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Dylan Liles remembers he was in sixth grade when he first heard Casting Crowns perform live.

Long before they took the stage as the first headliner of the 30th annual Riverbend Festival, the Coca-Cola Stage lawn already was well saturated with stalwart fans of Huey Lewis and the News.

As a mobile disc jockey in Dalton, Ga., in 1986, current 107.9 Big FM program director Rick Zeisig said he snapped up the Huey Lewis and The News album “Fore!” just after its release and played the single “Hip To Be Square” for a high-school dance audience.

When Georgia native Mickey Thomas joined the popular band Jefferson Starship as its lead singer 30 years ago, little did he know the band would one day bear his name: Starship featuring Mickey Thomas.

Riverbend 2011 will open with old-school rock as Huey Lewis and the News and Starship, starring Mickey Thomas, have been booked to perform on opening night, according to executive director Chip Baker.

Pull out your hankies, fellow 'benders, because this will be my final blog.

Well folks, the end, as they say, is nigh. When the last of the bit of explosive artwork leaves its mortar tube to close out the fireworks this evening, another Riverbend will be over and done with.

George Clinton may have signed a check to the city of Chattanooga guaranteeing a night of funk, but that check wasn't cashed until Ivan Neville took the stage last night as the front man for the New Orleans dirty funk ensemble Dumpstaphunk, when they kicked things off opposite Billy Currington on the Unum Stage last night.

As the great Mike Jagger and the London Bach Choir have been telling us for all these years, you can't always get what you want. In the case of tonight's headliner, George Clinton and Parliament-Funkadelic, those words rung surprisingly true.


The Riverbend Festival moved down to Martin Luther King Boulevard Monday as thousands attended the annual Bessie Smith Strut.
  • June 14, 2011
Preparations continue for the nine-day Riverbend music festival that opens Friday.
  • June 5, 2008

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