If you’re reading this, there is a good chance that you have never heard of Big Ears Festival before now. The festival takes place in downtown Knoxville, TN and has been in hibernation since March of 2010. That was until today when the festival’s twitter account had this to say:
The festival is produced by AC Entertainment, the same people behind Bonnaroo, Forecastle, and Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit. President of AC Entertainment, Ashley Capps, has hinted in the past that Big Ears could make a return. It also just so happens that AC Entertainment’s home offices are located in Knoxville, TN where the festival takes place. This gives them a huge advantage when working out the festival logistics, venues, and getting sponsors for the festival.
So you’re now likely wondering, what KIND of festival is Big Ears? Well, the best way I can describe it is to imagine SXSW, but on a smaller more intimate scale. You won’t find people fighting their way into venues or major corporate sponsors on every corner or at every showcase begging for your attention. In its two years of operation, 2009-2010, Big Ears prided itself with offering unique musical performances that pushed boundaries. The two major venues in downtown Knoxville include The Tennessee Theatre and Bijou Theatre, both of which offer a beautiful atmosphere.
The festival does not completely absorb itself in music, but also offers many arts including film, culture, education, and interaction. To quote the festival themselves:
The mission of BIG EARS is to offer an exciting and dynamic platform of musical and artistic discovery by artists possessed of singular and unique visions that stand apart from the mainstream.
In 2010, Big Ears booked the following music acts:
Nosaj Thing | Sufjan Stevens | The XX | Andrew W. K. | Vampire Weekend | Dirty Projectors | Vampire Weekend | Joanna Newsom | St. Vincent | The National
In the three years since, all of these artists have gone on to be extremely successful and are now part of mainstream music all over the world.
So who can we expect to play Big Ears 2014? Good question! One things for certain, with AC Entertainment being behind it all, we can likely expect announcements sooner than later. Both Forecastle and Mountain Oasis leave no room for leaks as they typically share lineup announcements as soon as bookings are finalized. No other details regarding exacts dates for the festival have been revealed, but previous editions have always taken place in March.