Author: BerksCountryFest_WP

Alex Meixner

Alex Meixner, a 2007 Grammy nominee, is a musical chameleon. He has performed traditional ethnic music since he was 4 years old and has extensive experience in a wide variety of musical genres (everything from classical to jazz to pop to world music from around the world!) His true passion lies in entertaining audiences…. he does this primarily with an international party mix of polka music. See a live show. Become a believer.

Gaye Adegbalola & The Wild Rutz

Gaye Adegbalola, Blues Music Award winner (formerly called the W. C. Handy Award) and a founding member of Saffire – The Uppity Blues Women, plays guitar, harmonica and is a composer. She has recorded 10 CDs on Alligator Records and has toured widely throughout
the U.S. and internationally.
Gaye has also released five CDs on her own Hot Toddy Music label: “Neo-Classic Blues” with Roddy Barnes, “Blues Gone Black” by Blue Mama Black Son (Gaye & her son Juno), “Gaye Without Shame,” her Parents’ Choice Gold Award winning Children’s Blues CD “Blues in All Flavors” and “Is It Still Good to Ya?” by Gaye & The Wild Rutz.
A former Virginia State Teacher of the Year, Gaye is also in demand for workshops, lectures and motivational public speaking. A longtime activist, she is presently involved with issues of diversity and is committed to the struggle for LGBT rights.

Gaye Adegbalola & the Wild Rutz perform a cappella blues with percussion and occasional guitar. The Rutz consist of Tanyah Dadze Cotton, Gloria Jackson and Marta Fuentes. From time to time, these seasoned activists musicians would break out in song when hanging out.
In 2013, they decided to formally work together to create this unique sound focusing on the primary i n s t r u m e n t of the blues – THE VOICE.
They now present a humorous, informative, uplifting and entertaining show of roots music – primarily blues, plus R&B, work songs, field hollers, and spirituals – in support of empowerment and equality for all.
These women are longtime historians, healers, visionaries and activists. They have used their voices to promote the causes of racial, LGBT, economic and women’s civil rights in events such as voter registration fundraisers and in rallies to stop domestic violence of all kinds. The group’s repertoire is mainly drawn from Gaye’s original songs.

Tickets: $25

Storytelling, featuring Gary Reid, Roger Mallon and Charles J. Adams III

This Berks Country Fest Storytellers event features Gary Reid presenting a one-man play titled “A Life of Sorrow – the Life and Times of Carter Stanley”; Roger Mallon as Mark Twain; and Charles J. Adams III telling ghost stories.

Storytelling is a highly venerated art form in many cultures around the world.  It is a way to convey knowledge, feelings, traditions and pass along moral or life-shaping lessons, and it’s a much-beloved form of entertainment.

This storytelling session features the talents of:


Gary Reid

Gary Reid, who brings one of the founding fathers of traditional Americana, rural, country and bluegrass music to life through words and song as he channels Carter Stanley in his show, Short Life of Sorrow.
Get a sneak peek at Reid’s show here:



Roger Mallon

Roger Mallon, who portrays the legendary Mark Twain as he brings Twain’s work to life in this one-man show.



Charles J. Adams III

Charles J. Adams III, noted author and public speaker speaking on the topic of ghost lore and legends

Tickets: $12



G.E. Smith: History of the Electric Guitar

One of the most in demand blues/rock guitarists in the world is a mysterious character who goes by the name of G.E. Smith. Millions of TV viewers know his face — and the unruly blond ponytail that was always falling across it — from his stint of fronting the Saturday Night Live Band.

After spending six years as lead guitarist for Hall & Oates, Smith became musical director of the popular weekly sketch comedy show. He led the band for 10 years, and won an Emmy Award for his work.

He’s also toured with Bob Dylan and played with a long list of notable artists.

After his tenure at Saturday Night Live ended, he and his wife, singer/songwriter Taylor Barton, created a critically acclaimed boutique label called Green Mirror Music. They are in their ninth year, releasing rootsy blues and neo-pop.

Tickets: $20

Seldom Scene

More than 40 years since Seldom Scene began playing together at weekly jam sessions in Ben Eldridge’s Bethesda, Md., basement, Seldom Scene has become one of the single greatest contributors to the progression of bluegrass while setting a new standard and attracting new audiences to the genre.

Seldom Scene continues to excel in the bluegrass scene and recently received critical acclaim for their work. Their latest CD, “Scenechronized,” was nominated for a Grammy Award.

Tickets: $25

Caroline Reese & the Drifting Fifth

Caroline Reese & the Drifting Fifth is an Americana/indie-rock band. The group has two years and three albums behind them, and they’ve opened for Ben Folds, Chris Stapleton, Gregory Alan Isakov, Israel Nash and the Secret Sisters.
Reese is a songwriter born and raised in Reading, Pa.
The group blends Reese’s folk/country background with electric guitarist Mark Watter’s alt-rock electric guitar to create sound that’s been lighting up bars, festivals and audiences since they formed in May of 2013.

Tickets: $12

Guitar-a-Rama featuring Laurence Juber, Will Ackerman and David Cullen

Tickets: $15, $20, $25

Fusing folk, jazz and pop styles, two-time Grammy-winner Laurence Juber creates a multifaceted performance that belies the use of only one acoustic guitar.
First internationally recognized as lead guitarist in Beatle Paul McCartney’s band Wings, Juber has since established himself as a world-renowned guitar virtuoso, composer and arranger. He has released 23 solo albums which spotlight his unique touch and tone on solo acoustic guitar.

Will Ackerman is a Grammy Award-winning American guitarist and composer of acoustic-based instrumental music. He founded and ran for many years the influential New Age record label Windham Hill Records. As a producer, he is the recipient of more than 20 platinum and gold records in the United States and internationally.

David Cullen is a Grammy Award winner for Best Pop Instrumental Recording. He has performed with Will Ackerman, Samite, Tracy Silverman, Darol Anger, The DePue Brothers Band and Michael Manring. David also has played with The Jaco Big Band and with the Philly Pops.
Cullen has performed in a dazzling wide range of styles including classical, jazz and world Music. David has performed throughout North America for Classical Guitar Societies, Jazz Festivals, and Performing Arts Series. He has released 10 CDs for the acoustic guitar label Solid Air Records. David Cullen’s recordings have been featured on NPR stations across America.



Maidencreek Old-time Music Festival at Maier's Grove in Blandon. Photo by Bill Uhrich 7/13/2014 Ken Gehret of West Lawn performs Sunday.

Ken Gehret

Ken Gehret has been performing as a musician for more than 30 years, primarily as a guitarist/violinist, in various musical scenarios.
Ken performs, teaches, composes and arranges for over 17 instruments including: voice, woodwind, reed, string and keyboards, but his main instruments are guitar and violin.
His musical experiences stem from a primarily country music background, performing with well known stars ( at the age of 18), including Roy Clark and Mell Tellis.


vin downes press photo

Vin Downes


Vin Downes
 is a recording artist, solo performer, active freelance guitarist and a public school
music teacher in New Jersey, where he currently teaches classical guitar at Bayonne High
He has recorded and performed with musicians including Will Ackerman, Liz Story
and Tony Levin.
For more, visit




Trevor Gordon Hall

Rated as one of the top 30 guitarists in the world under 30 years of age by Acoustic Guitar magazine comes an instrumentalist from Philadelphia whose compositions range in style from edgy driving rhythms to soft melodic phrases. Trevor Gordon Hall sets himself apart by leaving no physical aspect of the guitar untouched and weaving together different textures into grand yet intimate and lyrical compositions.

The Ultra Kings

The Ultra Kings are a rockabilly/rock & roll act hailing from the northeastern Pennsylvania. The Ultra Kings are Steve Zoot on the double bass, Carl Von Ehst on the drum kit, and Rick Kay on the guitar and lead vocals.
The Ultra Kings’ live performances are infused with a high-energy blend of rockabilly, rock & roll and honky tonk.

Tickets: $15



What began as a studio session turned into a live touring band.
Dave Lewis, and later Amy Tomaszewski, recorded Lewis’ brainchild: a full-length, 15-song debut album Hate Mail From A Love Child in late summer of 2014. A total of 19 musicians, from both southeastern PA and around the world, including New York, Tokyo and Nashville, are featured on the album.
Now, Lewis and Tomaszewski – known as Mo7s – are currently performing live shows both as a guitar/vocal duo and as a four-piece band with drums and bass. Performing throughout southeastern PA, Mo7s has played venues as varied as Musikfest, FirstEnergy Stadium, Kutztown University and Parx Casino. They pull their live repertoire from their own catalog of originals as well as 1950s and 1960s rock, country, rockabilly and R&B.

Tickets: $15

Uncle Jake & the 18 Wheel Gang

What began as a professional campfire jam experience between Lefty Wilson and Brown Bird “Coontail” Gunther James, quickly recruited the expertise of Stove “The Iron Swan” Moose and Klabe Dunn for an ultimate open-mic and late-night festival jug-less Jug-Grass adventure. Blazing an unrivaled path through the local Pennsylvania bar and festival scene, the Gang had soon snatched up the honorary services of Hamburg native Sir Brandon “Re-bar” The First and those of the-one-and-only, Monkey “Mike” Salamito complete their current, touring, name-droppin’, finger poppin’ line-up of Uncle Jake & the 18 Wheel Gang.

Tickets $12

The Wallace Brothers Band

The Wallace Brothers Band are putting the ‘South’ back into South Philadelphia.  Twin brothers Zachary and Colby Wallace and their cohort Khoa ‘Lucky’ Pham are not who you might expect to be writing and performing songs about sleeping in a car, being broke and happy, love so strong it hurts, traveling the world, and spending the night in the pen, but the band sure enough does live the life they sing about. Their wanderlust and love of all forms of music can be heard in their music and lyrics.  Formed in 2007 through serendipitous circumstances, The Wallace Brothers Band performs roughly 200 shows per year and are equally as capable crooning in bar rooms as they are headlining festivals.