Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Celebrating 20 Years of Blues; the Free Festival Will Feature Michael Burks, John Miller Blues

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Celebrating 20 Years of Blues; the Free Festival Will Feature Michael Burks, John Miller Blues

Article excerpt

Byline: TAMARA McCLARAN

Thousands of music lovers are getting ready to celebrate America's indigenous music form at this weekend's George's Music Springing the Blues Festival in Jacksonville Beach.

The free outdoor blues music festival will take place Friday through Sunday at the Seawalk Pavilion. This year marks the event's 20th anniversary.

The schedule features renowned and emerging artists performing on two stages. The festival will open at 5 p.m. Friday with the John Miller Blues band on the main stage and Mile Train on the west stage. Chubby Carrier and the Bayou Swamp Band will play at 9 p.m. Friday as main stage headliner.

Music performances will begin on the main stage at 11:45 a.m. Saturday with Tori Sparks and at noon on Sunday with the band Willie Mae. Michael Burks will play at 8:45 p.m. Saturday as the main stage headliner, and Magic Slim & the Teardrops will close the festival with a main stage performance at 6:15 p.m. Sunday.

In addition to the music, the festival will include nearby "Outerfest" activities, including the seventh annual Surfing the Blues Spring Surf Fest at 9 a.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Jacksonville Beach pier, and the Performance Running the Blues 5K Run and 2.5K Walk at 10:30 a.m. Saturday on the beach at the American Red Cross Volunteer Lifesaving Corps station.

In honor of the event's 20th anniversary, the Beaches Museum & History Center will feature a Springing the Blues historical exhibit that will kick off at 6 p.m. Friday with a free party open to the community. The exhibit will include a display of the 20 posters created to promote each year's festival, which will be auctioned off.

When the music ends at the SeaWalk Pavilion, the after-fest jam sessions will begin at 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 8 p.m. Sunday at Mojo Kitchen BBQ and Blues Bar, 1500 Beach Blvd. The after-fest jam sessions will be hosted by Shane Dwight and will feature festival performers sitting in.

The festival is free, although premium seating is available for purchase. …

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