Live Review: DelFest 2022 @ Allegany County Fairgrounds — 5/27-5/30/22


Bluegrass legend Del McCoury performs with his band during DelFest 2022 held over Memorial Day weekend at the Allegany County Fairgrounds in Cumberland, Maryland. (Photo by Casey Vock)

How much vibrancy can one artist bring to their music? And how big of a community can one individual cultivate around that music?

If DelFest 2022 was any indication, bluegrass legend Del McCoury — at the ripe age of 83 years old — has done as much if not more for his craft than any of the fine musicians who came before him and made this particular breed of roots music their life’s work.

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Live Review: Robert Earl Keen’s “The Road to Christmas” w/ Waylon Payne @ Lincoln Theatre — 12/6/21

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Robert Earl Keen (Photo by EMG/Shutterstock)

Legendary Texas singer-songwriter Robert Ear Keen’s annual Christmas tour is highlight of the holiday season. Built around his fan-favorite “Merry Christmas From the Fam-O-Lee,” every year REK and his band design a show around a theme.

Past themes have included “Country Gold” and the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. This year, the theme was “The Road to Christmas.” Each year’s show presents a collection of REK originals and cover songs fitted to theme, and his recent performance at the historic Lincoln Theatre in DC was no different. Costumes were a part of the deal, too; this year, all involved wore white jumpsuits, meant to suggest mechanics. It was truly a collective performance, as REK let his band members sing cover songs of their choice.

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Snapshots: Robert Earl Keen @ The Birchmere — 1/28/21

REK Robert Earl Keen performs at The Birchmere in Alexandria, Va., Jan. 28, 2021. (Photo by Ari Strauss)

Texas troubadour Robert Earl Keen recently put on two performances at legendary Alexandria, Virginia, music venue, The Birchmere, on Jan. 27 and 28. Traveling with a scaled down version of his usual road band, Robert performed as an acoustic trio which included himself on lead vocals and guitar, Kym Warner on mandolin and backing vocals, and Tom Van Schaik on drums and percussion.

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Live Review: Robert Earl Keen @ Lincoln Theatre — 12/6/19

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Robert Earl Keen performs at the Lincoln Theatre on Dec. 6, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)

“If you want Christmas music,” Robert Earl Keen told the Lincoln Theater recently, “go to the mall.” REK’s Countdown to Christmas Tour steered clear of holiday music until the encore, when he played the fan-favorite “Merry Christmas from the Family,” an ode to the dysfunction and craziness of the holidays.

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