« Back to list

Ozark Folk Festival Line-up Includes Legends and Rising Stars

Wednesday, September 6, 2006


September 6, 2006

Jill M. Rohrbach, travel writer
Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism

– Making its first appearance at the 57th annual Ozark Folk Festival this October in Eureka Springs will be Hannah Blaylock & Eden’s Edge, an award-winning band from Russellville that has emerged as a premier acoustic group on the Arkansas music scene.

Their sought-after sound features Blaylock's breathtaking vocals and merges modern bluegrass instrumentation with the country and folk-influenced songwriting of band member Steve Smith. Fans of Alison Krauss and Union Station will be easily drawn to this group’s style.

Hannah Blaylock & Eden’s Edge made its first public appearance at the 2003 Arkansas Acoustic Festival, where it was awarded a first place finish in the group competition. In March of 2006, the band won the Arkansas Times Musician's Showcase. The band has shared the stage with legendary groups such as Del McCoury, Judy Collins and Johnny Lee.

The band's second CD, "Lights of Home," was released in March of 2006, and has been well received by a fan base that stretches from California to the Carolinas. It features 13 original songs that range from upbeat bluegrass to heartwarming ballads and gospel numbers, all of which highlight the group's tight vocal harmonies and tasteful instrumentation.

"Songbird," a track from the new album, was selected by the Nashville Songwriter's Association as a finalist in the CMT/ NSAI Songwriting Competition. "Cover Me," the title track from their first CD, was also recognized by the NSAI Competition in 2004 with an Honorable Mention.

The group consists of lead vocalist Hannah Blaylock, who was born in Nimrod, Ark. and currently attends the University of Central Arkansas in Conway. Originally from Booneville and growing up amid a family of bluegrass musicians, Cherrill Green plays mandolin. Dean Berner is accomplished on the resonator guitar (Dobro) and guitar. Hailing from Lurton, a small town in Newton County, Ark., Steve Smith plays guitar. On bass is Mel Blaylock, who taught himself to play saxophone and guitar as a teenager. Lonnie Eason on harmonica has been playing for 30-plus years. Drummer Wes Saunders moved to Russellville when he was 11 and spent some time in Nashville before returning to his Arkansas River Valley roots.

While the Ozark Folk Festival will provide a venue for these rising stars, the music lineup is solid with performances from the well-known Smothers Brothers, legendary Arlo Guthrie, and the popular regional group Big Smith.

All shows are at The Auditorium. The Smothers Brothers will perform at 8:30 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 12. Guthrie will take the stage at 8:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 13. Big Smith is set to play at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 14. For reserved seating tickets to individual shows or for package deals, phone the festival box office at 1-888-855-7823 or order online at www.theaud.org. Hannah Blaylock & Eden’s Edge will perform at 2 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 15 and tickets are available at the door only. For advance tickets, phone PaperMoon Attractions at (479) 363-0363.

Submitted by the Arkansas Department of Parks & Tourism
One Capitol Mall, Little Rock, AR 72201, (501) 682-7606
E-mail: info@arkansas.com

May be used without permission. Credit line is appreciated:
"Arkansas Department of Parks & Tourism"