Author Archives: Tim McCaffrey


Friday one-day tickets are nearly sold out. But don’t fret, we still have some left. Also available are Thursday and Sunday one-day tickets, along with multiple camping options. Secure your spot now before they’re gone! 🎸🏕️

Wednesday, May 17th, is the last day to purchase tickets to be mailed directly to you. If you miss the deadline, tickets can still be purchased afterward. Will-Call will be available at the Festival Box Office 24/7, starting at 4pm on Wednesday, May 24th. Don’t forget to bring your photo ID!



“Della Mae is a woman who pops up in a lot of bluegrass songs and who’s a victim of physical abuse—she done her man wrong, and now he’s gonna get her,” founder and fiddler Kimber Ludiker explains. “From the beginning, this band has been about reclaiming her story and changing the conversation for women, especially those whose stories haven’t been told.” 

This band enlists their well-honed musical craft to not only entertain countless audiences with world-class string artistry, but to create social change. Ambassadors of acoustic music and opportunities for women, Della Mae has teamed up with the U.S. State Department to visit over 30 countries to spread their art and message. 

Accomplished, impassioned, polished players make up this fine group that does outstanding work both on and off stage. What better way to carry inspiration into your summer and beyond? We are thrilled to welcome Della Mae as our Sunday evening closers at Strawberry!


Yonder Mountain String Band celebrates their quarter century mark with a Grammy nomination for their 2022 release, Get Yourself Outside, an induction into the Colorado Music Hall of Fame, and of course, a performance at Strawberry Music Festival!

These jamgrass trailblazers have helped to cultivate a spirit of collaborative improvisation that continues to fuel today’s progressive bluegrass bands, and have proved time and time again that it’s possible for a bluegrass group to not only exist, but excel in rock music scenes. 

The acoustic inferno that continues to fill venues like Red Rocks Amphitheatre and Bonnaroo began with initial sparks from groups like Yonder Mountain String Band, and the festival is super fired up to present them Saturday evening. See you soon, Strawberry!


The North Mississippi Allstars, started by brothers Luther and Cody Dickinson (sons of legendary producer/musician Jim Dickinson), blend hill country blues, rock, funk and psychedelia to produce a distinctly southern sound that is “playful and joyful, high-flying but grounded in a groove,” AP News. 


“There’s a certain maverick rebelliousness to the Allstars, a kind of William Faulkner feeling of living close to the edge,” – Blues Blast Magazine. 

Their chemistry on stage is powerful, flexing generations of musical know-how, experience, ease and passion. “It takes hard work to sound this relaxed,” (AP News), and still make it a stompin, rockin, swamp rompin good time.

We’re ready to feel the feels – bring on Friday evening’s headliner, North Mississippi Allstars!

Saturday Day Tickets Are Running Out!

We hope you are as excited as we are that the festival gates open in just 14 days! We want to inform you that the Strawberry Music Festival one-day passes have been a huge success this year, and we’re grateful for the overwhelming response from everyone. As a result, we are now running low on Saturday single-day tickets, with only a limited amount of tickets remaining and will sell out soon.

If you were hoping to attend the festival on Saturday, we recommend that you purchase your tickets as soon as possible at

There are still plenty of camping tickets available and 1-day tickets for the other days of the festival, but only limited tickets for each day. Don’t miss out on the music, fun, and excitement!

Thank you for your continued support. We look forward to seeing you this year!

Best regards,

The Strawberry Music Festival Team


The five lucky winners of Strawberry’s Spring 2023 Street Team Contest are Scott Levosky (email), Michelle Kronholm (Instagram), Darla Russo (email), Deborah Payne (Instagram), and Pam Dart (email). Winners will be contacted directly to provide contact information for ticketing. We are looking forward to seeing you there in just a couple of weeks. Congratulations to the winners and thank you to everyone who posted flyers!

Darla Russo
Deborah Payne
Michelle Kronholm
Pam Dart
Scott Levosky


Some of bassist Sam Grisman’s earliest and fondest musical memories come from his childhood home, where timeless music was made by his Dad, David Grisman, and Jerry Garcia. 

Sam writes, “My goal in starting Sam Grisman Project is to build a platform for my friends and me to showcase our genuine passion and appreciation for the legacy of Dawg and Jerry’s music.”

The project’s “core four,” Sam, Ric Robertson, Aaron Lipp and Chris J. English, cover that famous repertoire as well as originals that exhibit the Dawg-Jerry influence on their own, individual sounds. 

“Ultimately, there is nothing that makes me happier than playing great songs with my best friends and my hope is to share that happiness with audiences all over!” 

We’re with you, Sam, and looking forward to feeling the love on Saturday evening, at Strawberry! 


This is your chance to win tickets while spreading the Strawberry vibe! To enter, all you have to do is print and post this year’s flyer to your favorite public bulletin board and send us a selfie with each posted flyer. The more flyers you post, and selfies you send, the better your chances are to win. Five lucky winners will be drawn to win one pair of 5-Night Adult camping tickets each, on Tuesday, May 9th.


• Print Strawberry’s Spring 2023 Flyer in full COLOR and measuring at least 8 ½” x 11.”

• Flyers must be posted in a public place and with permission by owner.

• Send us a selfie (or a photograph of you) with each flyer posted, as directed below.

• Each qualifying photo submitted from a different location counts as one entry.

• Your photos can be submitted via email or Instagram. Please pick one platform and do not duplicate submissions.

• By entering this contest, you are giving permission for your photo submission to be posted publicly on Strawberry’s social media platforms.

• Be sure that flyers are taken down and disposed of properly after the festival.


  • Via email, send your photo to
  • On Instagram, tag us by including @strawberry_music_festival, as well as the hashtag #strawberrystreetteam23 in the text of your post.

If you have questions, please call us at (209) 984-8630 or email Thank you for helping us to spread the word about Strawberry, good luck, and we hope to see you there!


Composed of singer/multi-instrumentalists Dan Wheetman, Jon Wilcox, Mike Phelan, Ed Littlefield Jr., Jerry Fletcher, and Bob Nichols, this band can sing and play anything with spot-on feel, from roots to rock, blues to bluegrass, and gospel to stone country.

“Remarkable, distinctive voices, giddily eccentric eclecticism, a heady subversive treat.” – No Depression

“The vocals will blow you away with their purity. The group sings with the heartfelt conviction that only those who embody music’s spirituality can convey.” – Relix

Giddy, eccentric, eclectic, subversive, and musically spiritual – hallelujah!! We cannot get enough of these Strawberry veterans, and are thrilled to welcome them again this year. 

Learn more here:

Crew Member Spotlight – Mary Free

Mary Free has never attended a Strawberry without being on the Musician Liasion Crew, and that’s a lot of Strawberries.

35 years ago, while she was working at a pet clinic in Santa Barbara, a representative of the software company came in from out of town to help set up the new system. Mary saved her some money by offering her a place to sleep, and in return, the woman invited Mary to a festival she was part of. “Come hang out,” she said, “you won’t have to do anything!” Intrigued, Mary came to her first Strawberry, and in her words, “I’d never worked so hard in my life!”

Her first job was as a runner (among other things), who goes to the gate to pick up musicians when they arrive, and takes them to the stage. Mary was hooked, and came back year after year. Then when the crew leader retired, Mary was asked to step in. 

“Our main directive is to serve the musicians in such a way that they can relax and enjoy their time with us,” Mary says, speaking of her crew. She points out that some festivals don’t do much to welcome musicians, they’re just told “when to show up,” and that’s it. At Strawberry, however, this crew’s mission is to anticipate the needs of the bands and make them feel welcome as if they are guests in our home.

Most of the crew has been together for most of Mary’s tenure and because of this continuity, many of the repeat performers arrive at the festival with a sense of coming home. Some of the new acts come in with an attitude, which the crew endeavors to change with kindness, competence and attention.  There are many stories, some funny, some harrowing.

Mary recalls a time when a large group came to perform, and the liaisons were caring for the bus driver, backstage. “He was fed and watered,” she said, but “a little off.” They weren’t sure how to read it. But as a staff member was leading the bus slowly out of camp through the dispersing crowd,  his calm but clear voice came over the radio, “I need Medical, and Security to my location, now.” As he was walking backwards in front of the bus, he witnessed the driver having a seizure at the wheel. A scary situation, but handled quickly and safely. Crew members were relieved that it happened while creeping slowly along, well supervised at Strawberry, instead of barreling down the mountain on the highway.

That story reminds us how Strawberry is like a village for a weekend, with a vast range of occurrences. Not only does amazing music and inspiration happen, but medical emergencies arise, ideas are hatched, and people fall in love. Mary met her Sweetheart at Strawberry.

In her “other” life, Mary has a degree in accounting which keeps her busy, and she has two Strawberry-raised, adult children. She lives in Cazadero in “a little mountain-top cabin that’s getting bigger,” – another project that occupies her time.

“At one point, I was thinking about quitting Strawberry,” Mary muses. She’d realized that it was the only place she really felt like she belonged, and had a really strong connection. She thought maybe she needed to take that energy and spread it out into her whole life, somehow. Luckily, one of the staff told her “Mary, you’ve got that backwards! You need to find a way to spend more time with Strawberry, not less!” 

Mary agreed. She soaks up as much goodness as she can each Strawberry, and carries it back down the hill, like all of us who love the Strawberry Way. She loves the festival, and loves her role in it, too. “We are creating something that makes so many people happy – how many things in your life can you say that about?”

Mary, thank YOU for making so many musicians, bus drivers, managers, volunteers and festival participants so happy.  We are grateful for you!