Last weekend, I went up to Bragg Jam in Macon for the 4th year in a row. There wasn’t a bus from Savannah as there has been for the past few years, but a number of Savannahians made their way to the annual concert crawl, and Revival Fest once again sponsored the stage at Fresh Produce Records.
Bragg Jam takes over a large section of downtown Macon for one manic, music-filled Saturday at the end of July. For 2017, the festival added a Friday night lineup at the Cox Capitol Theatre (why can’t Savannah have a venue like the Cox?), but my group decided to spend only one night.
In most years, I see several bands that are new to me at Bragg Jam, but this year I couldn’t resist seeing some truly tremendous acts that I’ve seen before, beginning with Family and Friends at the Cox. The Athens-based ensemble had the 5:30 time slot — early by Bragg Jam standards — but the theatre was largely full.
From there, my night included killer sets by Macon blues artist Robert Lee Coleman and his band in the VIP lounge on the second floor of the Crazy Bull, Okey Dokey at the Library Ballroom, Chrome Pony (with a short appearance by members of Twin Peaks) at the Cox, Little Tybee at the Library Ballroom, Pylon Reenactment Society at Fresh Produce, T. Hardy Morris and The Hardknocks at Grant’s Lounge, White Denim at the Cox, and Roadkill Ghost Choir at Grant’s.
The only three bands I had not seen were festival headliner White Denim, which was a little jammy for me late at night, the really fun Okey Dokey, and the thrilling Pylon Reenactment Society, which includes Vanessa Briscoe Hay from the original Pylon lineup.
Before driving back to Savannah on Sunday, we made a pilgrimage to Rose Hill Cemetery to see the graves of Gregg Allman, Duane Allman, and Berry Oakley and then stopped for brunch at the lovely new Piedmont Brewery & Kitchen in the heart of downtown.
With its wide streets and grand buildings, downtown Macon is a true gem. Over the last few years, revitalization efforts have been steadily paying off, and I look forward to new discoveries in the years to come.
For the sake of ease, I didn’t take my big Nikon on the trip, so I only shot with a FujiFilm x100t. The sensor often seemed to pick up too much color from the stage lights, which I decided to leave in some of the shots here. Because of the crowd and the darkness of the stage, I didn’t get any shots of Roadkill Ghost Choir at Grant’s, but after the jump you’ll find at least one of all the other acts I managed to see.
And to the other 70 or so bands that I did not see on Saturday, my apologies! As much as one would like to see everything at Bragg Jam, there’s just no way.
Family and Friends:
Robert Lee Coleman:
Pylon Reenactment Society:
T. Hardy Morris & The Hardknocks at Grant’s Lounge:
Rose Hill Cemetery: