With Bonnaroo behind him and Asheville’s upcoming Mountain Oasis Festival planned, it looks like Ashley Capps finally has some time to think about reviving Big Ears, the popular and critically acclaimed festival of avant-garde, experimental, and underground music that has been dormant since its second edition in 2010. The founder and president of AC Entertainment isn’t talking yet, but a recent Facebook post indicates that the festival is definitely coming back in 2014.
This post appeared on the official Big Ears Facebook page on July 1: “Big Ears is starting to awaken from its slumber...stay tuned for new about Big Ears 2014 in the coming weeks!”
Big Ears debuted in 2009 with a weekend of music in venues all over downtown Knoxville by Philip Glass, Matmos, the Necks, Pauline Oliveros, Michael Gira, and more. The following year was even bigger, with appearances by Vampire Weekend, the National, Dirty Projectors, Andrew W.K., and Gang Gang Dance, among dozens of other more obscure artists, headed by several performances by artist-in-residence Terry Riley. The festival was popular—Vampire Weekend and the National sold out the Tennessee Theatre—but always seemed somewhat overshadowed by Bonnaroo and AC’s similar but more crowd-pleasing Moogfest, which has been re-branded as the Mountain Oasis festival and is set for October in Asheville.
The third installment of Big Ears was postponed in late 2010 and again in the spring of 2011, but never officially canceled.