It’s just about time to usher in autumn and the folks in Columbia, Missouri have a very special way to welcome the fall season: With the Roots N Blues N BBQ Festival. The annual event that celebrates roots music and grilled meats is set to take place Sept. 30 through Oct. 2 at Stephens Lake Park and feature national stars like Grace Potter, Jason Isbell, Ben Folds, the Mavericks, Blues Traveler, the Avett Brothers, and many others. Columbia-based acts will be on the bill each day of the festival too, including three of the city’s most popular acts, the Fried Crawdaddies, Brad Cunningham Band, and Oversight Committee. We checked in with each band to get their thoughts on Roots N Blues N BBQ and to find out what else they’re up to; read below for the scoop!
The Fried Crawdaddies – Appearing Sept. 30, 5:00 PM
This long-running Columbia-based 5-piece band, represents the local scene in a kind of unique way; their music is informed by the heritage of the countless songwriters and musicians who have traveled the nearby Missouri and Mississippi Rivers. Their “river music” is an amalgam of blues, soul, country, folk, rock, and more, and it will be the first that festival-goers hear as the band has the honor of playing the big party’s opening show.
The Fried Crawdaddies’ woodwind player Tony Lotven says about Roots N Blues N BBQ, “We are excited that our longtime friend and Roots N Blues N BBQ creator Richard King has chosen us to kick off the festival. We love the growth of the festival, the fantastic acts that Richard brings to Columbia and the spectacular setting of Stephens Lake Park in the heart of the city.” The members of the Fried Crawdaddies also collaborate with other local musicians, and band guitarist Pete Szkolka plays keyboards for Chump Change, another Columbia-based band also appearing at the festival.
Oversight Committee – Appearing Sept. 30, 6:00 PM
These purveyors of eclectic funk, jazz and rock will be making their first appearance at Roots N Blues N BBQ. Says bass man Jeff Mueller, “We’ve all attended the festival and watched it develop through the years and are proud to have it in Columbia. While we’re pumped to be performing, we’re also excited to see the Avett Brothers, Jason Isbell, the Budos Band and many other artists on the line up.’
The Oversight Committee recently warmed up the crowd at a Here Come the Mummies show and their upcoming plans include recording their first album and developing a third set for their live show.
Brad Cunningham Band – Appearing Oct. 1, 11:00 AM
This band is currently making the move from regional band to national band; their new album, distributed by Sony RED, is called Every Inch of Texas and it is climbing up the Texas Country Chart rapidly. That doesn’t mean the band is saying adios to their Columbia roots though, as Cunningham and his wife are in the process of building a brand new home in Columbia.
Says Cunningham about Roots N Blues N BBQ, “We have played the festival a few times but never on a main stage until now. That being said, each time we have played, we leave feeling recharged. We get to meet and hang out with some of our favorite artists, eat great food, watch shows backstage and sign guitars. It’s a pretty sweet gig!”
For more information on the Roots N Blues N BBQ Festival go here.
For ideas on other fun things to do in Columbia go here.