Wildlands Festival supports cherished landscapes

Robert Earl Keen and Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real headline inaugural event

New & Notable

Montana State University is partnering with Outlaw Partners and other area organizers to bring the inaugural Wildlands Festival, featuring Robert Earl Keen and Lukas Nelson and his band, Promise of the Real, to MSU Romney Oval in Bozeman on Aug. 10. It marks the first concert in the history of the university to be held in the oval, according to Duane Morris, MSU’s director of event services.

The event celebrates the state’s wildlands, and offers an opportunity for concert-goers to support the spaces that they cherish, while enjoying live music in a picturesque outdoor setting.

A portion of the proceeds will benefit Gallatin Valley Land Trust, Montana Land Reliance, and Yellowstone Forever – three nonprofits whose missions align with the festival’s ethos of bringing people together who share a love of nature, outdoor recreation, parks, trails, and the enjoyment of what makes Montana special.

“We look forward to sharing in this special celebration of music, community, and the wonder of our natural world,” said Heather White, CEO and president of Yellowstone Forever.

Both Keen and Nelson, son of the legend Willie Nelson but fast becoming a star in his own right, are singers and songwriters known for writing and performing music best described as Americana, which Morris said will be a good fit for an informal festival.

“The team at Outlaw Partners is excited about this opportunity to partner with Montana State University on the inaugural Wildlands Festival,” said EJ Daws of the Outlaw Partners. “The intimate outdoor venue of Romney Oval will be an outstanding place to spend a Montana summer evening, enjoying live music from two iconic artists and celebrating community and the amazing places that make Montana special and inviting.”

About Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real

Wildlands Festival: Lukas Nelson
Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real join Robert Earl Keen at the inaugural Wildlands Festival in Bozeman.Photo © Myriam Santos

Since forming 10 years ago, the buzz surrounding Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real has been quietly intensifying. During that time, the 28-year old singer/songwriter/guitarist and his bandmates have played hundreds of shows and major festivals all over the world and built a devoted underground following.

Nelson’s profile continued to rise when he contributed three songs and heavenly vocals to his dad, Willie Nelson’s, 2012 album, Heroes, their voices blending with potent DNA.

Then two years later, life took another turn skyward when Neil Young decided to make Promise of the Real his touring and studio band. Young has guided the young musicians ever since, as they’ve backed the legend on tour around the world and on his two most recent albums.

In addition, Nelson co-produced the music for the upcoming remake of “A Star is Born,” writing songs with Lady Gaga, who stars in the movie. Nelson and his band also appear in the film, which will be released in October, as co-star Bradley Cooper’s band.

For more information, visit lukasnelson.com.

About Robert Earl Keen

Wildlands Festival: Robert Earl Keen
Robert Earl Keen: “The road goes on forever …”

“The road goes on forever …” It’s not always easy to sum up a career – let alone a life’s ambition – so succinctly, but those five words from Robert Earl Keen’s calling-card anthem just about do it.

You can complete the lyric with the next five words – the ones routinely shouted back at Keen by thousands of fans a night (“and the party never ends!”) – just to punctuate the point with a flourish, but it’s the part about the journey that gets right to the heart of what makes Keen tick.

Three-decades on from the release of his debut album – with 18 other records to his name, thousands of shows under his belt and still no end in sight to the road ahead – Keen remains as committed to, and inspired by, his muse as ever. And as for accruing recognition, well, he’s done alright on that front, too; from his humble beginnings on the Texas folk scene, he’s blazed a peer, critic, and fan-lauded trail that’s earned him living-legend (not to mention pioneer) status in the Americana music world. Learn more at billions.com/robertearlkeen.

Wildlands Festival: Tickets & such

Tickets are $47 for general admission and $177 for VIP tickets, which include access to a hospitality tent with food and beverages, and a preferred viewing area for the show.

Concert goers are encouraged to bring blankets and low-rise chairs to the festival. Local food trucks will be parked at the venue and beer and wine will be sold (no outside food or beverages are allowed).

A percentage of all ticket sales and sponsorships will be directly donated to the three nonprofits chosen to benefit from this year’s event. “Our goal is to not only curate an amazing night of music in an incredible venue, but to raise money for some very worthy charities that work hard to protect our beautiful landscape,” said Outlaw Partners CEO Eric Ladd.