When Labor Day Weekend rolls around, people usually think of going to the beach, having a backyard barbecue or just enjoying the day off by taking it easy. In Rhode Island, folks do things a bit …
When Labor Day Weekend rolls around, people usually think of going to the beach, having a backyard barbecue or just enjoying the day off by taking it easy. In Rhode Island, folks do things a bit differently around this time of year. They usually head down to South County to check out a bunch of live music while dancing and having a blast. This is what happens at the Rhythm & Roots Festival at Ninigret Park in Charlestown, which will be ringing in its 25th anniversary from September 1-3. There’s a stacked lineup that’ll be bringing a variety of tunes and here are five acts who are part of it that shouldn’t be ignored.
September 1 @ Rhythm Stage
The son of New Orleans music icon Aaron Neville, Ivan Neville is practically royalty in “The Big Easy” and he has a stellar resume that justifies his status. He’s collaborated with the likes of Bonnie Raitt, Don Henley, Paula Abdul and Keith Richards among others, but Dumpstaphunk has been his main outlet since the early 2000s. Joined by both Tony Hall and Nick Daniels III on bass, his cousin Ian on guitar, Deven Trusclair on drums, Alex Wasily on trombone and Ashlin Parker on trumpet, Neville puts on a party whenever he gets on stage and this is exactly what people should expect from his band’s upcoming performance.
September 2 @ Rhythm Stage & Roots Stage
3:15 & 8:30pm
Hailing from the Western New York village of Trumansburg, Donna The Buffalo have become a staple of Rhythm & Roots over the past few years. The quintet of vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Tara Nevins, electric guitarist, backing vocalist and pedal steel player Jeb Puryear, keyboardist and organist David McCracken, bassist Ted Pecchio and drummer Chris English have had a steady presence at the festival along with being a fan favorite. While they’re going to be playing twice during the second day of the event, they’re also going to be performing a third time on the Roots Stage at 8:30pm as part of the finale of this year’s Rhythm & Roots on Sunday.
September 2 @ Rhythm Stage
There are few musicians who exhibit an exuberant amount of energy while on stage like Trombone Shorty. Another New Orleans based artist, when Shorty and his band perform in front of a crowd, it’s more than just a show. It’s a full blown experience that’s often an unforgettable time that’ll get all sorts of people movin’ and groovin’ while absolutely enjoying themselves.
September 3 @ Rhythm Stage
When it comes to blues in the modern era, Robert Cray is one of the leading figures of the artform. The five time Grammy-winning artist has been bringing incredible riffs and solos from his guitar since the mid-70s and he also was the bassist for Otis Day and the Knights during the infamous scene that’s part of the cult classic comedy flick Animal House. When Cray performs it’s usually something special so make sure to be present when he and his band plug in, turn the amps up and let the music flow.
September 3 @ Rhythm Stage
Closing out the festival will be one of the top bluegrass bands on the planet in Greensky Bluegrass. They’re one of those acts who are fantastically conducive to an outdoor environment and anyone who likes the sound from a bunch of string instruments is bound to enjoy these guys. Expect a wide array of tunes from their prolific catalog as well as a vibe that’s as contagious as it is wonderful.