Golden Trumpets, The Campfire Reverends.
Contra dance bands: Great Bear, Buddy System w/ Oshima Brothers, DJ Jor-D, Mary Wesley, Dugan Murphy, Jesse Edgerton.

Festival site: Camp Rockmont

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Ticket prices in several combinations increase periodically or as limited numbers available at each tier are sold out. These are final-tier prices for ages 10-17 and adults:
Weekend pass (with tent camping, three days, two nights): $150-$180.
Weekend Plus (with tent camping, three and a half days, three nights, i.e., Thursday): $190-$215.
Community Pass (weekend for local residents): $105-$120.
Friday or Sunday: $45-$55.
Saturday: $60-$65.
Age 9 and younger free; younger than 18 must be with a parent. Packages for spring and fall festivals also available.

Car camping: $90 per 20x20 spot (one vehicle per spot).
RV Parking: $175 per spot (for larger vehicles that do not fit within the 20x20 vehicle camping spots)
Cabins: Sleeps 9 $470; sleeps 10 $490; sleeps 12 $516; sleeps 11 and has bathroom $616; lodge room for five $470; lodge bunk $188; shared 16-bunk room with half bath $1,355. Prices for Thursday through Saturday.
More options at website.

Parking: $8 advance, $10 at festival.

October 21    Groove in the Garden - Raleigh

The day at Raleigh Little Theatre's rose garden includes shows by mostly local bands playing indie pop, Southern rock, R&B and bluegrass, with an acoustic side stage added for 2016. There are also be food trucks, craft beer from North Carolina, vendors and a kids' zone. The festival, which is put on by The Pour House music hall, has moved from August to October for 2017, its third year. Click on the photo for more information.

American Aquarium, Toubab Krewe, Bombadil, Lonnie Walker, Rebekah Todd and The Odyssey, Dark Water Rising; Hank, Pattie and The Current; Ghostt Bllonde.

Festival site: Stephenson Amphitheater at Raleigh Little Theatre

1 to 9 p.m.; gate opens at noon.

$20 limited advance, $25 advance and at gate; younger than 6 free.
VIP (festival t-shirt, screenprinted poster, VIP tent access with complimentary food and drinks, side stage viewing privileges): $75.
(Packages also available with advanced ticket plus t-shirt or poster or shirt and poster.)

October 21    Rowan Blues and Jazz Festival - Salisbury

The family-friendly and free festival is dedicated to preserving, promoting and presenting blues and jazz with emphasis on musicians from North Carolina's Piedmont and of all ages. The long-running festival has struggled to stay afloat, changing formats and times of years. For 2017 it moves back to a single fall date.

Mac Arnold and Plate Full O' Blues, Nathan Pope Band, Blazin' Blues Bob, Live House, Patty Ray Virginia Blues Band, Joe Robinson and Friends, Diana Tuffin and Butch Stewart, Rowan Big Band Stars, more.

Festival site: Downtown Salisbury

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2 to 11 p.m.; gates open at 1 p.m.

General admission is free; limited VIP seating available through the website for $10.

October 26 - November 4    Clayton Piano Festival - Clayton

The festival dedicated to concert piano will present four shows: American Portraits, a cross-section of the greatest American music that speaks most closely to the history and culture generated by the Southern states (Oct. 26); a Halloween masked ball with dinner, concert and dessert reception (Oct. 28); Fiesta: Music without Borders, which guides audiences through some of Mexico's most beloved and important music (Nov. 2); and From Russia with Love, works from Russian romanticism (Nov. 4). Pianists involved in the festival also make presentations in local schools and to local piano students while in town. The festival is in its sixth year in 2017.

Elana Gleason (soprano), Michael Danchi (violin), Tyrone Chambers (tenor), Jonathan Levin (piano); César Reyes; Nikita Galaktionov, David Dubal (emcee for From Russia with Love).

Festival sites: Preston Woodall House (Benson), Brick and Mortar Events (Clayton; map), The Piazza at Portofino (Clayton), Cary Arts Center (Cary)

6:30 p.m. October 26, 6:30 p.m. October 28; 7 p.m. November 2; 7:30 p.m. November 4

Individual shows' prices vary.

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