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It was about as hot and muggy as it gets on Saturday (May 30) when the Americana Music Association’s Cross-County Lines festival got underway in Franklin, Tenn., with an exemplary lineup of folk, roots and country performers, including Patty Griffin, John Hiatt, Ashley Monroe and Brandy Clark.
On-and-off rain had upped the steam factor at Franklin’s Harlinsdale Farm, but that didn’t dull the enthusiasm for any of the daylight performers, which alternated between main-stage full-band shows and smaller-stage acoustic shows. On the small stages, attendees were treated to sets from Luther Dickinson, Joe Pug and Brandy Clark, who played many songs from her acclaimed 12 Stories album as well as her hits for Miranda Lambert (“Mama’s Broken Heart”) and The Band Perry (“Better Dig Two”).
Across the field on the main stage, young Okie Parker Millsap displayed a bluesy sensibility as he howled through songs like “Truck Stop Gospel” and “Old Time Religion.” Ashley Monroe offered many of the retro country delights from her album Like a Rose, as well as the Pistol Annies’ “Unhappily Married” and yet another Miranda Lambert hit, “Heart Like Mine.”
Patty Griffin took the main stage as the sun dipped and played a set that included selections from her recent release American Kid (like “Don’t Let Me Die in Florida”), as well as the romantic Spanish-language ballad “Mil Besos” from 1,000 Kisses, and more. After nightfall, John Hiatt closed out the festival armed with his deep catalog of songs and backed by a muscular rock ’n’ roll band.
The Americana Music Association , which held the Cross-County Lines festival, also hosts the Americana Honors and Awards each September in Nashville.