Nightfall Serves Up Bluegrass Music Friday

Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Celebrating its 35th season of free music at Miller Plaza, Nightfall continues Friday with traditional and contemporary bluegrass. This week’s headline performance by Wildfire reflects a change from the originally scheduled O’Connor Lee band, which had to cancel because of health issues. The New Dismembered Tennesseans remain as opening act at 7 p.m.

Review for Wildfire:

Formed in 2000 by members of J.D. Crowe’s band The New South, Wildfire quickly became one of the most talked about groups in the bluegrass music industry. With chart topping CDs and fan favorite songs such as "The Lord Knows I'm Drinking,”  "Bartender's Blues,” "I Wouldn't Mind The Shackles" and "Daddy Loved Trains.” Wildfire has become a mainstay on radio and the festival circuit. The band is led by founding members Robert Hale and Curt Chapman, surrounded by stellar musicians Johnny Lewis, Scott Napier, and Matt DeSpain.

The band has showcased its scorching instrumentals and soul-warming vocals on three past CDs, and are now excited to unveil their upbeat new single, “Ride the Train,” written by Teddy Gentry of the band Alabama. It’s the lead release from the forthcoming album “Quiet Country Town,” coming soon from Pinecastle Records. Their headline performance at Nightfall is from 8-9:30 p.m.

Opening the night at 7 p.m. is local bluegrass favorite, The New Dismembered Tennesseans.  The band, which started with McCallie school classmates including Fletcher Bright and Ed Cullis around 75 years ago, now continues the musical tradition with current members Eleanor Bright (Fletcher’s granddaughter), Laura Walker, Don Cassell, Bobby Burns, Tom Morley and original member Ed “Doc” Cullis. According to Laura Walker, “We got strict instructions from Fletcher before he passed that we were to keep playing. We’re really happy we chose to move forward with it. It’s not the same band, but it’s rooted in history, so we decided we wanted to maintain that.”

In addition to music on the Miller Plaza stage, other special features at Nightfall this Friday include a variety of local food trucks, local artisans and the Chattanooga Football Club’s inflatable soccer field in Miller Park.

Bulk discount tickets for beer, wine and cocktails are available this year at each show, offering a 20 percent savings on a packet of 20 tickets. Non-alcoholic drink concessions are also available on site. No outside food or beverages are allowed to be brought in to Nightfall since concession sales are a primary funder of Nightfall.

Known for its family-friendly environment as well as being recognized nationally for the quality of its musical programming, Nightfall is a highly acclaimed concert series that brings the Chattanooga community together in the heart of the city.

Nightfall is locally owned and produced by Chattanooga Presents. 

For more information on this free community concert series, call 304-5835 or visit NightfallChattanooga.com for a complete, interactive website that includes music samples by each headliner, as well as other important information for first-time attendees.


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Charise Castro Smith’s “Feathers and Teeth” will be presented Oct. 11-15 in the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Fine Arts Center’s Dorothy Hackett Ward Theatre, 752 Vine St. and the intersection ... (click for more)

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