With over a hundred artists on multiple stages, it’s impossible to see everyone you want at the 2015 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival. Inevitably, at some point in the weekend you will have a conflict that will force you to choose between artists. Fortunately, some of the Bonnaroo 2015 artists will be making stops in Nashville prior to the festival. Whether you want to see them to eliminate conflicts or just get a preview of what you might see at Bonnaroo, here are seven Bonnaroo 2015 artists you can catch before the festival in local venues.
Sturgill Simpson- Feb. 28 and Mar. 1 at 3rd & Lindsley
Local resident Sturgill Simpson is a hard ticket to find in Nashville. Every time he plays here the show sells out in minutes so the wide open fields of Bonnaroo may be your first chance. As is normally the case, Simpson’s two-night stand at 3rd & Lindsey with Anderson East sold out quickly, but if you’re willing to pay secondary market prices, Simpson’s show is sure to be a barn burner.
Houndmouth- Mar. 8 at 3rd & Lindsley
Folk rockers Houndmouth have been making waves since their formation in 2011. They have wowed audiences at festivals like Americanafest, Austin City Limits, and Lollapalooza and now they’re bringing their show to Bonnaroo. But before that, they’re playing 3rd & Lindsley as part of Lightning 100’s Nashville Sunday night series.
Hiss Golden Messenger- Mar. 12 at High Watt
North Carolina folk-duo Hiss Golden Messenger made significant waves in 2014, with their album “Lateness of Dancers” garnering positive reviews from the likes of Stereogum, Consequence of Sound, and Pitchfork and showing up on numerous “Best of 2014” lists. The group’s genre-bending style is a perfect fit for an eclectic festival like Bonnaroo. But if you want to catch them in a more intimate setting, the group will play Nashville’s High Watt, the smallest of the venues in the Cannery Row complex, on Mar. 12.
Hozier- Mar. 14, 16, and 17 at Ryman Auditorium
It’s virtually impossible to have turned on a radio in 2014 and not have heard Irish rocker Hozier’s “Take Me to Church” playing. Hot off the buzz from a Grammy performance with Eurythmics legend Annie Lennox, Hozier hits Nashville in March for a three day run of concerts at the historic Ryman Auditorium. Like Sturgill Simpson, this run of shows has long been sold out so if you don’t already have tickets, you may either have to wait for his Bonnaroo show or get ready to pay resale ticket markups.
Sylvan Esso- Apr. 1 at Cannery Ballroom
North Carolina based electropop act Sylvan Esso only released their debut album in May of 2014 but they’re already drawing audiences like a band with a decade of experience. Their self-titled debut album hit the Top 40 of the Billboard 200 and the group has performed on The Tonight Show. Before Bonnaroo, they will hit Nashville on April Fool’s Day for a performance at the Cannery Ballroom.
Bela Fleck & Abigail Washburn with Rhiannon Giddens- Apr. 4 at Grand Ole Opry House
You can get a two-for-one Bonnaroo artist deal on April 4 at the Grand Ole Opry House as husband and wife banjo virtuosos Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn hit town, bringing along fellow Bonnaroo 2015 performer Rhiannon Giddens as an opening act. All three artists are very familiar with Bonnaroo, each having made numerous appearances with various projects.
Bonnaroo 2015 will be held June 11-14 at Great Stage Park in Manchester, TN. In addition to the artists listed above, appearances include headliners Billy Joel, Mumford & Sons, and Deadmau5, as well as artists like My Morning Jacket, Slayer, Alabama Shakes, and Earth, Wind, & Fire. You can see the full Bonnaroo 2015 lineup here.