The Roots of Red Wing: Three friends and a shared passion for music

As The Steel Wheels have grown and thrived in the last couple years, they began dreaming of creating a festival of roots music in the Shenandoah Valley.  In 2011, they began talking with mutual friends Michael Weaver and Jeremiah Jenkins about producing such a festival and plans started taking shape.  Soon after, Black Bear Productions was formed and the groundwork was laid for the first annual Red Wing Roots Music Festival.  After much searching, Natural Chimneys Park and Campground was chosen as the ideal location for the festival.  After approaching Augusta County Parks and Recreation Department, it was agreed by all that this would be a great event for the Park, the community and the region. Upon receiving official approval from the Augsta County Board of Supervisors the first annual festival took place in July of 2013.

One of four stages set off by the beauty of Natural Chimneys. Photo by Aaron Johnston Photography, 2013

One of four stages set off by the beauty of Natural Chimneys. Photo by Aaron Johnston Photography, 2013

The vision was to create a positive, inclusive, family friendly environment to celebrate roots music, camping and outdoor activities such as biking, swimming, and hiking.  During the first year, we were able to achieve these goals. Families and friends planned their vacations around the festival, spent the weekend enjoying the beautiful Park, sharing campfires, great food, and of course, amazing music.
What will it be like this year?  Well, we will do our best to set the stage for an even better year but really the Festival will be what we all bring to it.  It’s about each person coming together to create something special. Whether you come as a volunteer, a musician, a vendor or a spectator, we are all creating the Red Wing Roots experience.

We thank each person who was a part of year one and we look forward to welcoming all the newcomers in 2014.

– Michael, Jeremiah and The Steel Wheels


steel-wheels-2014About The Steel Wheels

The Steel Wheels are an American roots music band, writing and playing music in the closely related but unique styles of blues, bluegrass, old-time music, and fiddle music. Their music respects the past but lives in the present, and layers musical textures with a modern edge to create a new sound. The four-piece group is based in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.

Honors, awards and distinctions:
  • Independent Music Award for Best Album – Americana
  • Independent Music Award for Best Song – A Cappella
  • Their song “Rain in the Valley” was chosen as NPR‘s Song of the Day for May 10, 2012.
  • More about The Steels Wheels