Bragg Jam features more bands, greater variety than past years

Telegraph correspondentJuly 25, 2013 

Dirty Guv’nahs is one of the headliners of the 2013 Bragg Jam.

More live music and more venues await festivalgoers at this year’s Bragg Jam Concert Crawl.

Macon’s signature music festival kicks off Saturday night with 56 bands across 15 different stages -- a bump from last year’s 12 stages and 46 bands.

“It’s a rapid expansion on our end,” said Everett Verner, Bragg Jam’s marketing co-chair. “More venues are asking to participate trying to facilitate more genres.”

Musically, this year’s schedule offers a little bit of everything.

“We’ve got our more traditional Americana country-leaning thing that’s kind of been the (festival’s) backbone,” Verner said. “We have a lot of local bands. We have indie rock. We have DJs. We have blues. We have bluegrass. We have hip-hop. We have some funk. We have country. We have grunge. We have metal. We have alternative rock. We have jam bands. It’s all over the place. It’s easier to say we don’t have classical music. We apologize for that. Otherwise you should be able to find something to listen to.”

The music starts as early as 5 p.m. and will play into the early hours of Sunday.

“Our headliners are the Dirty Guv’nahs out of Knoxville, DJ Lethal who was the DJ for Limp Bizkit and House of Pain from the ’90s and then ... the Front Bottoms are an indie-pop band out of New Jersey.”

Tickets are $25 and will be sold in Third Street Park for all the downtown venues.

“We plan to have centralized ticketing, which is a pretty huge change from the past,” Verner said. “In the past, you could buy tickets at any door at the venue.”

The three venues that aren’t located downtown -- Hangar Bar and Grill, Twang Southern Tastes and Sound and Mellow Mushroom -- will have tickets for sale at the door.

“We’re also accepting credit cards the day of,” Verner said. “You can also pre-order tickets (online at www.braggjam.org). We’ve never done that before.”

Another change will be the closure of Cherry Street to cars between Second Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard.

“Hopefully, that will make it a little less chaotic in the middle of the street when there are a few thousand people streaming around downtown,” Verner said.

This year’s Bragg Jam also features six venues open to all ages all night. Three venues will become 18 and up between 9-10 p.m. and the stages at the Hummingbird Stage and Taproom and the Hangar will be 21 and up all night.

“Last year, we only had a couple of places for all ages so some of the younger, under 18 people felt like they were stuck in one or two places,” Verner said.

As with past Bragg Jam festivals, the city will be allowing open containers in the downtown area and there will be free shuttles available between venues.

“We’ll have shuttles going from downtown to Mellow Mushroom, downtown to Twang, downtown to the Hangar and one that is circling downtown all night,” Verner said. “They should run until everything is closed ... the idea is to get everyone home after.”

Bragg Jam started as a tribute to brothers and local musicians Brax and Tate Bragg, who were killed in a 1999 car accident.

The impromptu jam session grew over the years but friends of the Bragg brothers and fellow musicians have remained a staple of the festival with an annual performance by Friends of Brax. Friends of Brax is scheduled to perform with Hank Vegas at the Rookery at 10:30 p.m.

Bragg Jam Concert Crawl

When: 5 p.m. Saturday

Where: Varied locations in Macon

Cost: $25, $20 in advance

Information: www.braggjam.org

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