Hometown Rising Attracts More than 70,000 for First-Ever Country Music & Bourbon Festival

Published on September 16, 2019

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky—This past weekend, Kentucky was booming with country music, high temperatures, and endless amounts of bourbon and whiskey at the first-ever country music and bourbon festival, Hometown Rising.

With a sold-out crowd of 70,000 people, Danny Wimmer Presents, welcomed Hometown Rising that put on over 30 acts, including performances by Luke Bryan, Keith Urban, Little Big Town, Trace Adkins, Tim McGraw, Jimmie Allen, Raelyn Nelson Band, and IMAJ.

For two straight days and nights, the Highland Festival Grounds at the Kentucky Exposition Center played host to fans enjoying non-stop entertainment coupled with one-of-a-kind food and beverage options, including bourbon selections from nearly two dozen distilleries, a variety of culinary dishes inspired by Kentucky flavors and a range of onsite experiences.

Scott Adkins, President/CEO of Adkins Publicity (Photo Credit: Derrek Kupish Productions)

Thanks to Hometown Rising’s publicity partners, Adkins Publicity, Grit Daily was front-and-center at Hometown Rising, beginning Friday night at Fourth Street Live! speaking with several artists and fans about their experience in what will soon be an annual event.

Raelyn Nelson Band Lights Up 4th Street Live!

If you haven’t experienced the entertainment and retail complex located in Downtown Louisville, Kentucky, it’s definitely a place worth stopping by for a night…or two.

Fourth Street Live! is located on 4th street, offering a variety of bars and nightclubs, including Tavern On Fourth, The Sports & Social Club, Howl at the Moon, and PBR Louisville.

On Friday night, Grit Daily attended Hometown Rising’s Official Pre-Party, featuring Raelyn Nelson Band at 4th Street Live!

While dining at Bourbon Raw, we were able to sit, watch, and listen to Raelyn Nelson Band, led by Raelyn Nelson, an emerging country artist and granddaughter of music icon, Willie Nelson. We were absolutely mesmerized.

(L-R): Andrew Rossow, Raelyn Nelson, Taylor Marshall

According to Rolling Stone Country, Raleyn Nelson band “mixes old country and dirty garage rock.” And we definitely felt her love for music, watching her move across the downtown main stage.

Nelson just released her new single, “Weed and Whiskey,” which she performed Friday night and on Saturday at Hometown Rising. 

Saturday and Sunday’s Lineup

The Festival’s lineup included a wide-array of talent that you would almost never see in one location at any given point.

From Little Big Town, Jimmie Allen, and Bret Young, to Keith Urban, Trace Adkins, and Luke Bryan, country music fans were provided with top-notch performances, opening the 70,000+ crowd up to music that may have been new to their ears.


Little Big Town

Little Big Town at Hometown Rising Country Music & Bourbon Festival 2019 (Photo Credit: Steve Thrasher)

Keith Urban

Keith Urban
Hometown Rising Country Music & Bourbon Festival
(Photo Credit: Steve Thrasher)

Tim McGraw

Tim McGraw
Hometown Rising Country Music & Bourbon Festival
(Photo Credit: Steve Thrasher)

Luke Bryan

Luke Bryan at Hometown Rising Country Music & Bourbon Festival 2019 (Photo Credit: Nathan Zucker)

Hometown Rising was our first-ever country music festival and we couldn’t be more thrilled to have delivered two days of great music and incredible bourbon – two of Louisville’s cornerstones. We’re fans first and this was all about bringing a unique, tailored experience to the country music community. Thank you to the fans, artists and our partners for making our dream a reality,” shared DWP Founder Danny Wimmer.

Hometown Rising kicked off Danny Wimmer Presents’ Louisville Trifesta series, which continues with Bourbon & Beyond September 20-22, and Louder Than Life September 27-29. Tickets are still available at at www.bourbonandbeyond.com and www.louderthanlifefestival.com.

Stay tuned for Grit Daily’s continued coverage from Hometown Rising this past weekend.

Featured image: (Photo Credit: Sam Shapiro) 

Andrew "Drew" Rossow is a former contract editor at Grit Daily.

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