Wander the grounds of this year’s Apple Harvest Festival, which takes place at Riverfront Park in Glastonbury from Oct. 12 to 14, and you’ll likely hear some of the best folk-rock, country, bluegrass, Americana and power-pop being made anywhere in New England.
"It's always extremely difficult to finalize this lineup because there are just so many talented acts across our state, and now we've got dozens of touring bands asking to play as well," says music organizer Chip McCabe. "But it's a great problem to have."
Goodnight Blue Moon, Brian Dolzani, Laini and the Wildfire, the Meadows Brothers, the Girls From Ruby Falls, Among the Acres and more than a dozen other Connecticut acts join Texas singer-songwriter Nichole Wagner, Philly’s River Bonds Band and the excellent Wolff Sisters (from Boston), performing on three separate stages, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
There’s also a beer and wine garden, food, rides, fireworks, vendors and other fun stuff. Check out the full entertainment schedule on Facebook.
Here’s a small sampling of what to expect. (You’ll have to do some floating around to hit everything you want.)
Auguste and Alden
Oct. 12, 7:45 p.m., Welcome Stage
The country-rock tinged “Sunshine of Mine,” by sister-and-brother act Auguste (bass/vocals) and Alden (guitar/vocals), has it all: brother Alden’s gravely tenor, sister Auguste’s seamless vocal harmonies, solid drumming by Sean Lemkey (who also sings and plays guitar in Among the Acres) and the feel of a band that’s just starting to find its footing.
Shellye Valauskas Experience
Oct. 12, 8:30 p.m., Harvest Pub Stage
Singer-songwriter Shellye Valuskas and guitarist Dean Falcone, who recently released the power-pop album “History of Panic,” began playing together nearly two decades ago. It shows; ask Jon Auer (The Posies, Big Star), who appears on “Panic,” and who also asked the duo to back him on recent live dates.
The Girls From Ruby Falls
Oct. 13, 3 p.m., Village Stage
Each half of CT country/Americana supergroup The Girls From Ruby Falls — fictional sisters Iris (Heather Fay) and Laurel (Sarah LeMieux) Caulthorn — is an award-winning musician in her own right; as a collective, this is next-level stuff.
Oct. 13, 4 p.m., Village Stage
Veteran singer-songwriter Brian Dolzani’s new album, “Horse,” is one of the best original Americana albums you’ll hear this year, and the laid-back, nostalgic “50 Miles From Memphis” is a standout.
Goodnight Blue Moon
Oct. 13, 4:30 p.m., Welcome Stage
Another CT Americana band with a stellar new album (“Dawning Dream”), the sprawling New Haven collective is always electrifying.
River Bones Band
Oct. 13, 6:45 p.m., Harvest Pub Stage
“Billy in the High Ground,” the debut EP (released in March) by Philadelphia bluegrass band River Bones Band, weaves fiddles, guitars, mandolins, banjos and washboards around the quintet’s seamless, ale-soaked vocal harmonies. Not to be missed.
Oct. 13, 7:30 p.m., Welcome Stage
The Wolff Sisters
Oct. 13, 8:15 p.m., Harvest Pub Stage
The Wolff Sisters — Rebecca (vocals/acoustic guitar), Rachael (vocals/electric guitar) and Kat (vocals/keyboards) — recorded “Cahoon Hollow,” the group’s second album, at Eric Michael Lichter’s Dirt Floor Studios (in Chester, Conn.) and the clip below at Hartford’s own Parkville Studios. I’m glad they like it here.
Among the Acres
Oct. 14, 3:30 p.m., Welcome Stage
Auguste and Alden drummer Sean Lemkey fronts this talented, acoustic-leaning quartet, which also features multi-instrumentalist Michael Day (formerly of Little Ugly), bassist Greg Ganci and percussionist Erik Linblad; “House of Pain” (listen below) falls somewhere between Lauren Canyon folk-rock and a bluegrass parking-lot jam session.