Actor Jeff Daniels, who was raised in Chelsea, Michigan, will emcee The Ark’s 44th annual Ann Arbor Folk Festival later this month. Going virtual this year, the two-day event will raise funds for The Ark and feature acts such as The War and Treaty, Sierra Ferrell, actor and musician Kiefer Sutherland, and Michigan-based groups The Accidentals and RFD Boys.
The festival kicks off at 7 p.m. on Jan. 29 with streamed performances from The War and Treaty, a duo with ties to Albion that released the album Hearts Town in 2020; Colin Hay, a Scotland-born Australian artist who comes to the festival with a new song, “Now and the Evermore;” Sutherland, who released his second album in 2019; and Ron Pope, who went viral in 2009 for his song “A Drop in the Ocean” and released a new album, Bone Structure, last year. The Accidentals, a group that hails from Traverse City, will also perform with Nashville songwriter Kim Richey from The Ark at 316 S. Main St. in Ann Arbor.
The Jan. 30 lineup includes performances by Robert Earl Keen, who has released 19 records over the last three decades; Bruce Cockburn, who was inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame in September; Sierra Ferrell, a multi-instrumentalist who is working on her full-length debut; and Andrea von Kampen; a Nebraska artist who released her first album in 2019. The RFD Boys, an Ann Arbor-based group that recently celebrated its 50th anniversary with a new album, Still Delivering, will play direct from The Ark stage.
As host, Daniels will provide artist intros and share some of his own music. The actor has been playing at folk venues across the country since 2000, and he released his latest album, Alive and Well Enough, in 2020. This is Daniels’ third appearance at the Ann Arbor Folk Festival. He first emceed the event in 2007, and he headlined the festival in 2014.
Tickets are on sale now and start at $20 for single night passes and $37.50 for two-night series passes. Special bundles, ranging from $60 to $900, are also available and include festival merch, snack baskets, and a tax-deductible donation to The Ark. Ticket holders will have up to a week to view the festival as many times as they’d like.
For the full lineup and other information, visit theark.org.