Kris Kristofferson to headline at Arts Festival

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Country legend Kris Kristofferson is the marquee name on the 2010 Three Rivers Arts Festival lineup, which was announced Monday afternoon.

The prolific singer-songwriter-actor who wrote such classics as "Me and Bobby McGee" and "Help Me Make it Through the Night" will perform in Point State Park on Friday, June 11.

The 51st festival will open on June 4 with Texas roots-rocker Alejandro Escovedo, who just played the event two years ago.

The lineup will feature a pair of high-profile female acts from the WYEP-FM playlist: Ingrid Michaelson, a rising indie-pop star from New York best known for the breezy single "The Way I Am," and Patty Griffin, a venerable alt-country/folk artist who's become a favorite among Pittsburgh audiences. Her latest album, the gospel-inflected "Downtown Church," recorded in Downtown Presbyterian Church in Nashville, topped the Christian and folk charts.

Arriving on the comeback trail will be Guster, a Boston pop-rock outfit that hasn't released anything since 2006. The band is out this spring playing select shows while preparing a new album for fall release.

Rounding out the headliners are Los Amigos Invisibles, a Venezuelan dance band that combines disco and funk; New Orleans jazz-funk fusion group Dirty Dozen Brass Band; and Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, led by the former member of the Drive-By Truckers.

Mr. Kristofferson, 73, is part of country music's old guard, carrying on outside of the Nashville mainstream, much like contemporaries Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard. He's been on the road with the Don Was-produced "Closer to the Bone," an acclaimed album he released in September.

Here is the lineup, with two dates yet to be announced:

June 4: Alejandro Escovedo (7:30 p.m.)

June 5: Guster (7:30 p.m.)

June 6: Dirty Dozen Brass Band (6 p.m.) with Nathaniel Rateliff (5 p.m.)

June 7: TBA

June 8: Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit (7:30 p.m.) with Tift Merritt (6:30 p.m.)

June 9: Los Amigos Invisibles (7:30 p.m.)

June 10: Ingrid Michaelson (7:30 p.m.) with Matt Morris (6:30 p.m.)

June 11: Kris Kristofferson (7:30 p.m.) with Justin Townes Earl (6:30 p.m.)

June 12: TBA

June 13: Patty Griffin (6 p.m.) with Guggenheim Grotto (5 p.m.)

Scott Mervis: ; 412-263-2576. First Published April 13, 2010 4:00 AM


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