Final Lineup Announced for 2017 Wide Open Main Stage at IBMA's World of Bluegrass


Promotional photo of Steve Martin with the Steep Canyon Rangers: Steve Martin stands in the middle, wearing a suit and tie and holding his banjo (strap over his left shoulder); members of the Steep Canyon Rangers stand just behind and to either side of Martin, 3 on each side. Graham Sharp (far left) holds his banjo; then is Charles Humphrey (with full beard and hat); then Woody Platt stands to Martin's right shoulder. On Martin's other side, Mike Guggino stands to Martin's left; then Nicky Sanders, holding his fiddle and bow; Michael Ashworth stands on the far right (also wearing a hat). Organizers of this year’s International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA)’s World of Bluegrass, brought to you by Chiesi USA and taking place September 26-30 in Raleigh, North Carolina, announced the final lineup of performers for PNC presents Wide Open Bluegrass. Wide Open Bluegrass is the weekend festival that takes place during the five-day World of Bluegrass event.

Today’s announcement of performers at Raleigh’s Red Hat Amphitheater on the ticketed Wide Open Main Stage September 29-30 includes Steep Canyon Rangers featuring Steve Martin; Jerry Douglas and Sam Bush tribute to The Country Gentlemen featuring Jon Randall, Mark Schatz and Charlie Cushman; The Kruger Brothers with Kontras Quartet; Chatham County Line; and Molly Tuttle.

Steve Martin’s musical career is an extension of the storytelling impulse that drove his work as a comedian, an actor, a screenwriter, a playwright, an essayist, and a novelist. The Long-Awaited Album, his newest collaboration with the Grammy-winning North Carolina-based band Steep Canyon Rangers, is full of stories that mix humor and melancholy, whimsy and realism, rich characters and concrete details. And lots of banjos.

Steve Martin and Steep Canyon Rangers’ performance at IBMA will be the only live collaboration this year in support of their brand new tunes and is exclusive to IBMA’s Wide Open Bluegrass. The Long-Awaited Album, available September 22 on Rounder Records, shows Martin & SCR continuing to nudge the boundaries of the genre, respectfully but irreverently, which has established them as some of the most popular—and, in fact, among the finest—bluegrass musicians working today. Steep Canyon Rangers and Steve Martin are thrilled to host their album release celebration on Saturday Sept 30 2017 at Wide Open Bluegrass - in the state where it all began for them! (Steve Martin & Steep Canyon Rangers photo credit: Anna Webber)

The Long-Awaited Album is available for pre-order now: order the CD; order the LP

Sam Bush (left) playing mandolin, and Jerry Douglas (right) playing dobro on stage together - each musician has a microphone on a stand in front of him; there's an extra mandolin on a stand to Bush's right. Audience member silhouettes are visible in the foreground.These performers join previously announced artists The Infamous Stringdusters present the Wide Open Jam; Bela Fleck & Abigail Washburn; Hot Rize; The Travelin’ McCourys; 2017 Grammy winner The O’Connor Band featuring Mark O’Connor; Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver; Balsam Range; Lonesome River Band (celebrating their 35th anniversary as a band); Sierra HullSister Sadie; Flatt Lonesome; and the 50th Anniversary of Japanese band Bluegrass 45, featuring the band’s original lineup.  Artists and schedules are subject to change.

Wide Open Bluegrass is the principal fundraiser for the Bluegrass Trust Fund, which provides direct financial assistance to bluegrass artists and other industry professionals in times of emergency need.

“It seems crazy we can announce the addition of these incredible performers to an already-stellar lineup on the Main Stage of IBMA’s Wide Open Bluegrass Festival, but we are! This Main Stage at the Red Hat Amphitheater will have performances that bluegrass fans cannot see anywhere else,” said Paul Schiminger, Executive Director of the International Bluegrass Music Association. “Furthermore, this is an important way for fans to help the bluegrass community.  Up to 50% of the net proceeds from ticket sales goes to the Bluegrass Trust Fund, a vital 501 (c)(3) organization that provides emergency financial assistance to bluegrass professionals when they need it most.  What can be better than enjoying a truly unique weekend of music while helping those who work so hard to make that music?”

The daily lineup for the Wide Open Main Stage is:

Friday, September 29

12:00 pm Molly Tuttle
1:15 pm  The Kruger Brothers with Kontras Quartet
3:00 pm  Flatt Lonesome
4:00 pm  Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver
5:00 pm  The O’Connor Band featuring Mark O’Connor
6:30 pm  Bela Fleck & Abigail Washburn
8:30 pm  Jerry Douglas and Sam Bush tribute to The Country Gentlemen featuring Jon Randall, Mark Schatz and Charlie Cushman
9:30 pm  The Infamous Stringdusters present the Wide Open Jam

Saturday, September 30

12:00 pm Sister Sadie
1:00 pm  Chatham County Line
2:00 pm  Bluegrass 45
3:00 pm  Sierra Hull
4:00 pm  Lonesome River Band
5:00 pm  Balsam Range
6:30 pm  The Travelin’ McCourys
8:00 pm  Hot Rize
9:45 pm  Steep Canyon Rangers featuring Steve Martin

Schedule is subject to change without notice.

“Each day at Red Hat Amphitheater, fans will be treated to exclusive live show experiences,” said William Lewis, executive director of PineCone, the Piedmont Council of Traditional Music, and producer of the festival. “The Steep Canyon Rangers and Steve Martin will unite one night only to perform brand new music. Jerry Douglas and Sam Bush are cooking up a very special show, just for IBMA, paying homage to the originators of progressive bluegrass – The Country Gentlemen. With other bands marking important anniversaries, showcasing new material, and inviting guests to sit in and jam, these unique live music experiences help create indelible memories for all involved, both in the audience and on stage.”

The schedule for the free Wide Open StreetFest performances will be announced later in the summer.

For the third year, Chiesi USA, Inc. - the Cary, North Carolina-based specialty pharmaceutical company - is the principal sponsor of the World of Bluegrass event.

Additionally, PNC Bank returns for the fifth year as the presenting sponsor for the two-day Wide Open Bluegrass festival.

Single day general admission for performances at Red Hat Amphitheater during Wide Open Bluegrass starts as low as $60 for the general public and $50 for IBMA members. Additional details and pricing information - including member discounts – for Red Hat Amphitheater performances, Bluegrass Ramble Showcase passes, IBMA Business Conference registration, IBMA Award Show tickets and hotel reservations are available at IBMA’s website,

More info about World of Bluegrass and the Wide Open Festival

IBMA’s World of Bluegrass, whose principal sponsor is Chiesi USA, is a five-day annual bluegrass music homecoming and convention. World of Bluegrass encompasses four events: the IBMA Business Conference, September 26-28; the Bluegrass Ramble, an innovative series of showcases, taking place September 26-28 in downtown Raleigh and at the Raleigh Convention Center; the 28th Annual International Bluegrass Music Awards, scheduled for Thursday evening, September 28; and PNC presents Wide Open Bluegrass, September 29-30, a two-day festival. The ticketed Wide Open Main Stage features the best of the best in bluegrass today, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Bluegrass Trust Fund. The free Wide Open StreetFest brings bluegrass into the community and introduces the music to thousands of new fans every year.

As in years past, events during World of Bluegrass will take place at the Raleigh Convention Center, the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, the Red Hat Amphitheater and at various venues in town.

The Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau reported that last year’s World of Bluegrass events generated $11.5 million in direct visitor spending for that region, with total attendance for the week’s activities estimated to be a record-breaking 217,225 people. Over 220 acts performed throughout the entire week of World of Bluegrass.

PNC Bank, National Association, is a member of The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE: PNC). PNC is one of the largest diversified financial services institutions in the United States, organized around its customers and communities for strong relationships and local delivery of retail and business banking including a full range of lending products; specialized services for corporations and government entities, including corporate banking, real estate finance and asset-based lending; wealth management and asset management. For information about PNC, visit

Chiesi USA, Inc. is a specialty pharmaceutical company committed to research, development, and commercialization of innovative products in the areas of cardiovascular, neonatology, respiratory, rare disease and special care therapeutics. Our primary focus is on people: the people we serve in the healthcare community; the people whose lives are touched by our products and services; and the people who work at Chiesi USA, as they strive to build their company, their family and their community. Chiesi USA, Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Chiesi Farmaceutici S.p.A.

IBMA – the International Bluegrass Music Association – is the professional trade organization for the global bluegrass music community. The organization’s six-year run in Raleigh is the product of their successful partnership with The Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau, The Raleigh Convention Center, PineCone—The Piedmont Council of Traditional Music, the City of Raleigh and a local organizing committee.