Will McLean Music Festival Performers


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“2PM” is Pete Price, Pete Hennings, and Mike Jurgensen, a trio of talented musicians who blend their varied musical talents into an eclectic mix of material, from original songs, to obscure covers, to well-known standards. With Price on guitar and bass, Hennings on guitar, bass, and mandolin, and Jurgensen on guitar and harmonica, these three performers combine tight instrumentation with pristine vocal harmonies to delight audiences of all musical tastes. All three are talented songwriters and have performed solo as well as with other bands: Hennings and Price with Jon Semmes and the Florida Friends, and Jurgensen and Hennings with Myriad. The combination of Pete, Pete, and Mike as “2PM”, however, is a unique trio that has delighted audiences at acoustic venues and folk festivals around the state of Florida.

"2PM" has released three CDs: “Keepin’ Time”, "Let's Just Play One More", and their most recent,  “Writing on the Wall”. The band will be releasing its fourth recording project in early 2023.

Alivia Hunter

Alivia Hunter is a student at UF studying history. She writes and performs modern folk music inspired by old folk tunes, Greek mythology, and fantasy books. If you’d like to find her music on the Internet, she has an album called “Thoughts about Life” out on Apple Music, Amazon Music, and Spotify.

Amy Carol Webb

She's the girl next door and no ordinary woman, who got her first guitar at age 11 and didn't look back. Likewise, she came to the Florida for the first time more than thirty years ago and knew she was home. From Florida’s rivers to legendary forests of France, from historic festival stages, to the Kennedy Center -- teaching songwriting and voice from kindergarten to university -- inside prison razor wire and outside in the streets in the name of justice and human rights – she raises the roof and lifts our spirits with beauty, grit, and grace. She first played the South Florida Folk Festival in 1997, with nothing but a cassette tape recorded at home in her Miami Beach apartment – then won that festival’s song competition the next year to help launch her first CD. Now, after countless awards, a million miles on the road, fourteen CD’s – two of them tributes to Florida Folk Music recorded in festival campgrounds -- and a calling to Unitarian Universalist ministry, Amy says, “what matters most are the people I love,” in this place music for me was reborn. The press has named her “One for the New Millenium,’ and on of Florida’s “Ten Greatest Folk Singers of All Time.” She just calls herself, the “Songweaver.”


The band Aripeka is named after the Seminole Indian Leader who successfully defied U.S. Government orders to leave Florida.

Band members enjoy a variety of musical styles.  Aripeka tries to adapt its music to the audience.  Its main goal is to have fun and engage the audience with selections from a variety of musical genres.

Greg Thomas: Founding member, Greg plays a myriad of instruments including accordion, fiddle, guitar and harmonica. Once it was said that he plays everything except a didgeridoo and a glockenspiel, to which he replied,  "I have a glockenspiel!  He also sings lead and harmony is his specialty.

Sue Ann & Herb Reichelt : Sue Ann plays a variety of percussion instruments and answers questions about "what is that instrument with the hubcap?"- it's a banjo tuned dobro!   Herb is the banjo playing "Godfather of Dunnellon Bluegrass" but tones it down a bit for Will McLean.

Phyllis & Tom Lorich: Phyllis plays upright bass and adds an element of organization (such as it is) to the group.  Phyllis says, " At 39 you're never too old to learn something new! " Tom plays rhythm guitar, sings lead vocals and states that Phyllis is indeed 39 years old.

Art Crummer

Art Crummer is a songwriter who is also a 20-time ribbon winner in Florida Old-Time championship singing, flat-pick guitar, finger style guitar as well as a in the Dobro category.  He holds ten BLUE ribbons.

Since 1995, Art has lead workshops in Dobro, slide guitar, Flat-pick and Finger-style guitar, as well as gospel singing.

Art was awarded the prestigious Edward Flemming, Jr. award in 2008.

A Florida resident since 1960, Art is the son of an Appalachian preacher. He has performed with Blues Country, The Don Grooms Band, Ron & Mary Johnson, Charley Groth, Bobbie Lee and the Travelers,  Sue Grooms, Spare Parts (a barbershop quartet),  and others.

Art is accompanied by Alan Hill on standup bass and Patsy Murray on standup fiddle, Jeffrey Shapiro on Clarinet and Dave Willkomm on sit-down percussion.

Bear and Robert

Bear and Robert are Cindy Bear and Franc Robert, an award winning singer-songwriter newlywed duo
from Jacksonville, FL. Together their acoustic sound has been described as a deep well of Folk, Blues, and
Americana with a high energy je ne sais quoi! Their catchy melodies, toe tapping rhythms, and soulful
lyrics will touch your heart in many different ways, and will always leave you wanting more.
Bear and Robert together have played Folk, Blues and Acoustic music festivals, house concerts, charity
fundraisers, and venues all over Florida, with Franc branching out to tour from the Southeastern US to
his native Montreal, Canada. Their CD, “Hearts in Blues,” Franc’s solo and band CD’s, and Cindy’s solo CD
“Start Over Again” are available on Itunes, Amazon, Spotify, or on their website at

Bill and Eli Perras

As 25 year veterans sharing original Florida folk song's and stories, Bill & Eli Perras' use their gifts to carry on the legacy of the many past and notable Florida folk entertainers. Eli has a unique gift of storytelling and sings tunefully without folderol while using American Sign Language to back her voiced words. Bill harmonically backs Eli and uses his award winning finger-style guitar playing style to complete this must see act!.

Bill Metts

Bill started playing finger style guitar during the Country Blues revival of the 60s and fell in love with the music of Taj Mahal, Mississippi John Hurt, Doc Watson and others of that ilk. Just about everything that he has done since then has been in that down home finger-picking style.  He has performed at the annual Mississippi John Hurt Blues Festival in Avalon Ms., at the historic Blue Front Café and at the famous Ground Zero in Clarksdale Mississippi as well. He began writing and composing after moving to Florida in 2004. His songs wander from just plain fun to emotionally moving.

Though he has dabbled in all types of music, today he prefers to play and sing original tunes or traditional Americana roots music.

Bob Patterson

Bob Patterson is an award winning songwriter, singer, storyteller, author, visual artist, and public speaker. He's been performing all over the country at festivals, clubs, radio and television for more than fifty years. He was awarded the Fellow Man and Mother Earth Award by the Stetson Kennedy Foundation and has received a lifetime Achievement award from the Florida Storytelling Association. He's an inaugural inductee in the St Augustine Music Hall of Fame. While capable of performing a wide variety of material, he prefers performances where he can perform his original Florida Stories and Songs. He's an advocate for protecting the wild heart of Florida, especially clean water.

Brian Smalley

Brian's family moved twenty times in eighteen years. So it's no wonder that wanderlust found its way into his music, and into his feet as well. Florida has been home since 1976, beginning in Belle Glade, where Brian started to get semi-serious with the guitar. Then it was rock bands in Winter Haven and Tallahassee, then solo gigs at tiki bars in Cocoa Beach and Orlando. Now he lives in Zellwood, and he's still making music all over the state with intensive guitar arrangements of well known tunes and his own original songs too. His live performances are just that: Lively! Fun and engaging, Brian entertains.

Bryan Rivers and Friends
Band Members: Bryan Rivers, Judy Lynch Kenney, John Kenney 
Bus 86

Bus 86 is a family band that started playing at Willfest back in 2018.  They started as part of the youth program in 2017 and have enjoyed sharing their original songs ever since.  Their inspirations include artists such as The Beatles, The Eagles, Billy Joel, Jim Croce, The Cars and many more. Family members: William Hackbarth, Stacy Hackbarth, Casey Hackbarth, Talon Hackbarth.

Carly Bak

Carly is an award winning songwriter, performing in and around the Florida Folk circuit since 2007.

Carly Is currently working on becoming a Certified Music Practitioner.  Working with various patients in need of healing therapy, My passion is to reach out to women and children who have suffered abuse and patients who suffer from PTSD. Music has always been my therapy and I know that others will benefit as well.

 She has been a volunteer for the Will McLean Festival as part of the set up and tear down crew; Host for the Sunday Sampler and help produce a compilation of songs from The Will McLean songwriter’s competition winners called, Soul Of The Hawk.
Charlie Robertson

"If you've never experienced Charlie Robertson's music, you owe it to yourself. He's like Van Zandt, Prine and Dylan with a drawl.

Charlie's subtle poetry and eccentric perspectives will leave you sharing his deep affection for the parade of southern characters who populate his songs." David Beede

From Gamble Rogers...: "Charlie Robertson is God's personal songwriter."

After opening a show for Tom Paxton, TP said "...who the Hell was that guy? My stuff

 can wait....I want to hear more."
Chris Kahl

Chris is a musician and songwriter that highlights Florida History through his original music. He started performing during the late 1990’s, and after graduating from Rollins College, he continued his musical journey in London for the next few years where he sang in the subways of the London Underground and performed numerous times on the BBC.

After returning to Florida, Chris has been working as an Artist in Residence in Central Florida Schools, and has been involved with the Florida Humanities Council Road Scholar program, 21st Century Art Explorers, and Florida State Touring Roster to bring his Florida songs and stories to students and audiences statewide

Chris has released two Florida-themed albums titled Orange Blossom Memories (2006) and Sunshine Kid (2009).  Many of the songs have been recognized in the annual best new Florida song contest, including “Out on Cedar Key” which was one of the winners of the 2009 contest.  Chris enjoys singing of the state’s history, and looks forward to carrying on the Florida troubadour tradition for years to come.

Chris Kastle

Chris Kastle is an award winning singer, storyteller, songsmith, author, artist and educator from
St. Augustine. She is a professional touring performer and seasoned traveler who offers insight
into a lifetime of adventure. Her original songs possess great imagery and have the occasional
flavor of Celtic and Maritime traditions.

Chuck Hardwicke and the Hartline

Chuck Hardwicke is a talented singer songwriter, his songs are images of Florida . Song titles such as  "Oklawaha Mist", "Drifting with the Wind" and "St John's River Blues"  lure you in while the band adds a special magic. The Hart Line consists of three talented individuals who are accomplished musicians in their own right. Karan Newman, mandolin, fiddle, and occasional kazoo; Bill Snyder, upright bass, harmonica; and Dean Parrish, lead guitar. Along with their musicianship, each member of Chuck Hardwicke and the Hart Line contributes vocally, adding to their whole sound. In addition to Florida songs, the band may venture into old-time, swing, blues, old country, and even a Dylan song or two. The group is well known at folk festivals all over Florida.

Corey Hall

Organic, Florida Grown - Folk, Blues, and Roots Music!

Corey Hall shines on stages along the Emerald Coast as an emerging singer songwriter. With inspiration from blues legends Robert Johnson and Mississippi John Hurt as well as iconic songwriters like Bob Dylan and Dave Von Ronk. Corey Hall is a fresh face in the Florida Folk scene & brings the essence of Roots Music alive through charismatic storytelling and earthy fingerpicking .Through his dynamic performances, Corey pays tribute to an earlier era through his music that evokes a bygone era in the present.  Corey Hall hales from Panama City, FL.  Marcus Haines is on percussion.

craig daniel hardin with Solesse

Sol = sun or one
esse = synonym for essence or to be
Solesse = to be one under the sun

Performers : Craig Hardin, Mary Ann Hoffman, Kevan McCann, David Starling

Dan Gribbin
With the release here in the summer of 2018 of the new CD, "Florida in My Soul," I find myself surrounded by musical friends every weekend. The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Ormond Beach, where I have a hand in the programming, is the site of much of this activity. But the Will McLean Festival puts me in touch with fellow fans of Pete Seeger, who have encouraged me to record "Pete Seeger in Paradise" on the new album. And I must put in a plug for the Lake County Folk Festival, where "The Deadbeat" won Best Funny Song, last fall. Please give a listen to "A Friend Like You," where all Scortino adds his terrific dobro. It's a full musical life!  Dan Gribbin, Jan Sheldon, Joel Kelley

Dennis Devine

Dennis Devine grew up in Fort Lauderdale and moved to San Antonio in Pasco County when he
was 18 years old. Dennis has traveled and performed throughout Florida, creating music from
solo coffee house and listening room music, to performing on stage and on recordings with Will
McLean, Don Grooms. His shoes are full of the many miles of Florida Sand that brought him to
where he is today. Dennis plays a wide variety of acoustic instruments, primarily playing guitar, mandolin, banjo,
fiddle, flute, penny whistle and harmonica. Having participated in over 25 recording projects,
Dennis has a great deal of studio experience and has been involved in the co-producing of
many album projects. Dennis has played and studied the music of the Appalachians, the songs and stories of Florida,
and the music and rhtymns of world cultures. His music is the song within his heart that keeps
singing. A bird can not keep from singing. The music is everywhere, can’t you hear it? So, how
can I keep from singing?

Doug Spears

With sand in his blood and orange blossom honey in his soul Doug Spears is the finest blend of storyteller, songwriter and musician.  A fifth generation Florida native, Doug’s stories and songs have been welcomed on listening room stages, in house concerts and at festival and music venues across the country for more than 30 years.  Drawing comparisons to Gordon Lightfoot, John Denver, James Taylor and others, his music is heard worldwide on independent radio across the US, Canada, Australia and Europe.

Emmett Carlisle

Florida boy working on his 8th CD of original songs. Americana, Blues/grass, and Folk Rock love songs mixed together might describe the sound. Some songs are about the history, environment, and characters of the great State of Florida. Emmett plays most of the big Festivals in Florida including the Will Mclean Festival, Gamble Rogers Festival, Florida Folk Festival, Sarasota Folk Festival, Clay County Fair, and many venues around the State.  Selected to play the Johnson City Folk Festival, Unicoi, Tennessee.

His newest CD is "Down the Road to Barberville". My 7th CD, “Higher Hopes, Bigger Dreams”, was named CD of the Year (Song Writer) by the Florida Times - Union. Thanks to everyone who likes and shares with the coolest folks of all --The Fans. Peace.

Frankie J and the Chicken Parade

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What the heck is Frankie Jay and the Chicken Parade?" one might ask. It's a curious group of like-minded musicians with a particular sense of humor and humanity. Frank Julian, AKA Frankie Jay, leads the parade, followed closely by Curtis Wayne Schaper on bass, Pasco Paul Belmore on dobro, Laird Duran on fiddle and Ron Townsend on percussion. At any performance, other musicians may march along with the parade, always in time and frequently providing harmony.

Frankie Jay and the Chicken Parade play music that is a little bit folk, a little bit bluegrass, and a smattering of rock and roll. Frankie is an award-winning songwriter with an excellent voice, who clearly enjoys leading this band of musicians and those that can be persuaded to add to their ranks at various events.

Frank Lindamood

Frank Lindamood has been playing Old Time American music for over 50 years. His love for the music was passed down from his father, a native of the mountains of West Virginia.     His weapons of choice are the banjo, harmonica and the resonator guitar. He sings with great volume and little subtlety. His influences are as old as the music itself---Samantha Bumgarner, Roscoe Holcomb, John Hurt and Skip James, to name just a few.

He has, of late, been trying to write new material on the great themes of Life, Love and Death, involving figures like Adam and Jesus, Persephone and Prometheus, Beethoven and Gamble Rogers, among others.

 He is a retired carpenter and stagehand who helped raise three sons by the Bad Example method and now has three grandchildren and seven step-grand children and is proud of them all. He lives north of Sopchoppy in a home-made cabin in some old turpentine woods.

Grant Livingston

Singer/Songwriter/Guitarist Grant Livingston has been a Florida favorite since the mid-1980s. Upbeat, with an
offbeat sense of humor, Grant Livingston weaves history and the environment into his songs. He has written about South Florida pioneers Henry Flagler and Julia Tuttle, the invasion of the Everglades by Melaleuca trees and pythons, Halley's Comet, armadillos, barnacles, greyhounds and grey cats in graveyards.  And if you ask him, Grant will reveal, in song of course, the reason he always wears a hat. Livingston's has four CDs of original songs to his credit. Recordings One Everglades and Florida Rain celebrate Florida's natural and cultural environment. Let Me Off The Leash, produced in conjunction with Nashville producer Cliff Goldmacher, capitalizes on his Livingston’s swing influences. Solo recording The One That Got Away features guitar and vocals.

Grant Peeples

A self-described “tree-hugger that watches NASCAR,” Grant Peeples is known for his axe-sharp socio-political tunes, raucous humor and heart-gigging ballads.  His shows are a roiling mix of funny stuff and not-funny stuff.   He doesn’t do a lot of lo-ooove songs, but when he does, it's liable to break your heart.

He is the recipient of the Focus Foundation Award for Creative Excellence, which cited the “humor, compassion and wisdom of his songs,” and their "unflinching social insight and cultural acuity.” Grant tours coast to coast, and is a regular performer at The Woody Guthrie Folk Festival, the 30A Songwriters Festival, and The Florida, Folk Festival. He has toured The Netherlands twice, where FolkForum.nl described him “…a pure storyteller, in the best American folk tradition…” and his show “…one of those gems that you will remember for a long time…”

He lived on a small island off the Miskito Coast of Nicaragua for eleven years. There he installed the island's first flushing toilet, rescued sea turtles, and built an eco-resort and dive shop. When he returned to the US in 2006, he returned to a homeland whose changes bordered on futuristic.  And much of what he writes about today is informed by that experience.  Gurf Morlix, who has produced Lucinda Williams, Mary Gauthier, Ray Wiley Hubbard, Robert Earl Keen, and Slaid Cleaves---has produced and performed on five of Grant’s records, including his most recent release of original songs, “Settling Scores Vol II” (2018.) Grant will release a new record, "A Murder of Songs" early in 2023.

Hannah's Whirl

Paul Arnone and Tami Wingard joined together to form Hannah’s Whirl in 2003.  They are both native Floridians from Tampa.  The music is comprised of Paul’s original guitar-driven songs and a sprinkling of cover tunes.  Tami accompanies Paul with vocal harmonies, percussion and harmonica.  Together they have traveled within the state playing house concerts and the seasonal festival circuit.

Holt & Cabe

Holt & Cabe is a brother duo from Southwest Florida that composes and performs original Americana music. Their unique, tongue-in-cheek story songs take audiences on an acoustic listening journey. Holt (on guitar) and Cabe (on mandolin)
have been working together since 2016 and have played on stages across the continental US. In 2017, Holt and Cabe attended their first ever Bluegrass kids camp and fell in love with Bluegrass. Soon after, their family sold their home, and they hit the road. During their three-year cross-country road trip, they attended open mics, music camps, and festivals including the Walnut Valley Festival, the Oklahoma International Bluegrass Festival, Merlefest, and many others. They also learned to play other instruments including harmonica, ukulele, foot tambourine, fiddle, banjo, resonator guitar, accordion, saxophone, and more

In Good Company

The combined talents of these four accomplished musicians merge together and become even greater than the sum of their parts!
In Good Company is particularly gifted with harmonies and the use of different instruments. They perform a very polished collection of original songs, well-known folk artist's songs, and select cover songs, including some that you can sing along to! In Good Company members are: Curtis Wayne Schaper on bass and guitar, Lisa Bohn on ukulele and percussion, Ingrid Schaper on guitar and flute, and Mike Worrall on bass, guitar, and mandolin. They all trade off lead vocals and harmony, and swap out instruments for the various songs, which makes for a very interesting and entertaining performance. You can tell that they love to do what they do! You will walk away humming these songs for days to follow.

Jackson Creek

Jackson Creek Band labels it!s style of music as "fiddle-folk-grass”. It is a dynamic blend of music including… Original folk, very mild bluegrass, a bit of cowboy, gospel, and just plain fun! Many of their songs were written by Joe Waller who leads the group. There is truly something for everyone in their music!!! Jackson Creek has two CDs. The newest "I Wish I Was…” includes many of Joe"s original songs. Be sure to check their web page www.folkfiddle.com 

Jane Fallon

Recently transplanted from New Hampshire to Florida, Jane Fallon is no stranger to the Florida Folk scene having won both the Will McLean and South Florida Folk Festival Songwriting competitions. Her original music has been described as “combining humor, intelligence and deep musicality with an artfulness that is unusual”.  She has compiled 8 Cds of original music, written 3 books, and has toured extensively through the US and Europe, garnering many songwriting awards along the way. She is very happy to be here today. Please welcome Jane Ross Fallo

Jeannie Fitchen

As a young teenager Jeanie found her niche in the simple beauty and artistic style of traditional music from around the world.  Throughout the years, however, she began to write and record her own songs earning a 1999 Grammy nomination for her CD, Roads, in the category of Best New Folk Album.  For her long-standing contributions to the folk cultural resources of the state, Jeanie received a Florida Folk Heritage Award in 2001.  For the songs she has written and sung in praise and defense of Florida's natural and cultural heritage, Jeanie was honored with The Fellow Man and Mother Earth Award by The Stetson Kennedy Foundation in 2010.  And In recognition of her legacy of performances as a Florida singer-songwriter and for her contributions to the Florida Folk Festival, Jeanie was inducted into the 2016 Florida Folk Festival’s Legends and Legacy Hall of Fame.

Jenny and the Stray Dogs

The Straydogs Old Time Dance Band are seasoned musicians of old-time, barn dance, string band, contradance tunes, and country waltzes based in Tampa, Florida. The name evolves from the 35 year-old Tampa old-time jam group the Barking Dogs.  The group includes Jenny James on fiddle, Ron Gilbert on guitar, Joe Donahue on mandolin, and Clay Black on banjo. They can be heard playing at contra dances and heritage festivals throughout Florida.

Jerry Mincey with Tony Macaluso

Born in 1947, I was raised on Hank Williams. The fifties led me to Elvis and I knew from the first time I saw him that I wanted to be him! From gospel sings on my Grandmother's front porch to the rock bands of the sixties that I played in, It has been a great journey. I grew up in Winter Haven, Florida with Gram Parsons, Jim Stafford, Kent LaVoie, Carl and Jesse Chambers just to name a few.

I was preordained to be a musician. I played in my first rock band at 14, by my first year of college I was lead guitar player for "The Spades" one of the premier bands to come out of Central Florida. A Florida tour with The Zombies and The Searchers, secured us a recording contract and a subsequent trip to the RCA studios in Nashville.
In the early nineties I went back to college, got off the booze,and started writing songs. This opened the door for a whole 'nother part of my story. "Me and Mr. Cole" released in 2000 and "Narcoossee Lucie" in 2006 have helped me to become a successful performing songwriter. I play many festivals including the Florida Folk Festival, The Gamble Rogers Folk Festival, The Will McLean Folk Festival, bars, colleges, and juke joints near and far..

Jim Carrick and Charley Simmons

Charley Simmons & Jim Carrick. 2022

Jim Carrick’s masterful Travis picking and interpretation of classic songs is always fresh and exciting. Charley Simmons, also a killer Travis style picker, spent much of his life in Utah and his original songs paint beautiful pictures of that part of the world as well as Florida.
JIM CARRICK, St. Augustine Florida’s tried and true troubadour, is a master of the finger style guitar. Jim blends American finger style folk, blues, ragtime, bluegrass, old time standards, jazz guitar, and an overall understanding of finger style guitar into his
body of work. Jim acquired much of his finger style guitar technique directly from Gamble Rogers and is proud to carry on Gamble’s legacy through songs and stories. Jim’s body of work includes unmatched tales of enchantment, love, danger, joy,
heartache, loss, and stories of reckless abandon that occur most frequently during youth. Jim has become a St. Augustine icon, an exquisite storyteller, and of course, a hometown hero to the local music scene.
CHARLEY SIMMONS Charley began playing the guitar at age nine. By the age of sixteen, Charley was earning money traveling and performing throughout his home state of Delaware with a band. But it wasn’t until his move to St. Augustine, Florida in
1970, and his exposure to the late Gamble Rogers, that he began to develop his own finger picking solo style. Since that time, Charley has been 1992 Utah State Flattop Guitar Champion, the 2002 Wyoming State Fingerstyle Champion, the winner of the
2003 Gamble Rogers Fingerstyle Guitar Competition and a winner in the 2005 KRCL Singer/Songwriter Competition. Charley’s music is as diverse as his musical influences have been, drawing on folk, blues, bluegrass and jazz.

Joe Mark

Songwriter and artist, Joe Mark, has been performing at folk festivals for over 50 years. First invited to White Spring by Cousin Thelma Boltin in 1968 Joe sang at the Florida Folk Festival. Playing guitar and fiddle on traditional and original folk songs, Joe offers stories and memories of friendship with many of the folk music legends of Florida, like Will McLean, Gamble Rogers, Jeanie Fitchen, Dale Crider, Bob Patterson, and many more.

John Bois

John came to the US with a band called The Dingoes. They were about to go on tour with Lynyard Skynyard when that band’s plane crashed. The Dingoes broke up soon after this and were unheard of until John and the band were inducted into the Australian Music Hall of Fame. This was because they were credited with influencing such bands as AC/DC and INXS. John became a biology teacher and continued to work on his music. He has completed three albums (available on johnbois.com) and is working on his fourth. He has written songs and produced records for Cheryl Wheeler and Rita Youngman. Jonathan Edwards also did one of his songs. He is currently playing with the Highland Celts and Jon Corneal’s Compadres. John also has a book published in Australia and a scientific paper published in a peer reviewed jounal (Historical Biology).

John Dickie with Collapsible B

Originally from Baltimore, Maryland, John Dickie IV is a singer and songwriter currently living in St. Augustine, Florida. With lyrics in the spirit of artists like the late great John Prine and a voice many times compared to David Gray, John offers a relaxed and thoughtful approach to his music. He’s often called unique.

 As the creative leader of the all original band Collapsible B in North Florida, he is a regular at several events such as the Riverside Arts Market, Barberville, the Gamble Rogers Festival, the Will McLean Festival, the Sing Out Loud Festival, and the Lions Seafood Festival. He also has regular weekly and monthly gigs anywhere from the Milltop in St. Augustine, FL to the Town Pump near Asheville, NC.
Many of his songs are currently getting regular radio airplay throughout the world on stations from Florida to New Zealand, Belgium, and the UK. Videos are available on YouTube as well. John will be joined by a great lineup for this performance, including Michael Elias on mandolin and Dave Partridge on bass.

John R. Butler

John R. Butler first played music for money during the Johnson administration.  The LYNDON Johnson administration.  Butler went on to play in a number of bands and as a solo performer throughout high school, college and later. 

John R. Butler’s songwriting has garnered prizes at the Kerrville (TX) New Folk competition, the Will McLean Music Festival and the South Florida Folk Festival. One of Butler’s songs was included in the soundtrack of the 2013 feature film, “Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3-D,” starring absolutely no one you’d recognize.

These days Butler airs out his musical mojo alongside Susan Chastain, erst while jazz chanteuse and current belter of ballads, diva of ditties, marquessa of melodies. They will be joined by the undeniably undeniable Susie Hulcher in holy bratrimony as Little Fools.

Johnny Debt

Johnny Debt - 

A Hobo-Nouveau, Florida-Balladeering, One-Bum-Band from Indiantown.

Julian/Cherkinsky Orchestra

Summer, 2015 - In a small musical getaway known as "The Farm", in the ancient forests North of Brooksville, Florida, Frank Julian and Jordan Cherkinsky were commissioned by Scottish Baroness Mo Schneider to collaborate writing "12 songs in 12 days". 
Eight months later the twelfth was completed. Joined in the recording by bassist Jerry Ledsome and fiddler Jonathan L. Widger; all songs were recorded live at "The Doublewide" house at The Farm.
Two of our songs were listed in the "Top Ten Finalists" for The 2016 Will McLean Music Festival
Best Florida Songs: "The Florida That I Love" & "The Ballad of Killer Joe & Naughty Nancy".
Another song, “Gypsies of the Sea” was listed in the "Top Ten Finalists" for The 2019 Will McLean Music Festival Best Florida Songs.
We are joined by: Mickey Abraham, Pasco Paul Belmore, Ron Townsend, Jim Rigel, Jim Robertson, Garret Alvar

Just Folks

Just Folks is the name cause that’s who we are and what we play….. mostly. We love the influences of Old Time music, Gillian Welch, Jason Isbell, and Robert Earl Keen… to name a few. With James on fiddle, Dave on dulcimer, Diane and Danna on guitars, and Michael on mandolin, and everyone on vocals we have developed a full sound. With our original songs, there is something for everyone

Keith Hope

Keith Hope is a 6th generation Floridian. He grew up in Wauchula in Hardee County.

In 1835 his ancestors were the first European settlers in what is now Hernando, County.

In his youth and college, Keith played in folk and rock groups. Later, he moved to Nashville where he studies songwriting at workshops and seminars, some taught by country music legends. In 1992, he attended the Florida Folk Festival where he met Frank Thomas who mentored him and encouraged him to start writing songs about Florida.  Keith releases a cd of original songs about Florida, entitled “Key Biscayne Cowboy.” Later, he released a live DVD of a concert at the Luna Star

Café in Miami. He also released his second, two disc, Cd entitled “Florida Hurricane.” One song on it – “How Strong Your Love Can Be – won first place in a Songwriters Guild of America Song Contest in the pop category. He has performed for many years at the Florida Folk Festival, the Will McClean Festival, the South Florida Folk Festival, as well as other venues in Florida.

Kim LeCouteur

Hailing from Micanopy, Florida is the singer-songwriter, Kim LeCouteur. Having always held a close connection and deep appreciation for music, LeCouteur first picked up the guitar when she was 29 years old and has been hooked ever since. During her time in Austin, Texas she discovered her love of Americana and all things folk through the vibrant music scene. It was this environment that encouraged Kim to find her own voice and perform for others.

With such ease, LeCouteur blends a variety of styles and influences to create her own signature indie folk sound. Her voice carries with it a warm and unforgettable tone, which makes her stand out in today’s music landscape. Every line and hook has a mesmerizing sound attached to it, which can be experienced first hand in tracks such as, “Sugarcane” and “Wild Florida” from her debut album, Out Where Nobody Goes.

“I believe music is essential to my well being,” echoes LeCouteur as she discusses the importance and of having music as a constant theme in her every day life.

Lee Hunter and Joey Kerr

Since 1992, Lee Hunter, has been placing her own stamp on folk/roots music. Dirty Linen Magazine has described her former duo as “captivating” and “one of the best kept secrets in America”. Lee continues making music with new partnerships and collaborations, most often with outstanding guitarist and songwriter, Joey Kerr. Lee is celebrating the release of her latest CD recording, “Between Nothing and All” released in October 2022. What you’ll hear is inventive approaches to a mix of clever original songs and traditional tunes pulled from the roots of American music. Always aiming to convey her passion for the story..
…..this is the magic of the music.

Lisa Thomas and Friends

Lisa plays original Florida songs. Friends that will be accompaning her: Ron Litschauer, Bari Litschuer, Dawn DeWitt, Stan Geberer, Rochelle Morris, Dora Anne

Lucky Mud

Seven years in the early days of Nashville taught Mike & Maggie McKinney what they did not want. The heart of music should not be lost in the business of music. The music that Lucky Mud writes/sings/plays comes from the dirt of their native Florida. Mix that with a little saltwater, sweat and tears and you have Mud, Lucky Mud. Lucky Mud plays SwampyTonk and Folkabilly.

Mary Ann Dinella and Friends

Mary Ann Dinella is accompanied by Jean DiNella McCormick, Sabrina DiNella and Miranda DiNella. Mary Ann along with being an accomplished singer, songwriter. also contrubtes her artist talents to the Will McLean Festival.

Mary Beth Campbell and Friends

Mary Beth Campbell and Friends have been performing at Musical Festivals throughout Florida for approximately 15 years.  Their music is an eclectic and spirited blend of original music, including songs about Florida.  This year the group will include Mary Beth Campbell on guitar and vocals, Chris Campbell on stand-up bass and harmonica, Johnathan Hodge on fiddle, Billy Jickell on Mandolin, and Mike Gray on guitar and background vocals.  They love performing and their passion and love of music shines through all that they do! 

Mel and Vinnie

Mel and Vinnie are singer songwriters who tell stories about the world they see around them. They blend blues, traditional, Tin Pan Alley, pop and Americana finding ballads that touch your soul and make you want sing along. Mel’s clear ringing voice brings lyrics to life while Vinnie’s guitar weaves melodies to frame an experience that stays with you.

Their songbag includes originals, audience favorites, traditional, topical and old timey with songs for all ages. Mel and Vinnie bring songs to festivals, listening rooms, living rooms, taverns, clubs, civic events the street dedicating their lives to leaving this world a little better than they found it.

They are joined by Melissa Ortquist this year. She grew up singing in church and with Pete Seeger for Peace and Justice.


"Hard driving original melodies and willful passion rolling right off the stage!"
Mike Mac is a singer/songwriter recording and performing his way across the great and beloved State of Florida. He is a resident of Martin County for over forty years and now attending Indian River State for a Bachelors Degree in 3D modeling and animation.

Mike Quick

 Fearless singing, head-on with today's headlines, with meaningful lyrics about life, art, religion,love & positive change for humanity.  A powerful, soulful performer with a rich knowledge of blues & folk guitar playing that is always inventive. 

This music is my art and every song written is the next step I take forward.

I want to sing for YOU

The innovator, the risk taker, the earth shaker, the outsider, the outcast, the freak, the chic, the meek, the odd ball, the queer, the pioneer, the lovers, the huggers, the thinkers, the makers, the kind, the open minded, the passionate, the imperfect gentleman, the strong woman, the dancer, the listener, the aware, the woke, the activist, the artist, the poet, the dreamer, and all the people who are not afraid of growth in social issues so that everyone can be truly free to love and live their life.  I never want to go backwards. I’m ready for life on Mars and peace on earth.

Mike Worrall Band

Mike Worrall writes songs. It’s something he has little control over… kind of like breathing. The songs spill out and he writes ‘em down…an amalgam of folk and country and blues influences in songs that range from poignant to darkly humorous.

From coffee houses to concert stages, from swanky hotels to honkytonks, from large festivals to campfire song circles, Mike Worrall has become a fixture in the Florida Folk scene after spending years on the road. He’d have it no other way…a million miles, thousands of gigs, and hundreds of towns… picking, singing, laughing & living.

His latest CD, “Journey’s End”, is available on Apple Music, Bandcamp, and Spotify.


Otemeal stands for Old Time Ensemble

Coming together as musicians of many different backgrounds, our group unites as friends wanting to play and perform old time music with one another. Music has been an important part of our lives - many of us are pursuing degrees involved with music - and we wish to impart the passions we have for music on others every time we play and perform.


Passerine was founded in 2009 by Carmela Pedicini and David Brain, joined by Sara Stovall and Doug Conroy.  They have been touring nationally (and internationally) since 2012 when they released their first CD.  Their music has been described by Sara as “Ameri-kinda-grass.”  Combining their diverse musical backgrounds and interests in exploring American “roots” music, Passerine occupies a zone somewhere between modern folk, progressive bluegrass, and what is loosely called “Americana.”  Recently they have been in the studio completing their 4th full length CD, some of which you’ll hear today.  Passerine is the common name for the order of birds that includes not only songbirds known for the sweetness of their songs but the raven, a bird known in myth as the companion of deities, as a courier who inspires laughter and reveals truth, and as a trickster whose appetite for life brings wisdom, healing and great acts of creativity.


Patchwork is a 5-piece bluegrass and folk band.  Members are Janet Rucker (banjo, guitar and vocals); Cathy Dewitt (guitar and vocals); Annie MacPherson (Bass and vocals); Jolene Jones (mandolin and vocals) and David Cook (Guitar, dobro, mandolin). The band features gorgeous harmonies, as well as foot stomping instrumentals. Get ready for a good time!

Paul Smithson

Paul was born in New York City, grew up in Buffalo until he was 14, and then relocated to Eustis, Florida.  He has spent most of his life in Eustis, aside from 10 years in California.  In addition to writing songs from personal experiences and observations, Paul devotes a lot of energy to writing about Florida history.  After favorable responses to both The Devil In the Grove and Last Train, Paul is currently writing and recording for two other projects: one a collection of songs from his personal experiences titled Back Before Me And You and another collection of tunes grounded in Florida history titled Matecumbe Key.

Peg and Em

Peggy and Emery Williams are a singer-songwriting duo from North Port, Florida. Their music presents a way of telling stories. Sometimes humorous, like the quirky “Punked” and “Serious Song Without Words” to the creepy “Innocent In Dreams” and the beautiful “Love Song Of Wind And Water”, they are always thought provoking. Peggy has compiled her lyrics in a book called “Song Painter” and written another book of poetry and short stories based on her genealogy called “An American Family History”.g Painter” and written another book of poetry and short stories based on her genealogy called “An American Family History”.

Peters Road Swamp Blues Band

The Peters Road Swamp Blues Band has performed at the Will McLean Festival for more than 25 years performing songs by the late Boomslang Swampsinger and others.  The members of the band are Mark “Crocodile” Harris on bass, guitar and vocals, Dawn “DeOtter” DeWitt on Guitar Bass and Vocals, Jake “Armadillo” Vanderplate on Mandolin and percussion, Stan “The Panther” Geberer on Blues Harp and James “Jams” Barton on Keyboards.  Featuring songs about Florida and its history together with the Everglades and its inhabitants, Peter’s Road finds unique ways to present its songs and stories.  It’s “Swamp Operas” The Sawgrass City Journal and The Everglades Campfire Radio Show have been featured on the Amphitheater Stage at the Florida Folk Festival and excerpts from their newest Swamp Opera The Steamboat Everglades Moon have been performed both here at Will McLean and at other festivals throughout Florida.  Sit back and relax and take a journey through some of the more interesting parts of our fair state.  Enjoy the Ride!

Quincy Allen Flint

Gainesville based independent musician Quincy Allen Flint brings a spellbinding intimacy to his storytelling delivered with gentle Piedmont finger-picking arrangements in a style reminiscent of Townes Van Zandt. Quincy has shared the stage with Nicholas Edward Williams, Joe Crookston, Jack Williams, Quartermoon, and has performed at festivals across the state including The Florida Folk Festival, Heartwood Music Festival, and Barberville Folk Festival. He was nominated for the Songwriter Of The Year in 2021 by The Songwriters Showcase of America and will be releasing his debut album "Til Nowhere Calls" on Painted Lady Records in early 2023.

Rachel Grubb

Rachel is a seventh generation Floridian raised in rural north central Florida. She grew up singing backseat harmony to songs from the Baptist Hymnal and The Mamas and the Papas. Fascinated by lyric and melody from an early age, it wasn’t until she had a career and family that she found the courage to give songwriting an earnest try. Rachel has performed at top festivals in Florida such as Florida Folk Festival, Gamble Rogers Music Festival and Will McLean Music Festival. She was a top 10 finalist in the Will McLean Best New Florida Song Contest in 2016 and 2017 and a featured performer at the Lake County Folk Festival in 2017. Rachel is also a member of the all-female Americana trio, The Krickets. Rachel released her debut album, “Twists + Tangles,” in August, 2016. Her second album, “Florida Home,” a collection of songs about rural Florida, will be released January, 2023.

Reckless Saints

Roy Schneider and Kim Mayfield are the core duo of Reckless Saints, an original Americana band based in South Florida. They have described their music genre as 'Blue Twangled Folk 'n' Roll,' and are making that as the title for their debut release as Reckless Saints. Prior to covid the duo toured for over a decade as Roy Schneider & Kim Mayfield, releasing 5 albums of original music.
Roy's songs have thrice made him a Kerrville NewFolk finalist, providing opportunities to to musically connect with dozens of artists. He enjoys being a supporting player and has accompanied, among others, Tom Paxton on his last solo tour in FL. Kim has come from being an accompanist to contributing five songs on the upcoming Reckless Saints album, which they expect to release in April 2023

Richard D. Lewis

Richard D. Lewis is an artistic late bloomer whose music emerges out of the Folk/Americana tradition. His original songs contain a sharp political edge reflective of his past involvement in the protest movements of the 1960's and related struggles continuing into subsequent decades. These life changing experiences set a solid foundation for his current dedication to issues of human rights and social justice, including abuse suffered by psychiatric victim/survivors. 

Richard once wrote and performed a few "protest songs" in the early 1970's, but left his guitar and songwriting idle for multiple decades. However, semi-retirement in 2015 led to a renewed inspiration and a total re-immersion back into fresh contemporary musical endeavors.

Richard follows a mantra of "Making Music to Change the World," but insists that those efforts must avoid an "agit-prop," or politically stilted style of writing and performing. He believes that the very best artistic creations are those that are truly "higher than life," and nurture the very best inclinations of the poetic and compassionate human spirit. His music has also been influenced and shaped by 25 years of counseling experiences in the south coast of Massachusetts, helping people whose lives have suffered from the violence of poverty and other various forms of trauma and drug addiction.

Roadside Revue

The ROADSIDE REVUE is a Florida based, acoustic group whose original and unique cover material collectively showcases the background of it's members.

The Roadside Revue is a high-energy band of friends. The members are a collection of talented musicians and award-winning songwriters who have been playing together for almost 20 years.

They have played nearly every major Folk festival in Florida, as well as countless concerts and venues across the state.

Serious to silly, historic to hysterical, their music is presented with influences of Florida folk music, bluegrass, blues, rock, country, and gospel.

The ROADSIDE REVUE is not afraid to have a good time on stage, and the interaction with the audience is usually quick and complete.
Ron and Bari

Ron and Bari have rediscovered the spark that long ago inspired them to take this musical adventure together.  With renewed enthusiasm, brand new songs, multiple instruments, and skills honed by decades of stage time, they have returned as a duo to present clean, tightly performed arrangements of their favorite originals and carefully chosen covers.  Say Ron and Bari, "Sometimes you have to find your roots, stick 'em back in the water, and see what grows.”

 In addition to performing as a duo, Ron and Bari continue to provide backing and support instrumentation and vocals for multiple artists, groups and ensembles.  It was their honor to serve as primary members of the Frank and Ann Thomas “House and Festival Band” for over two decades. 
Rosewood Children's Choir

The Rosewood Youth Family Choir is comprised of direct descendants of those families that lived in and were gravely affected by the Rosewood Massacre of 1923. A pastime of the people of Rosewood involved singing...singing to sooth, heal, revive and rejoice! This choir is a direct linkage of continuing that same tradition! We celebrate and teach the next generation to keep that same historical pride. The Real Rosewood Foundation

Rural Route 2

This trio of Florida natives takes listeners on a musical journey through the history and heritage of their beloved Florida Panhandle.

Three generations of Floridians make up Rural Route 2.

Joan Alderman is the matriarch of the group, bringing the Florida of yesteryear to life through the tales of her youth, painting a tapestry with colorful characters, mysterious Skunk Men, wandering ghosts, and hog-hunting mules. At age 10, Joan learned to play harmonica, sitting across from her grandmother in a pea-pickin' chair by the fireplace. She is a Florida Old Time Harmonica Champion and plays a bit of guitar and banjo as well.

Joan's daughter-in-law, Amy Alderman, makes up the second generation in this song & story team. Inspired by Joan’s tales and a love for history, Amy’s songs paint musical portraits of the people – real and legendary, past and present – that populate the Florida Panhandle.

Amy’s daughter, Kathrine Alderman, brings the rounds out the trio of musical storytellers. With her rich, expressive voice and steady guitar, Kathrine shares her love for the history, heritage, and music of her home state.

Often funny – occasionally unexpected – always entertaining, these colorful ladies proudly show off their Florida Panhandle roots with their collection of tales and tunes.

Sarah McCulloch

Sarah McCulloch is a Country/Americana Singer-Songwriter whose sweet, yet sultry, voice pierces right through the lush traditional country production on her latest album, “Sawmiller’s Daughter.” The songwriter’s emotive and nostalgic lyrics showcase her knack for timeless storytelling that transports the listener right into the center of the narrative. Sarah’s finely crafted songs are steeped in country tradition and boast the kind of sentimental storytelling and tender vocal stylings that get under your skin. 

Born in Miami, Sarah was raised in the Big Cypress Swamp in a house her family built with hand milled cypress from her Father's sawmill. Sarah was homeschooled for most of her formative years and drew songwriting inspiration from her colorful childhood, surrounded by Seminole Indians and Florida pioneers. “My father was a force of nature, he was a pioneer who was always growing spiritually,” says McCulloch. “He taught me the meaning of hard work and perseverance.” The title track of the album pays homage to that sentiment as well as McCulloch’s unique upbringing and country roots.

From listening rooms and theatres to gin-joints and festivals, McCulloch is enthralling audiences far and wide with her personable musical mosaic and unforgettable voice married with meaningful songs. In the Fall of 2021, McCulloch signed with Lady Savage MGMT & PR. "Sawmiller's Daughter" was released on Earth Day, April 22nd, with accompanying visual content. Visit www.sarahmacmusic.com for all of the latest updates and info about upcoming releases!

Saylor Dollar Duo

Lisa (vocals/fiddle) and Dale Dollar (guitar) are life-long musicians from Tallahassee, Florida.  They are inspired by a broad spectrum of tunings and musical influences.  Their style may be best characterized as Americana.  They write and perform original music which has been described as “hauntingly beautiful” and “profoundly lovely”.  Matt Chase of Song Might:  “Their songs are impressive and feature powerful vocals, top notch musicianship and professional production. With so much of today's music being created by computers, it's so refreshing to hear songs written and performed by people with true talent. Saylor Dollar are true artists in every sense of the word.” Indie Strong:  Saylor Dollar has the musical ability and the great writing to back it up and make the music stand the test of time.”

Shana Smith

Shana Smith made a national name for herself as “Shana Banana,” the award-winning children’s original music “edu-tainer.”  Over the years, she has also earned a reputation as a world-class singer/songwriter, with a voice that delves into blues, jazz, folk, and spiritual music as well.  Performing at major festivals, schools, libraries, and performing arts centers across the United States, Shana has earned many prestigious awards along the way, including: two first-round Grammy nominations, Parents’ Choice, NAPPA, Kids’ First Coalition for Quality Children’s Media, and, in 2004, she won “Best Children’s Song In the Country” by the Just Plain Folks organization. Her music has taken her to the White House, Seattle’s Whirligig, the Florida Folk Festival, Merlefest, Seminole Tribe Indian Reservations, the Bluebird in Nashville, and various jazz, Americana and blues events across the country, as well as to yoga studios, spiritual centers and festivals for her “Chanting to the Open Heart” kirtan circles for adults and children. 

She especially loves to use music to celebrate our natural love of Life, Earth and the deep connections we have to each other.. Her decades-long mindfulness and yoga practices infuse her shows with love, humor, and kindness.

Slow Child @ Play

Connor is a regular performer at Will Fest, having attended since he was 10 years old, performing with his older brother Forrest in their duo band the Debbies, formerly known as NPR, and more recently with the Gentleman, accompanying his duo partner Talon Hackbarth of the family band BUS 86. Connor has been a percussionist since he was 7 years old, acquiring his first Cajon at Will Fest. Now, many years later, he has become a 3rd generation singer songwriter and guitar player. Performing songs he has written for a solo project with albums released under the name, Slow Child @ Play.

St. Pete Shanties

We are a combination of sailors and sea loving land lubbers who have great affection for our history and folklore of the sea.

We have gone to great lengths to find music that was created and sung as work songs of the early maritime era.

 St. Pete Shanties sing the songs that sailors, fishermen, and dockworkers sang, primarily during the Age of Sail when billowing sails carried people and cargo around the globe and whalers sailed the oceans in search of riches from the sea. 

With a maritime repertoire of mostly traditional songs, the Shanties are not averse to a sprinkling of more contemporary pieces.   The Shanties have a special interest in music native to their home state of Florida, which has a rich maritime history. .

Steve Compton

Steve Compton started performing at five years old at Royal Poinciana Playhouse in Palm Beach. At the age of eight he learned how to play the drums at The Salvation Army. He then joined a small band and performed at  the South Florida Fair’s very first Battle of the Bands at age ten. He continued into a professional career, playing the drums for the Josiah Lilly Band on a national tour in 1974 and recorded in Denver Record Plant. He came back from Colorado and joined Sonny Bailey and The Country Revolution. They opened up many Grand Ole Opry shows with such greats as Bobby Bare, Jack Greene and Jeannie Sealy, just to name a few.

The Ashley Gang

The Ashley Gang has been performing together since 1998 and at the Will McLean Festival for almost as long. Singing beloved Florida songs written by band members Al Scortino and Paul Garfinkel, the Gang’s harmonies, instrumental prowess, and on-stage shenanigans have made them a Florida favorite for decades. The Ashley Gang consists of: Al Scortino (guitar and dobro player, vocals, and award-winning songwriter extraordinaire from Sebastian Florida) Paul Garfinkel (guitar and saxophone player, vocals, and 5-time Will McLean song contest top ten finisher including the winning son “The Creek” in 1999) Bob Bronar (lead guitar player - one of Florida’s finest! - mandolin player and vocals) Kay Garfinkel (percussionist, flute player and harmony vocalist) Chris Campbell (Bass) 

The Back Porch Revival

Due to health issues, Jim and Melanie Robertson are unable to be at Willfest this year.

So . . .Can there really be a Back Porch Revival Band without them?

Of course not!

So for this festival, Back Porch Revisited will carry on the Robertson traditions.  Two former BPR band mates (John McClure - mandolin, Jim Rigel - bass) have teamed with friends Richard Ghent - guitar and Mary Ervin - fiddle & banjo to preserve some of the vintage toe-tappin’  music Jim and Mel gave us under the BPR banner.

Old timey sound? Yes. Folk - a little, BlueGrass - a little, Americana - a little, Upbeat & Fun - a lot!


The Debbies

The Debbies are a music duo made up of brothers, Forrest and Connor Jones, formerly known to Will Fest as NPR. Though the name has changed, the group and dynamic is the same, with heart pounding foot stomping rhythms and beautiful melodies accompanied by intricate guitar and cajon work, thoughtful lyrics and precise harmonies.

The Don Grooms Band

Born in 1930, Don Grooms grew up in Cherokee, North Carolina in a Cherokee-Appalachian family, playing a cornstalk fiddle, cigar-box banjo, and $3 guitar. At 10 Grooms played square dances and at 14 joined a pop tunes dance band. As a journalist he worked in several print newspapers, then as radio and TV reporter, covered the 1960 presidential election, worked for Lyndon Johnson in Dallas and DC, then taught journalism at UF in Gainesville, with focus on dramatic and documentary writing. 

Don wrote songs, some influenced by Will McLean with whom he shared the stage, occasionally. 

He produced folk cultural shows for WUFT-TV, programmed a UF radio singer-songwriter show, produced music albums, performed original songs, humorous and poignant, in local schools and festivals. Grooms performed at every WillFest until his death January 10, 1998, just two years after receiving the Florida Folk Heritage Award.

Some of Don’s original band members expected to perform his original music this year are Dennis Devine, Wayne Martin, Dan Peterson, Stan Geberer, Emerson Gravely, and Art Crummer.


The Florida Boys

From Chokoloskee to Tallahassee, The Florida Boys have performed throughout the peninsula of Florida. The Florida Boys perform original Florida Folk songs (I Love Florida, Blue Moon Party and more), traditional Florida Folk songs such as Will McLean’s The Wild Hog and covers of American country classics such as The Cuckoo and Gone, Gone , Gone. The Florida Boys have been performing together for over 7 years. The Florida Boys have numerous videos showcasing their material on YouTube.

The Gentleman

Talon Hackbarth and Connor Jones have been playing music together for years, and a few years ago formed The Gentleman.
With music inspiered by iconic bands like Pink Floyd and The Beatles, The Gentleman play anything from psychedelic rock
to soft acoustic ballads. We have been coming to Will Fest for years and love being a part of the wide variety of music here.

The John French Band

The John French band consists of singer-songwriter John French on guitar and vocals, Laura Greaney on bass guitar and vocals, Joe Greaney on electric guitar, and Steve Waters on electric guitar and vocals. All members live in Lake County, Florida.

The Lilly Jane Band

“Lilly Jane explores songs forgotten and harmonies remembered with an original, earthy style that is both powerful and subtle. Lilly Jane is music, pure and simple.”

The Lilly Jane band plays old-time traditional tunes, original songs and unique arrangements of contemporary Americana music. Their music features beautifully blended three- and four-part singing backed by acoustic guitar, banjo, fiddle, mandolin,  and stand-up bass.

Lilly Jane has performed at festivals and venues in Florida, including the Florida Folk Festival, Will McLean Festival, Lake County Folk Festival, Pinellas County Folk festival, Hernando County Fair, Alafia Rendezvous, Lake Alfred Heritage festival, Barberville, Listening on the Lawn at the Hillsborough River Sate Park and numerous local venues and private parties. Their first recording is entitled The Zen Sessions (Reverbnation, Amazon).

The Sticky Strings

This trio plays lively string band music on fiddle, guitar, banjo, upright bass, and anything else they can lay hands on. Some call their music oldtime, but Sticky Strings shies away from this label for the simple reason that "oldtime" implies that the music belongs in the past. Sticky Strings believes that although the songs are old, the music is timeless and just as relevant today as it has always been...Their approach to music is simple, community based, and fun. They crowd around one mic. They play their hearts out. Most importantly, they want you to sing , holler, and stomp along with them.

Tina Eno

Tina Eno doesn’t leave anything behind when she performs. She’s all in. Heartfelt lyrics combined with engaging melodies, Tina’s songs tell stories, take you to your hardest heartache and every so often make you swing side to side.

Too Many Smiths

TOO MANY SMITHS is Glenn and Linda Smith, an acoustic duo that formed after meeting each other at Willfest 14 years ago.  Mike Roberts joined the band seven years ago.  They have been performing at festivals and coffee houses all over Florida since then.  They play a wide variety of stylings ranging from Americana to blues and jazz; songs from such artists as Gillian Welch, Toni Price to local Florida songwriters like Liz Williamson, Al Scortino, Marie Nofsinger and our band mate Mike Robert’s original songs. 

For TOO MANY SMITHS it is all about the songs, Linda’s arresting vocals,  Mike’s warm folksy vocals and Glenn’s unique guitar along with Linda's beautiful sultry voice give a fresh unique interpretation to the songs they perform.