Prince Albert’s first couch and music festival has its first confirmed act.
On Monday, Chesterfest announced its inaugural headliner, The Dead South, a bluegrass band from Regina.
The Dead South has headlined the Ness Creek Festival and won a 2018 Juno Award for best Traditional Roots Album.
Formed in 2012, the band is popular on both sides of the Atlantic. The Dead South has amassed over 430,000 Youtube subscribers and their breakout hit, In Hell I’ll be in Good Company, has over 90 million Youtube views.
“We’re super excited,” said Chesterfest organizer Joel Rohs.
“(Fellow organizer Kayanna Wirz) and I have been big fans of the band since the start. They actually played in my brother’s condo eight years ago, in the basement, to about 30 people.”
The band has come a long way since, selling 50,000 tickets in 2018 alone.
“It’s crazy that we made it work out, but we’re excited to have them as the headliner in our first year.”
Chesterfest, which is scheduled for July 4-6, 2019, has been in the works since last summer. It includes some of Rohs’ and Wirz’s favourite things: food, free art classes, comfy couches, a foosball tournament, a community art piece and more. It’s set to take place at Par Place, located just northwest of the city on Highway 55. Auditions, fundraisers and house concerts are taking place at various venues in and around the city.
“We love live music and vintage couches. We want to combine the feeling and energy of a music festival with the comfort and intimacy of a house concert,” the duo says on their website. “Our goal is to bring some great music (big and small names alike) to Prince Albert with a unique twist on a music festival.”
So far, The Deep South is the only act that’s been announced, but Rohs said more names will be released soon.
“We still have artist applications open now for people who want to apply who can play, but we should be announcing more acts come January.”
So far, Rohs said the festival has collected 20 vintage couches. When spring rolls around and the snow melts away. The plan is to hold a couch drive to collect more.
Tickets are on sale now on the festival’s website, chesterfest.ca/tickets. You can also visit that website for more information about the festival.