The inaugural Waynestock, which took place in 2011, was born out of a desire by friends and colleagues of long-time News Sentinel music writer Wayne Bledsoe to stage a benefit in the wake of the sudden death of his son, Andrew.

Last year, the rally cry went out again after the unexpected loss of local music scene titan Phil Pollard.

Both festivals became more than just fundraisers. Over three nights at Relix Variety Theatre in downtown Knoxville, musicians gave everything they had, fans gave all they could afford and both the Bledsoe and Pollard families were humbled and touched by the overwhelming display generosity and love.

This year, Waynestock faced a dilemma: How do you recreate such magic in the absence of such universal loss? Easy answer: You don’t. You move on, and you build on the spirit and success of the past two years to make new magic.

Which is why we’re pleased to announce “Waynestock 3,” scheduled to take place Feb. 1 and 2 at Relix Variety Theatre (1208 N. Central Knoxville’s “Happy Holler” neighborhood). Starting at 7 p.m. at a cost of $5 per night, it’s an opportunity to experience that Waynestock magic, see some old (and new) friends and raise money for a good cause.

All proceeds raised this year will be donated to the Community School for the Arts in Knoxville, the first nonprofit organization of its kind in the state of Tennessee to provide free, quality instruction in all the arts to children who would otherwise not be able to afford them. (For more information, visit

The lineup and schedule for both nights:

Friday, Feb. 1: Black Atticus at 7 p.m.; Kevin Abernathy at 8 p.m.; Con Hunley with Mic Harrison & The High Score at 9 p.m.; The Rockwells at 10 p.m.; The Mutations at 11 p.m.; and Yak Strangler at midnight.

Saturday, Feb. 2: Kukuly and The Gypsy Fuego at 7 p.m.; Dor L’Dor at 8 p.m.; Guy Marshall at 9 p.m.; Sam Quinn and Taiwan Twin at 10 p.m.; Johnny Astro and The Big Bang at 11 p.m.; and at midnight, it’s the “Waynestock All-Star Jam,” curated by Tim and Susan Lee and featuring a who’s who of Waynestock participants past and present.