Beginning on May 31, Middle Tennessee’s only Americana-formatted public radio station, WMOT, will host 895 Fest to celebrate its 50th anniversary. 895 Fest (so named for the station’s 89.5 FM frequency) has a strong lineup of featured artists scheduled to perform during a two-day Americana-themed music festival hosted at Hop Springs Beer Park in Murfreesboro.
The festival will provide a taste of what WMOT Roots Radio is all about. 895 Fest kicks off on Friday, May 31, at 6 p.m. and runs that day until 11 p.m. The festival continues on Saturday, June 1, at 11 a.m., wrapping up at 11 p.m. that night.
Lee Roy Parnell. Photo by Amy Richmond.
“895 Fest will amplify our mission of building community, promoting music discovery and producing live music experiences with celebrated artists and music lovers,” according to WMOT Executive Director Val Hoeppner.
Expect to see Rodney Crowell, Lee Roy Parnell, Mandy Barnett, Sarah Potenza, Mike Farris, Robbie Fulks and additional artists who all coexist under the eclectic umbrella of roots music.
Longtime Middle Tennessee resident and “Godfather of Americana” Jason Ringenberg will take the stage in support of his recent solo album, Stand Tall. (As longtime area residents likely remember, Ringenberg fronted the groundbreaking Nashville country-punk band Jason & the Scorchers.)
Jason Ringenberg. Photo by Gregg Roth.
Many country music fans may know Barnett, who grew up in Crossville, Tennessee, for her portrayal of the legendary Patsy Cline in Always . . . Patsy Cline, beginning when Barnett was a teenager in the 1990s, and later reprising that role on occasion.
Fulks recently recorded and released the Wild! Wild! Wild! album, featuring a fun boogie vibe and full-throttle piano work, with Linda Gail Lewis (sister and collaborator of Jerry Lee Lewis).
It’s all taking place at Hop Springs Beer Park, partnering with WMOT to create a memorable experience for attendees. In addition to the beautiful outdoor space, the fest will feature the Hospitality Village, a small area lined with shops, food, crafts and opportunities to purchase goods from local businesses.
Tickets are currently on sale at 895fest.org. General admission tickets are available for $120, which will cover admission for both festival days. Festival admission is $65 for all current WMOT members. If you don’t make it in person, though, each festival performance will be broadcast over a variety of sources, including 89.5 FM, wmot.org and vuhaus.com.
Inaugural 895 Fest Schedule
Friday, May 31
5 p.m. – Robbie Fulks
6 p.m. – Molly Tuttle
7 p.m. – McCrary Sisters
8 p.m. – Delbert McClinton
9 p.m. – Lee Roy Parnell
10 p.m. – The War & Treaty
Saturday, June 1
11 a.m. – Pat Byrne
12 p.m. – Lillie Mae
1 p.m. – Mandy Barnett
2 p.m. – Rev Sekou
3 p.m. – Jason Ringenberg
4 p.m. – Sarah Potenza
5 p.m. – Peterson Bros
6 p.m. – Steve Poltz
7 p.m. – Rodney Crowell
8 p.m. – Mike Farris
9 p.m. – Liz Brasher
10 p.m. – Cordovas
WMOT, one of Tennessee’s first public radio stations, was born in 1969. These days, people still tune in and listen to what’s coming over the air. Throughout its decades of airtime, WMOT sought to encourage a thirst for musical discovery.
WMOT Roots Radio now carries that torch.
89.5 FM airs programs and songs that are enjoyed all across the Middle Tennessee area and aims to foster a more fruitful music landscape in Murfreesboro. The station, also an NPR affiliate, grows alongside MTSU’s College of Media and Entertainment.
For more information about 895 Fest, visit 895fest.org. Hop Springs is located at 6790 John Bragg Hwy.