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The Perfect Newport Folk Festival Line-up


With the line-up for the Newport Folk Fest kept always under wraps until closer to the spring, the anticipation for the wait can be slightly frustrating. In order to ease the passing of time, we thought it would be fun to create our own list of what we believe to be the perfect Folk Fest line-up. In typical tease fashion, the Folk Fest people have released the names of three artists who are part of the summer events: Andrew Bird, Shovels and Rope and The Lone Bellow. Although July 2628 is a distant dream away, here is who we think would be the perfect, idealistic line-up for summer 2013’s Newport Folk Festival:

  • Blitzen Trapper: A previous guest of the Folk Fest, Blitzen Trapper is a modern take on the committed, melody-driven storytelling that has defined what folk music truly is.
  • Mumford & Sons: We can’t imagine the crowd that this line-up announcement would beckon if it came true. However, one can’t deny the impact Mumford & Sons have had on popularizing folk-rock to mainstream audiences. While some might see this as a tragedy of the mainstream breaking into the once privately appreciated genre, shouldn’t we just all be thankful that people are listening to quality music?
  • Grizzly Bear: Unquestionably, yes.
  • Bon Iver: Please! And play “Holocene.”
  • Blind Pilot: Welcome back, you’ve passed the test.
  • First Aid Kit: Two women whose calming voices echo whispers of motherly woods. The Newport Folk Fest was made for this type of band.
  • Best Coast: Where West Coast meets East Coast, dear Best Coast, come show us a little love.
  • Beach House: Recently touring Europe, Beach House has been on the tour circuit for a while. With their newish album Bloom, what a better place for this duo than the Folk Fest stage?
  • Conor Oberst: Last year, Conor Oberst graced the stage, answering yes to the question that he is, in fact, one of best lyricists today. However, he was also spotted the day before his performance in the children’s tent orchestrating sing-a-longs with the kids. We need this man back.
  • The Decemberists: They’re always welcomed guests.
  • Deer Tick: Another modern example of folk-rock at its finest and raspiest.
  • Devendra Banhart: Where is this guy? What is he doing? Why isn’t he a given?
  • Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros: Please come back, we need you.
  • Fleet Foxes: Harmony in flesh.
  • Feist: Another female titan will do this festival good, while adding typical Feist warmth and glow.
  • Broken Bells/The Shins/James Mercer: We’ll take the lead singer James Mercer of The Shins anyway we can – all the above please.
  • Shakey Graves: An up and comer in the folk circuit, Shakey Graves is a prime example of the unique innovation of modern indie-folk.
  • Of Monsters and Men: As awesome live performers who get the audience on their feet, Folk Fest needs some booty shaking.
  • Tallest Man on Earth: Beautiful lyricist. Just a man and his guitar.
  • Alabama Shakes: Soul-shaker, wake us up.
  • Trampled by Turtles: One of those comfortable Folk Fest blankets that let us know the world is still spinning.
  • Tegan and Sara: New album! We beckon you forth!
  • Elvis Costello: You’ve come before, and blew our minds with your presence. Please let us bask in your warm glow again.
  • She and Him: M.Ward and Zooey Deschanel, teach us about love.
  • The Head and the Heart: Who are you kidding? Of course you’ll be there.
  • The Paper Kites: This we would love to see. The perfect gentle comfort.
  • Iron and Wine: Your last album surprised us all with its heavy jazz sound. Surprise us again.
  • Jackson Browne: Along the lines of the greats, Jackson Browne offers a more matured, knowledgeable take on the ways of folk.
  • Cat Power: Meow, yes.
  • The Temper Trap: Opening for Coldplay last December, Temper Trap has come a long way from their popularized single “Sweet Disposition”.
  • Stars: Another great story-teller duo.
  • Mother Mother: We love duets, what can we say? And this duo is the perfect combo for the festival stage.
  • The Middle East: Our little secret.
  • Local Natives: Hummingbird, Local Native’s newest album, offers up a more matured and innovative harmony.
  • Jack Johnson: Is there any way we can convince you to come out of your gentle shell in Hawaii and heal us softly with your guitar?
  • Grouplove: Talk about a distinct sound. Grouplove is a machine all their own, who might bring that intensity and excitement the Folk Fest needs.
  • Deerhunter: We already know you are planning two festivals in June and April, leaving a surprisingly empty slot for July…
  • Sufjan Stevens: Along the lines of folk kings and gentle voiced men, Sufjan is a mastermind in his own right.
  • Bob Dylan: Dear Bob, we wholeheartedly apologize for our behavior in ’65. As the god of folk, please honor us with your presence this summer 2013.

There you have it, the most ideal composition line-up for summer 2013. Now, if only the three-day pass wasn’t already sold out…

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