The debut of the Under the Big Sky music festival last summer drew more than 30,000 fans to a picturesque working ranch near Whitefish.
The artist lineup was a mix of legends like Dwight Yoakam and breakout artists like Band of Horses and Nathaniel Rateliff, with lots of Montana bands over two days on two stages, and a rodeo.
This summer, the lineup is equally mixed with Grammy-winning headliners Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit and Emmylou Harris, along with up-and-coming alt-country star Tyler Childers. Also on the bill are Head And The Heart, Brothers Osborne, Colter Wall, Shovels & Rope, Lukas Nelson & Promise Of The Real, Billy Strings, Jade Bird and others.
New for this year will be a camping option within two miles of the property with shuttle service running to and from the festival site. A bike valet will also be available on-site.
Under The Big Sky is held on Big Mountain Ranch, a 350-acre working farm a mile east of the city limits of Whitefish. Whitefish’s local music venues will again host intimate post-fest events with artists playing the festival.
Accompanying the musical programming and giving visitors an authentic Montana experience, will be a rough stock rodeo produced by Brash Rodeo, as well as trail riding opportunities in and around the ranch.
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Alabama native Jason Isbell leads the line-up, sharing the uniquely honest and personal songs that have seen him win four Grammys. He’s joined by Emmylou Harris with Grammy wins in each of the last five decades.
The Seattle band Head And The Heart has pushed beyond the constraints of genre to emerge as one of the most unique American voices in modern pop, festival organizers said in a press release. They are a unique contrast to Brothers Osborn, a rising force in country music, whose potent no-bull mixture of rambunctious Southern rock and traditional balladry has seen them become critic’s darlings and fan favorites, organizers said.
Canada will be represented by several acts on the line-up including Colter Wall, a husky, baritone whose country-western music from the prairies of Saskatchewan encompass traditional folk and country. Lukas Nelson will bring his Californian country rock, following his successful turn co-writing and producing much of the Oscar-winning soundtrack for “A Star Is Born.”
Under the Big Sky will also continue its commitment to championing local music talent. Montana’s Lil Smokies, and Swagar & Co., return along with Alberta’s Corb Lund, stompgrass favorites Laney Lou & The Bird Dogs, Whitefish’s Snowghost, local funk band 20 Grand, singer songwriter Nick Spear and rock band Badger Hound round out the Montana artists on the bill.
Under The Big Sky is an all-ages event, with free entry for children under six. Food and beverage will be a curated collaboration between notable Whitefish restaurateur Pat Carlossand Best Beverage Catering, who provide catering for Coachella, Stagecoach, BottleRock and many other major festivals. VIP experiences and seating will be offered.