Foo Fighters, +LIVE+, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Jenny Lewis, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real and Wynonna & The Big Noise Among Day 2 Performances at Pilgrimage
Four Franklin Non-Profits -- Graceworks, Brightstone, High Hopes Development and Mercy Community Healthcare -- Join Longstanding Charitable Partners -- MusiCares, Friends of Franklin Parks, Dark Horse Institute and Heritage Foundation of Williamson County -- as Festival Beneficiaries in 2019
The Foo Fighters closed out 2019’s Pilgrimage Music and Cultural Festival with a bang Sunday night. Frontman Dave Grohl declared at the top of their set, “I came here to play rock and roll music,” and they delivered on that promise as they ripped through 25 years of hits such as “The Pretender,” “Learn to Fly” and “My Hero.” The audience was headbanging, pumping their fists in the air and singing along with every word during the Foo Fighters’ headlining set, which also included a cover of Queen and Davie Bowie’s “Under Pressure.”
Earlier in the day, Denver-based Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats had the audience dancing with their joyous, barn-burning performance. +LIVE+ kept the energy at a fever pitch as they performed in celebration of the 25th anniversary of their multi-Platinum album, Throwing Copper. They also added a cover R.E.M.’s “Losing My Religion” in between their classic hits, “Selling the Drama” and “Lakini’s Juice.”
Wynonna & The Big Noise debuted some new tunes from their upcoming studio album, including the new single, “The Child,” and a cover of the Grateful Dead’s “Ramble on Rose.” Updated, bluesy versions of Wynonna’s solo hits “Rock Bottom” and “What the World Needs Now” highlighted the set along with a few hits from days in the GRAMMY-winning duo, The Judds. Naomi Judd watched Wynonna’s show from the side of the stage as she sang “Why Not Me” and “I Know Where I’m Going.”
Festival co-founder Kevin Griffin took the stage with his band Better Than Ezra Sunday afternoon. In addition to performing their hits, including “Juicy,” “Good” and “King of New Orleans,” Griffin played a custom Epiphone guitar embossed with the Pilgrimage logo during part of his set before giving it away to an audience member. He also took some time out to thank all the people who worked so hard to make the event happen.
He then told the crowd, “Thank you so much for sticking with us and believing in the festival.”
Wearing pink, rhinestone sunglasses and a full-length sequin gown, Jenny Lewis brought a bit of old-school glamour to the festival. Her set was heavy with tracks from her new album, On the Line, including one she wrote in Nashville called “Do-Si-Do.” Lewis also worked in a reggae remix of her 2014 track, “The Voyager.”
Rising country star Filmore gave a surprise pop-up performance featuring his latest single, “Slower,” as well as a cover of fellow Pilgrimage performer Keith Urban’s “Somebody Like You.”
Adia Victoria performed a set of haunted blues from her current album, Silences. Point of Grace and GRAMMY winner Ashley Cleveland kicked the day off singing at Pilgrimage’s first-ever Sunday Service. Kathie Lee Gifford, who recently moved to Middle Tennessee, also shared a message of faith.
Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, Shooter Jennings, Preservation Hall Jazz Band and Molly Tuttle were among the other performers Sunday.
Pilgrimage partnered once again with Sixthman to capture intimate live performances backstage in their vintage camper, including the winner of the Play at Pilgrimage contest Bre Kennedy and her song “Jealous of Birds.” Lightning 100 and Miller Lite partnered to give one Nashville act a performance slot on The ASCAP Shady Grove Stage and a $5,000 cash prize in the form of a trust from J. W. Couch Foundation, to be used to advance the band’s musical aspirations.
While the sun-drenched audience basked in the fields in Franklin taking in the second and final day of the festival, their presence also supported an ongoing community initiative central to the festival’s mission: giving back to the community that supports the festival.
The Pilgrimage Foundation, the non-profit entity of the Pilgrimage Music and Cultural Festival. Through this foundation funds are raised from donors, ticket sales and other activities which benefits the parks, Harlinsdale Farm, education, musicians and artists. The Pilgrimage Foundation is the festival's means to giving back to the community and causes that are aligned with the festival's values of having a positive impact beyond the festival experience.
This year, Pilgrimage added festival presence for four area non-profits -- Graceworks, Brightstone, High Hopes Development and Mercy Community Healthcare – joining previous years’ on-going charitable partners: MusiCares, Friends of Franklin Parks, Dark Horse Institute and Heritage Foundation of Williamson County -- as festival beneficiaries in 2019.
“What an incredible weekend,” shares co-founder Brandt Wood. “We’re overjoyed at the community’s support for Pilgrimage and are humbled by the enthusiasm shown by our vendors, sponsors, partners, industry friends and the artist community.” Co-founder Michael Whelan adds, “Thank you for believing in this event and for making the pilgrimage with us!”