Musicians

Becky Buller

The Becky Buller Band

Becky Buller, which Fiddler Magazine described as "one of the most sought after performers in the bluegrass music industry today," will bring her band to the 20th annual Bear Festival MainStage. Becky grew up in a very musical southern Minnesota family and played with them in a group called Prairie Grass.

Chris Jones

Chris Jones & The Night Drivers

Founder and front man of The Night Drivers, Chris Jones, who appeared at Bear three times during our early years, is a quadruple threat as a singer, a songwriter, a guitarist—and, thanks to his role hosting SiriusXM’s Bluegrass Junction, as the most widely heard broadcasting voice in bluegrass. Members of The Night Drivers band have been recipients of eight IBMA awards.

John Lilly

John Lilly

John Lilly is an award-winning songwriter and performer from Charleston, W. Va., who specializes in country roots and traditional folk music. From poignant ballads to humorous songs and yodels, John captures the essence of the past and puts it in his own terms. He has been a Bear festival favorite for many years. 

The Georgia Crackers

The Georgia Crackers

The Georgia Crackers, a favorite of Dahlonega audiences, keep alive the string band tradition made famous by 1920s artists such as the Skillet Lickers and Fiddling John Carson. In addition to authentic breakdowns, rags, and blues, the Crackers always entertain with old-time ballads, vocal harmonies, and humorous novelty songs.

BlueBilly Grit

BlueBilly Grit

From the side porch of an old gristmill to the main stage of The Telluride Bluegrass Festival, following their win at the 2012 Telluride Bluegrass Band Competition, BlueBilly Grit has quickly become a force in bluegrass and Americana.

Jason Kenney and Seth Livengood

Formerly of HomeGrown Revival and The Kenney-Blackmon String Band, Jason is a multi-instrumentalist (guitar, mandolin, banjo) and songwriter.

The Threadbare Skivvies

Threadbare Skivvies

The Threadbare Skivvies are a duo from Atlanta. They like to describe themselves, and their music, as vagabond nature folk. It’s a bohemian banjo bangin', stompin’ & clappin’ kind of business - powerhouse harmonies, funky rhythms, and soulfully crafted lyrics.
 

Georgia Pick & Bow All Stars

Georgia Pick & Bow All Stars

Appearing on the Bear on the Square Mountain Festival’s MainStage for the eighth consecutive year are students from the Georgia Pick & Bow Traditional Music School Program, an after school program in Dahlonega. Georgia Pick & Bow is a bluegrass and old-time mountain music school for young people grades 4 through 12.

Crooked Mile

Crooked Mile

Crooked Mile is a North Georgia-based traditional bluegrass band. Formed from members who have been playing together off and on for at least 20 years, the band approaches this music with a combination of respect and a willingness to have a great time sharing it with the audience.

Locust Honey

Locust Honey

As Locust Honey, Chloe Edmonstone and Meredith Watson bring their experience in Old-Time, Bluegrass, and Pre-War Blues to both their original material and the traditional songs and tunes of the American Southeast.

Ugly Cousin

Ugly Cousin

For the second consecutive year, the band for our Friday night Live and Silent Country Auction is Ugly Cousin. The group is composed of members who are all natives of Dahlonega - ‘Nuggets’ as locals often coin themselves - who all grew up around a variety of music. However, there is a clear and "golden" thread of traditional music woven throughout their repertoire.

Gospel Jam

The Sunday Morning Gospel Jam

Sunday Morning Gospel Jam

The single most popular event each year at the Bear Festival is the Sunday Morning Gospel Jam led by Glenda Pender. Come early if you want a seat, as the MainState Tent is usually packed for this event.

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