Sisters Folk Festival is pleased to announce the lineup for its new single-day concert offering on August 1, Close To Home. This unique, outdoor live concert will implement state-recommended guidelines for large gatherings during COVID-19, with limits on attendance and socially distanced seating pods at the Sisters Art Works lawn, 204 W Adams Ave. in Sisters. Saturday evening’s lineup will include fan-favorites Ron Artis II & The Truth, David Jacobs-Strain and Beth Wood performing together; Portland singer-songwriter Jeffrey Martin; and Portland musician Haley Johnsen.
Close To Home has been curated with Oregon-based artists who have been closely connected to the Sisters Folk Festival and community over the years. Creative Director Brad Tisdel says, “In light of all that is going on, we are thrilled to bring great songwriters, musicians and citizens back to Sisters for an evening of live music. Ron Artis II, Beth Wood, David Jacobs-Strain and Jeffrey Martin have all contributed in different ways over many years to the vibrancy of the festival and our community. They are also world-class musicians, performers, poets and artists.”
The lineup brings both diversity and musical alchemy. Ron Artis II is a special talent, composed of soul-searching lyrics, phenomenal guitar prowess and immense heart in delivery. He has previously been the Sisters Folk Festival encore returning artist, and each time performs unique sets, with varied feel, and always unmatched in musicianship and absolute presence. Ron Artis II & The Truth will perform as an electric trio, showcasing Ron’s guitar mastery, piano keyboard and singing skills.
David Jacobs-Strain is a fierce slide guitar player, a song poet from Oregon, and no stranger to Sisters having performed at the Folk Festival, The Belfry, Angeline’s and Sisters Rhythm & Brews numerous times. He’s known for both his virtuosity and spirit of emotional abandon. His live shows move from humorous, subversive blues, to delicate balladry, and then swings back to swampy rock and roll.
Beth Wood is a modern-day troubadour, poet and believer in the power of song. Beth’s adventures have resulted in thousands of live shows, boatloads of wonderful memories and collaborations and she has been a mainstay at Sisters Folk Festival each year, curating and leading the Sisters Community Celebration on Sunday mornings. Beth and David will perform a special set together, a debut performance for Close To Home that will no doubt be entertaining, enlightening and musically wonderful.
Jeffrey Martin has carved a unique niche in the music world, and when you hear his songs, you realize his music is truly something special. His lyrical breadth is honed from years in the making as a former high school English teacher, a studied folk songwriter and a deep listener of great writing. Jeffrey has been part of the Sisters Folk Festival’s Song Academy as well as contributing numerous years to the Americana Song Academy for Youth, which he teaches with grace and unflinching honesty.
In early 2019, Haley Johnsen had just about wrapped her first solo tour of Europe when she arrived in London for her final concert and learned the unsettling news that the artist she was supposed to open for had scrapped the show. The multitalented singer-songwriter thought she would have a three-day UK vacation, but her manager had what she calls a trick up his sleeve — a serendipitous single evening recording session at the historic Abbey Road Studios, which is now being released as Haley’s first guitar and vocal-only album, London Sessions. Its lead single, Feel the Water, was released March 13.
Sisters Folk Festival has carefully designed the Close To Home concert to adhere to Oregon’s Phase 2 state reopening and COVID-19 safety guidelines. The five-hour concert event is limited to a maximum of 250 people, which includes all persons on-site: ticket holders, musicians, staff, contractors, vendors and volunteers. As a result, a limit of 190 purchased tickets will be available to the public, and seating will be sold in reserved socially distanced pods of two- or four- person social groups. Attendees will need to bring their own low-back festival chairs and/or blankets for seating. The venue will be configured as a one way in (west entrance) and one way out (east exit) flow. Wearing of masks or face coverings will be required and enforced when patrons are outside of their seating pod area. Concert-goers will be able to purchase food and beverages and then return to their seating pod area to enjoy.
Organizers ask that all attendees comply with masks, social distancing and hand sanitation to help keep yourself and others safe. If for any reason compliance is either a hardship or otherwise inconvenient, organizers request that you please refrain from buying a ticket and attending. This newly imagined live music event will only be successful with full cooperation of everyone involved.
Doors open at 4pm and music will take place from 5-10pm. There will be a food vendor, on-site beer and cider sales, plus bike valet parking hosted by Blazin’ Saddles. Attendees are encouraged to bike to the concert if possible. No outside alcohol is permitted. Tiered pricing for all advanced tickets is now being offered. Please note that seating is only being sold in two- and four-person pods; individual tickets are not available. If the event is cancelled for any reason, ticket-buyers will automatically receive a full refund. For more information and tickets, please visit sffclosetohome.eventbrite.com.