Bear Creek adds legendary funksters to lineup

Three Generations of Funk converge at Bear Creek Music & Art Festival!

Three generations of funk are set to converge at this year's Bear Creek Music & Art Festival Nov.13-15 at the beautiful Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park, voted "Florida's Best Live Music Venue" by readers of Florida Monthly Magazine earlier this year.

World-class music is scheduled from such legendary artists as keyboardist Bernie Worrell (Parliament/Funkadelic, Talking Heads) and trombonist Fred Wesley (James Brown's Band), to current club favorites Galactic and Karl Denson's Tiny Universe, with exciting fresh, new sounds from The New Mastersounds and Toubab Krewe. Just a small cross-section, more than 50 other artists will fill the peak autumn weekend with high-energy, upbeat and danceable music with a dozen performers offering two entire shows.

By bringing together all three generations of artists, the Bear Creek Music & Art Festival features a number of "Artists at Large" who are able to freely collaborate with other artists with a high degree of spontaneity. Among these "Artists at Large" are funk legends, Bernie Worrell, a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame perhaps best known for his work with Parliament-Funkadelic and Talking Heads, along with Fred Wesley, a pivotal member of funk poineer James Brown's band, the Count Basie Orchestra and many more.

Among the featured bands performing two sets at this year's festival are Galactic, Karl Denson's Tiny Universe, Ivan Neville's Dumpstaphunk, The New Mastersounds, Toubab Krewe, Dub Conscious and Lettuce. Other festival highlights include Perpetual Groove, Lotus, Steve Kimock Crazy Engine, Robert Walter's 20th Congress, Hill Country Revue, Benevento Russo Duo, The Slip, Bonerama, Pnuma Trio, Papa Mali Band, Garage A Trois, Yonrico Scott Band and more than two dozen more. The complete artist lineup can be found online at

In addition to live music, 12 talented painters will create live art during the musical performances, providing their own artistic interpretations of their experience while on stage. These original paintings will be displayed and sold in the Bear Creek Art Tent.

Giving Back & Getting Involved:

Continuing its commitment to community in a variety of displays, Bear Creek once again presents its 'Green Program' - the festival's pursuit for environmental improvement with a pledge to use more biodegradable materials, exhibit water conservation policies, habitat protection efforts, increase recycling and more throughout the park's environmentally-friendly facility.

Bear Creek also hosts a weekend-long food drive in support of The Food Bank of Suwannee Valley by asking all festival patrons to bring a donation of canned goods and non-perishable food items. These items are placed in one of the Festival's many receptacle barrels located at the main gate and throughout the venue; in addition, anyone bringing five canned goods or more will receive a complimentary festival poster and sticker for their contribution. The festival is also hosting the second annual Bear Creek Feed the Hungry Disc Golf Tournament happening on the Music Park's 18-hole disc golf course. Its mission is to raise funds for the Food Bank of Suwannee Valley. This fun, casual and charitable disc golf tournament raised hundreds of dollars as well as hundreds of pounds of food during the 2008 event. Tournament schedule & sign-up details are available online.

Through proceeds and donations from a silent auction at the event, the Bear Creek Music Festival will support The Dreams of Recovery Foundation, Inc., a non-profit 501(c)3 charitable organization formed to assist individuals with spinal cord and brain injuries. The funds raised will help these individuals receive the therapy they so desperately need and the necessary equipment that will promote nerve regeneration and muscle mass. Grants of financial support will be offered for individuals to participate in approved therapy programs which are not covered by insurance, grant individuals with equipment to improve their daily life, and grant approved institutions necessary funding to conduct scientific research to find a cure for paralysis. 

The Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park:

Conveniently located between Jacksonville and Tallahassee, the Bear Creek Music Festival is located just minutes off of I-75 in Northern Florida at the Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park in Live Oak, Florida off US 129 north at the famous Suwannee River.

The Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park is a one-of-a-kind outdoor music venue and campground and was recently bestowed the honor of Best Live Music Venue in 2009 by readers of Florida Monthly Magazine. The 700+ acre resort overlooks the historic Suwannee River and offers unmatched primitive campsites, water and electric campsites, five shower houses and cabin rentals, as well as a full amenity package including canoeing, an authentic craft village, mini golf and disk golf courses, full service restaurant, natural amphitheater, music, festivals, a general store, golf cart rentals and more.

Ticketing Options:

Thursday night's pre-festival kick-off party starts the vibe off right Nov. 12 featuring full sets from Toubab Krewe, Pnuma Live PA, Pimps of Joytime, The Heavy Pets, Brother Bean & Gravity A. Admission for Thursday night's show is $40 and includes music, primitive camping and is only available to weekend festival ticket buyers.

VIP packages offer a more upscale festival experience including access to all music performances, primitive camping Friday through Sunday, exclusive access to the VIP area, reduced price beverages and three meals (Friday - Sunday lunch). VIP Ticket prices start at $325 until Nov. 5 and are available online at or by calling the Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park Office at 386-364-1683.

The Park office can also process requests to upgrade already purchased weekend tickets to VIP Tickets. Bear Creek Music Festival advanced weekend tickets are available now online for the early pricing of $140 through Nov. 5 and includes all music performances and primitive camping Friday through Sunday. There is no charge for children 12 and under with a paid adult weekend ticket.

Official Bear Creek Music & Arts Festival website: