The free music shows begin Friday at Wide Open Bluegrass

tgoldsmith@newsobserver.comSeptember 26, 2013 

— Yo, acoustic music fans in Raleigh, Chapel Hill, Durham and beyond: Friday and Saturday are your days to celebrate if you have yet to check out the International Bluegrass Music Association shows in downtown Raleigh.

As ticketed shows in clubs and at Red Hat Amphitheater continue, great acoustic music also will be pouring forth free from Wide Open Bluegrass Festival stages from noon to 11 p.m. both days.

The stage near Hargett and Fayetteville streets is labeled “Roots and Branches of Bluegrass,” and the one at Martin and Fayetteville streets is labeled “North Carolina’s Finest Homegrown Bluegrass.” Also, a mix of local, national and international acts will take the Center Stage on City Plaza, near the Marriott.

Among the top-shelf attractions are big-dog guitarist Bryan Sutton in a duet with Courtney Hartman from rising-star band Della Mae, at 4:15 p.m., and the multi-IBMA-nominated Balsam Range at 9:45 p.m. Both are Friday at the Martin Street stage. Friday night at the Center Stage winds up with the all-star lineup of the Kruger Brothers, the Boxcars and the SteelDrivers.

Add in a kids stage, a dance tent and the N.C. Whole Hog State Barbecue Championship, and there should be an attraction for almost anyone’s taste.

A full list of Wide Open festival events is at

Goldsmith: 919-829-8929

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