Foo Fighters are headlining this year’s Bourbon & Beyond. | Courtesy of Foo Fighters

Although last year’s Bourbon & Beyond was awash in mud and muck and eventually cancelled, this year the crew is truly outdoing itself. We weren’t sure what names to put in the headline, because all three days — Sept. 20-22 — are packed with world-class talent.

Let’s just take a look.

Friday, Sept. 20: Foo Fighters, John Fogerty, Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweat, The Flaming Lips, Live, Joan Jett & The Blackhearts, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, Greensky Bluegrass, Blackberry Smoke, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Pearl, Mipso, Amythyst Kiah

Joan Jett! | Courtesy of Joan Jett

Saturday, Sept. 21: Robert Plant & The Sensational Space Shifters, Daryl Hall & John Oates, Trey Anastasio Band, Alison Krauss, Grace Potter, Squeeze, Jenny Lewis, Del McCoury Band, Samantha Fish, The White Buffalo, Maggie Rose, Patrick Droney, The Travelin’ McCourys, Cedric Burnside, Ben Sollee

Sunday, Sept. 22: Zac Brown Band, ZZ Top, Leon Bridges, Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros, Kurt Vile & the Violaters, Margo Price, Little Steven & the Disciples of Soul, Edie Brickell & New Bohemians, White Reaper, Whiskey Myers, Southern Avenue, Caroline Jones, Dustbowl Revival, The Lil’ Smokies, Front Country

Also worth noting since there has been some criticism in both Louisville and national lineups regarding the lack of female performers at music festivals, this one features some of the top female musicians today, including Joan Jett, Alison Krauss, Grace Potter, Jenny Lewis, Edie Brickell and Margo Price, among several others. Well done.

As Insider reported last month, Danny Zimmer Presents, producer of Bourbon & Beyond as well as Louder Than Life, will be moving the location of both festivals to the Highland Festival Grounds at the Kentucky Fair & Expo Center. Also, they’ll be adding another festival to the lineup with Hometown Rising, a country music-bent event that runs Sept. 14-15.

So basically, for three weeks in a row in September (Hometown Rising: Sept. 14-15; Bourbon & Beyond: Sept. 20-22; Louder Than Life: Sept. 27-29), there will be a music festival going on at the fairgrounds, and you can bet bourbon will be flowing at each.

Speaking of bourbon, many distilleries will be represented at Bourbon & Beyond, and these guys have already signed on: 1792, Angel’s Envy, Barrell Bourbon, Buffalo Trace, Coopers’ Craft, Elijah Craig, Four Roses, Jeptha Creed, Kentucky Peerless, Michter’s, Old Forester, StoneHammer and Wild Turkey.

Tickets for Bourbon & Beyond will go on sale Friday, March 15, at noon.

Sara Havens
Sara Havens is the Culture Editor at Insider Louisville, known around town as the Bar Belle ( She's a former editor of LEO Weekly and has written for Playboy and The Alcohol Professor. Havens is the author of two books: "The Bar Belle" and "The Bar Belle Vol. 2."