It's tough to imagine that any previously initiated Wannee Festival lovers felt anything but warmth this morning when they checked the lineup announcement on the fest's website. They'll probably feel the warmth again when they log on to buy their tickets, which will be released Friday.
Wannee Fest has always been for the Allman Brothers Band what the fortress of solitude is for Superman, except they invite all their friends in to hang out. This year's lineup is rich with Allman family music, including the Allmann Brothers Band themselves, who will play two nights, as well as founding member Jaimoe's Jasssz Band, Gov't Mule, Tedeschi Trucks Band, and Devon Allman's Honeytribe.
The Grateful Dead family is strongly represented on the bill as well. Furthur is the current incarnation of the Dead, lead by Phil Lesh and Bob Weir. Meanwhile Dead drummer Mickey Hart and keyboardist Bruce Hornsby will both be there with their respective bands, and Trigger Hippy includes Phil and Friends vets Jackie Greene and Joan Osborne.
Rounding out the lineup are some other interesting, old-school characters as well as some new-schoolers who can trip out the kids late into the night. Blues legend Buddy Guy and Ray Manzarek of the Doors highlight the former group, while Conspirator and Eoto will bring the electronic vibes of the new generation.
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The shady, wooded makeup of the Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park always evokes a feeling of enchantment. Elves and fairies are implied as folks frolic in the meadow, drum in the grove, and laugh around the fire late into the night. The music that comes from the stages is often uplifted in a unique way. Suwanne lovers know why, but it is tough to put into words. This year is set to be another celebration of this magic, for the returning elders and wide-eyed newbies alike.
Full Wannee Festival lineup:
Allman Brothers Band
Tedeschi Trucks Band
Jaimoe's Jasssz Band
Mickey Hart Band
Hot Tuna Electric
Ray Manzarek and Roy Rogers Band
North Mississippi Allstars
Ivan Neville's Dumpstaphunk
Devon Allman's Honeytribe
Bobby Lee Rodgers Trio
Big Sam's Funky Nation
Jacob Jeffries Band
The Yeti Trio
Wannee Festival 2012. With the Allman Brothers Band, Further, Gov't Mule, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Jaimoe's Jasssz Band, Buddy Guy, Bruce Hornsby, Mickey Hart Band, Hot Tuna Electric, Ray Manzarek and Roy Rogers Band, Leftover Salmon, North Mississippi Allstars, Trigger Hippy, Soja, Conspirator, Eoto, Ivan Neville's Dumpstaphunk, Particle, Devon Allman's Honeytribe, Zach Deputy, Matt Schofield, Bobby Lee Rodgers Trio, Big Sam's Funky Nation, Charles Bradley, Bonerama, Jacob Jeffries Band, the Yeti Trio, and Bonnie Blue, April 19 to 21 at Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park, 3076 95 Drive, Live Oak. Tickets cost $189.50 to $425. Click here.