Big Ears Lineup Revealed – and Ticket Giveaway!


It’s pretty amazing that a festival which will happen over five months (March 23 – 26) from now is greeted with so much excitement. But then, Big Ears is a pretty extraordinary festival presenting music from all over the world and all over the genre map, from the most experimental to the most traditional. The thread that connects it all is virtuosity and the willingness to take risks. And the world comes to Knoxville; artists, guests and press. It’s the only time of year we know Rolling Stone and the New Yorker will be in our mid-sized city.

This year’s festival will expand to four days, which both makes sense given its sprawling nature and simultaneously makes me want to cry. The three days nearly killed me last year, so four should officially get it done. Interactive experiences, film, concerts and random pairings of artists will make every day an interesting experience, no doubt.

The artists are listed below, and is typically the case for me, I know only a handful of the names. That’s a large part of the appeal. I will hear artists I’ve never heard before. For that matter, I’ll hear sounds I’ve never heard before. It’s a mind-bending experience that forces me to re-evaluate my preconceptions and sometimes even my musical tastes. I always find something I want to explore further – and I do.

So, you can see the list. I can’t really expound on so many of the artists. The most mainstream happens to be one of my favorites: Jeff Tweedy and Wilco. I’ve seen them before – and both times surrounded by other great artists. The first time was on the World’s Fair Park with Sheryl Crow for Hot Summer Nights and the other show included Bob Weir, My Morning Jacket and Bob Dylan. Here they will be surrounded by luminaries in other genres.

Since I can offer much in the way of discussing the various artists, I selected the videos you see included here to help you start your exploration. Don’t spend too much time exploring before you head over to the site to pick up your tickets. They will go quickly. Below you’ll find the entire list. Have fun – it’s just a winter away!

And here’s your big news: YOU CAN WIN TWO TICKETS! To enter to win the two tickets, click the link to the right (or go directly) to the Inside of Knoxville FB Page and 1) “Like” it if you haven’t already and 2) Share the post about the giveaway to your FB page. I’ll pick a winner soon!





2017 Lineup:


Alvin Curran

American Contemporary Music Ensemble

Blonde Redhead featuring American Contemporary Music Ensemble

Carla Bley Trio with Steve Swallow and Andy Sheppard

Carla Bley with the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra

Claire Chase

Colin Stetson presents Sorrow: A Reimagining of Gorecki’s 3rd Symphony


Dakha Brahka

Dave Harrington Group



DJ Rupture

Emilia Amper

Frederic Rzewski

Frode Haltli: The Border Woods

Gavin Bryars Ensemble

Glenn Kotche

Henry Grimes

Henry Threadgill’s Zooid

Horse Lords


Jace Clayton presents Julius Eastman Memorial Dinner

Julius Eastman Memory Depot

Joan Shelley

Jóhann Jóhannsson’s Drone Mass featuring American Contemporary Music Ensemble

Julian Lage & Chris Eldridge | Aoife O’Donovan

Junun featuring Shye Ben Tzur and The Rajasthan Express

Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith

Knoxville Jazz Orchestra

Lætitia Sadier

Lisa Moore

Matmos perform Robert Ashley’s Perfect Lives (Private Parts)

Maya Beiser

Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble: The Soul’s Messenger

Michael Hurley

Musica Elettronica Viva (Alvin Curran, Richard Teitelbaum, & Frederic Rzewski)

My Brightest Diamond


Nils Økland Band

Oliver Coates

On Fillmore

Philip Jeck

Rachel Grimes “The Way Forth” Featuring Joan Shelley and Nathan Salsburg


Richard Teitelbaum

Sarah Kirkland Snider Unremembered: – DM Stith, Shara Worden, Padma Newsome

Steve Lehman & Sélébéyone

Shane Parish

Sir Richard Bishop

Six Organs of Admittance

Ståle Storløkken

Ståle Storløkken & Arve Henriksen


The Crossing

The Magenetic Fields: Fifty Song Memoir

Theatre of Voices

Theo Bleckmann



Wu Fei

Xiu Xiu

Yasmine Hamdan

Yuki Numata Resnick

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