Boston Calling is Bringing Some Country to the City

Boston Calling, New England’s premier music festival, is set to break new ground by incorporating more country music into its lineup. This year, the festival will witness a historic moment with Tyler Childers headlining the event. Known for its eclectic mix of genres, Boston Calling is now making room for the soulful twangs and heartfelt lyrics of country music. Let’s dive into the fascinating journey of Ward Hayden and his band, the Outliers, and the remarkable ascent of Tyler Childers, alongside other exciting country acts gracing the festival stage.

Ward Hayden: From Scituate to Stardom

Ward Hayden, a talented musician hailing from the seaside town of Scituate, Massachusetts, has a story that resonates with many aspiring artists. Despite the geographical and cultural distance, his first record deal came from Lonesome Day Records, a country and bluegrass label based in the small town of Boonville, Kentucky. This significant milestone in 2011 marked the beginning of Hayden’s journey in the music industry. Boston Calling is Bringing Some Country to the City

Hayden’s band, originally known as Girls, Guns and Glory, gained recognition with their self-released debut album. However, the real surprise was not the Scituate-to-Boonville connection, but rather the fact that Lonesome Day Records chose to sign Hayden’s band over a local Kentucky talent, Tyler Childers. Reflecting on this decision, Hayden humorously remarks, “I’m sure they regret that at this point.” Boston Calling brings country music to the city on Saturday. Headliner Tyler Childers will perform on the Green Stage at 9 p.m. Before Childers, listen to plenty of other artists, like Phish’s Trey Anastasio & Classic Tab and Jessie Murph.

Tyler Childers: From Overlooked Talent to Headliner

Tyler Childers, the red-headed singer from Kentucky, has since become one of the most influential voices in independent country music. With over half a dozen album releases, Childers has captivated audiences with his authentic storytelling and raw vocal power. His headlining performance at Boston Calling marks a significant achievement, being the first country artist to headline the festival on Saturday, sandwiched between Ed Sheeran and the Killers.

Childers’ journey is a testament to perseverance and undeniable talent. Despite being overlooked initially, he has carved out a space for himself in the music world, earning accolades and a dedicated fanbase. His presence at Boston Calling signifies the growing appreciation for country music in diverse musical landscapes.

Saturday Lineup: A Feast for Country Music Fans

The Saturday lineup at Boston Calling promises an unforgettable experience for country music enthusiasts. Alongside Tyler Childers, the festival will feature performances by a variety of talented artists:

  • The Castellows: This sister trio from Georgia brings a fresh, harmonious sound that blends traditional country with modern influences. Their stage presence and musicality are sure to captivate the audience.
  • Tanner Usrey: A songwriter from Texas, Usrey’s poignant lyrics and soulful melodies reflect the heart and soul of country music. His performance is anticipated to be a highlight of the day.
  • Red Clay Strays: This fast-rising band from Alabama has been making waves with their dynamic performances and unique sound. They will also have the honor of opening for the Rolling Stones at Gillette Stadium on May 30, showcasing their versatility and broad appeal.

The Evolution of Boston Calling

Boston Calling has evolved significantly since its inception, embracing a diverse array of musical genres. The inclusion of country music this year is a testament to the festival’s commitment to offering a rich and varied musical experience. By featuring artists like Tyler Childers and Ward Hayden, Boston Calling is bridging the gap between different musical traditions and creating a space where all music lovers can find something to enjoy.

Why Country Music Belongs at Boston Calling

Country music has long been a genre that tells stories of life, love, and hardship, resonating deeply with listeners. The decision to include more country acts at Boston Calling reflects a broader trend of genre blending and the festival’s recognition of the genre’s widespread appeal. For fans of country music, this year’s festival offers an opportunity to enjoy some of the best talents in the industry, right in the heart of Boston.


The 13th edition of Boston Calling is set to be a memorable one, with a lineup that celebrates the diversity of music and the inclusion of country music acts like Tyler Childers, Ward Hayden and the Outliers, and others. As the festival continues to grow and evolve, it remains a beacon of musical excellence, bringing together artists and fans from all walks of life.

For those who love the soulful sounds of country music, Boston Calling is the place to be this year. Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to experience a blend of musical genres and witness history in the making as Tyler Childers takes the stage.

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