The Blues Times Two
Wild Child and Devon Gilfillian headline Blues on the Green for its only 2 nights in 2023
With all the raucous festivals in Austin, it's a relief to show up at Zilker Park with a picnic blanket and relax for an evening of music. That said, Blues on the Green has changed over the years.
Although the idea remains the same, this year Blues on the Green is for two nights only: July 18 and 19. The pressure of the formerly monthly engagement has changed a little from "We'll make the next one" to "We'll have to shift our schedules around so we don't break our six-year streak."
People of the former disposition might enjoy The Drop-In, which is a lot like Blues on the Green, but on the lawn at the Long Center. It also isn't as faithful to one genre, and does require an RSVP, but it's still free. ACL Radio sponsors both event series, and The Drop-In will continue after Blues on the Green has come and gone this year.
That makes the two Blues acts at Zilker that much more important. This year, they're Devon Gilfillian with Phillip Phillips on Tuesday, and Wild Child with Thebrosfresh on Wednesday.
Gilfillian plays the Blues in several forms, from hot electric guitar riffs, to dance tracks verging on disco. There's often an R&B feel, but even more present are the gospel vocal stylings. Phillips, the 2012 American Idol winner whose song "Home" took Americana by storm, is opening the show.
The next day, is a very local day with two Austin-based bands. Wild Child takes the stage with gentler, acoustic Americana — it's more Blues-adjacent, but the flavor is more present in live arrangements. Thebrosfresh will open with R&B, hip-hop, and rock with Louisiana flair.
Another change this year is an opportunity to get close to the stage in an exclusive viewing area with its own bar. The $100 ticket includes two drinks, and children under 12 can enter for free.
More information about Blues on the Green is available at acl-radio.com.