Courtesy of Red River Chamber of Commerce

Red River Folk Festival curator Max Gomez performs. The festival returns from Sept. 23-26 this year after it was called off in 2020 due to the pandemic.

Correction appended

Red River will once again echo with the down-home sounds of folk music this Thursday through Sunday (Sept. 23-26).

The Red River Folk Festival returns for 2021 – after a break due to a global pandemic – with a stacked lineup filled with new favorites and old friends.

The festival is once again being organized and curated by Taos native singer-songwriter Max Gomez and longtime collaborator and friend, Steve Heglund, with the intention of maintaining the cozy, homelike feel that the festival has been known for since it was founded seven years ago.

“It’s been a learning process,” said Gomez of his yearly task of pulling together a list of performers.

“When we started, it was easy,” he said. “It was basically just me and five or six of my best friends getting together for a fun weekend.”

Gomez said the feel remains the same, but the festival has gotten more popular. The workload has increased.

“We have more responsibility now, because it has grown,” he said.

That means pulling together old friends (as in past years), like Mary Gauthier, and recruiting new friends.

“Take Joe [Purdy] for example. I met him a few years ago in LA,” Gomez said. “We have been friends ever since, so I have brought him in for the festival the last couple of years.”

Mostly, Gomez said he just picks people he admires and trusts that the show will be amazing. He hasn’t been wrong yet.

In addition to Gomez and Purdy, this year's lineup includes Michael Martin Murphey, Mary Gauthier, Junior Brown, Rosie Flores, Joe Purdy, Jed Zimmerman, Bob Livingston, Leslie Stevens, Bill Hearne, Esther Rose, Thom Chacon, Jaimee Harris, Chris Arellano and Jack Barksdale.

The festival will be held in Brandenburg Park, Bitter Creek Ranch and Motherlode Saloon. Will call for ticket holders opens at noon in the front of the Motherlode and activities in Brandenburg Park start Friday (Sept. 25) at 9 a.m.

More information and tickets are available at redriverfolk.com.

The print version of this story, found in the Sept. 23 edition of the Taos News, listed a previous musical lineup. We regret the error.

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