BayFest (Oct. 2-4) created excitement with its initial artist announcement. On Friday, Aug. 14, the excitement was rekindled with another round of artist announcements for Alabama’s Largest Music Festival. This round includes a number of local musical acts that will be entertaining the BayFest masses.

As far as main stage additions, Kristy Lee has been added to the line-up and will be performing on the Southern Ford Dealers/Coca-Cola Country Stage. This singer-songwriter will be fresh from a stint of dates opening for The Indigo Girls. The Swon Brothers, who placed third on the hit NBC show “The Voice,” will be joining Lee on the same stage. The AT&T Urban/R&B Stage will feature Brian Gill, best known for his work with ‘80s boy band New Edition. Mainstream rockers Seether will be returning to BayFest and performing on the Bud Light Rock Stage. In addition to these performers, BayFest has chosen Peek, Elle Duhe & $100 Car, Molly Thomas & The Rare Birds, Chronic Blues, Rebecca Roubion, Eterniti, Mario “Multi” Parrish featuring Standout, Alonzo Wood, Battling Delirium, The Vespers, Erin McLendon, Derek Norsworthy, Holli Mosley and Broken Rail as main stage performers.

BayFest’s Launching Pad stage gives the BayFest masses a chance to experience up-and-coming bands. For BayFest 2015, organizers have chosen Stereo Dogs, Love the Hate, The Real Hooks, Bianca Clarke, HanaLena, Daphne & the Mystery Machine, The Bridget Kelly Band, The William Earl Smith Band, Neil Dover, Jacob Needham and Rod Maine.

The Café Stage is BayFest’s locals-only stage. Even though it’s one of the smaller stages, the Café Stage is always packed. This year, the Café Stage audience will feature performances by Deluxe Trio, Brian Graves & DeadLast, Dat B, The Lizards, Al & Cathy, Rogerwood, Back in Action, The String Slingers, Pick of the Litter and Grits N’ Pieces.

Weekend and VIP passes are on sale now through the BayFest website and at area Circle K locations.

Blueberry Jams coming to Fairhope
About the time the area has recuperated from BayFest, the Blueberry Jam Sessions will invade Weeks Bay Plantation in Fairhope for two Sundays. According to the Live & Listen website, the crowd can expect “four bands, offering a wide variety of musical talent while crossing into multiple genres, creating the feel of a one-day music festival.” The Blueberry Jam Sessions will also be a philanthropic event that will generate funds for the WISP Foundation, which focuses its efforts on creating awareness of safe and organic farming. The first session will take place Sunday, Oct. 18, and include The Motet, Locust Fork Band, New Madrid and The Gate Band. The following session will take place Sunday, Nov. 22. Both events start at 2 p.m., and tickets are available through the Live & Listen website.

Local Blues Challenge winners going to Memphis
On Saturday, Aug. 15, an impressive line-up of regional blues acts met at the Blues Tavern for the Gulf Coast Blues Society’s International Blues Challenge. This competition featured a solo/duo and band category. After a plethora of blues goodness performed on the Blues Tavern stage, two were chosen to compete in the 2016 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tennessee, Jan. 26-30. Jock Webb Sr. and Clarence “Bluesman” Davis will represent the Gulf Coast Blues Society as the solo/duo act, and Jamell Richardson will represent us in Memphis as the band winner.