Time to dust off the cowboy boots — the Northwest Montana Fair starts next week, and promises to be a rootin’-tootin’ good time.
It all starts at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 16, with this year’s Grandstand concert, featuring headliner Dustin Lynch. Bailey Bryan will also perform, and the show will be opened by local singer/songwriter Jael Johnson and her band.
“I’m a little nervous, but mostly excited,” Johnson said about the upcoming performance. “I love the fair, so there’s something really special about having the chance to play there.”
Johnson will have a chance to perform on the Grandstand stage after winning the Flathead’s Got Talent competition held earlier this year. It will be her first major show with the backing of a full band.
The band includes Tim Johnson, Elijah Waldrop, Stonewall Johnson, Caleb Knox and Andrew Morton.
“The band ... I’ve played with them all individually, but never as a full group,” Johnson said. “Rehearsals have been going really well. It’s a lot of fun; there’s been a lot of laughing.”
Johnson, who grew up in Montana, has been performing regionally since she was young. She grew up singing in church, at voice recitals and for family gatherings, but her breakout public performance came at age 14 when she entered the Western Montana Texaco Country Showdown in 2011.
For the past six years, Johnson has won numerous awards for her music and vocal performances. She has toured extensively and has recorded two EPs and two singles, plus has recorded on the albums of six other artists. She released her first full-length LP in 2016, “Sistine Chapel.”
Johnson is a member of the Nashville Songwriters Association International and the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers.
For more information and to listen to or purchase music, visit https://jaeljohnsonmusic.com or https://www.facebook.com/jaeljohnsonmusic.
New country artist Bailey Bryan will perform at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, following Johnson on the Grandstand stage.
Bryan, 18, grew up playing and singing on the streets in Sequim, Washington. According to her website, “she may have country roots, [but] her music is diverse and unique with wide-spanned influences from the Dixie Chicks to Drake to Red Hot Chili Peppers.”
Bryan has opened for acts such as Macklemore and Sara Evans. Bailey signed an exclusive music publishing agreement with Kompass in 2013 and began making monthly trips to Nashville to hone her songwriting craft.
“I always jumped at the chance to sing and play my guitar in front of people, but when I started writing songs when I was 12, music became an even bigger part of my life,” Bryan said on her site’s biography. “Being able to share my heart and experiences with other people through my music became my purpose and my passion.”
Shortly after Bryan moved to Nashville, she inked a joint recording deal with Warner Music Nashville and 300 Entertainment out of New York. Her debut single, “Own It,” is available now.
For more information, visit http://www.redlightmanagement.com/artists/bailey-bryan or https://www.facebook.com/baileybryanmusic.
Dustin Lynch is a Broken Bow Records artist. The Tennessee native, according to his website, “knows how to combine his traditional influences with an edgy intensity that places him at the vanguard of today’s contemporary country scene.”
Lynch’s self-titled debut hit No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart in 2012, making him the only new male artist to achieve such a feat that year. The album’s lead single, “Cowboys and Angels,” exceeded platinum sales status, ending the year as one Billboard’s Top 5 Country Songs of 2012.
Since releasing “Cowboys and Angels,” Lynch has racked up more than 25 million views on YouTube/VEVO, soaring to No. 1 on the MTV Music Meter and selling 2.4 million digital singles. Producers Mickey Jack Cones, Brett Beavers and Luke Wooten showcase his sound throughout his sophomore album, “WHERE IT’S AT,” which debuted at No. 1 on the iTunes Country Albums Chart.
Lynch has previously opened shows for Keith Urban and Luke Bryan. After his appearance in Kalispell, his current tour will take him to Ohio, Missouri and Nebraska.
For a full list or tour dates and more information, visit https://www.dustinlynchmusic.com or https://www.facebook.com/dustinlynchmusic.
The Grandstand concert at this year’s Northwest Montana Fair begins at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 16. Gates open at 6 p.m.
The party pit is sold out, but reserved and general admission tickets are still avilable. Advanced reserve tickets are $40, general admission is $32, general admission for ages 6 to 12 is $20, and children 5 and younger get in free. Prices will go up on the day of the show.
The outdoor concert will be held rain or shine, and refunds are not available.
To purchase advance tickets or for more information on the concert and other Northwest Montana Fair activities, events and performances, visit http://nwmtfair.com.