Women Take The Spotlight At Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022

May 20, 2022Featured Artists, Reviews

Tico Time?  More like Tica Time!

The Women Take the Spotlight at Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022.

Tico Time Bluegrass Festival took place at Tico Time River Resort RV Park outside of Aztec, NM, May 13 – 15 2022.

Liver Down The River | Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

Emily Winter of Liver Down The River | Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

It’s no secret that women are often unfairly underrepresented in bluegrass music, and at music festivals in general.

In fact, on many festival lineups you’ll have a hard time finding any ladies, let alone headliners.

That wasn’t the case at Tico Time Bluegrass Festival.  Or, Tica Time, as we’re now calling it.


Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

Tico Time Bluegrass Festival was held for the 2nd year at Tico Time River Resort RV Park outside of Aztec, NM.  It’s outside of Durango, and a beautiful drive from the Front Range in CO. We were at last year’s Tico Time Bluegrass Festival and had a blast. Aside from the great location and lineup, it was a family reunion, with many great crews of folks from around Colorado and Durango.  We were excited for the chance to give this party another whirl in 2022.

The festival starts on Thursday, and many folks were there from the get-go.  Making the trek from Boulder, we arrived just in time to catch the last few Willie Watson tunes and then get down to a raucous Chain Station show in the late-night pavilion – a new addition to Tico Time.


On Friday we awoke to a stacked lineup of artists and a beautiful day on the river.

People We Know and Foggy Memory Boys (I can never remember the name of that band for some reason) got things started as we sipped on frozen strawberry margaritas made at our campsite.  (Yeah, it,s an RV resort!)  Jack Cloonan Band played a great set, welcoming Joy Adams to join on cello for a tune, whose band – Big Richard – has the late-night slot.

Then one of our favorites – Lyndsay Pruett and Jon Stickley Trio!

Stickely Trio is always a fantastic show, and a huge reason is Lyndsay “Just” Pruett on fiddle. She captivated the Friday afternoon crowd as she always does, along with Jon Stickley’s mind-breaking licks and Hunter Deacon laying it down on the drums.

As the sun set, Liver Down The River took over the party.  Tico Time Bluegrass might as well be a Liver Fest, with Patrick Storen being a driving force behind the scenes.  Liver threw down, and Emily Winter led the charge, commanding the stage with her fiddle playing, confidently daring everyone to match her.



Lyndsay Pruett | Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

This Is How We Pruett!

Lyndsay Pruett of Jon Stickley Trio | Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

PJ Moon had a couple of nice tweener sets at the Pickin’ Pavillion, and then The ‘Lil Smokies closed down the main stage with an awesome show, including a moving “In Your Eyes” cover from the Rev that gave us all the feels.

As the ‘Smokies closed, there was palpable excitement for the late-night show, and most didn’t waste any time getting to the Pavillion to catch the start of Big Richard.

If you’ve been under a rock you might not have heard of Big Richard yet.  They’ve been getting booked on some big stages, including this summer’s Telluride Bluegrass Festival and the next Strings & Sol and JamCruise.

With all this hype, we had pretty high expectations for Big Richard, as did the crowd, who arrived early and excited for a late-night throwdown.  Big Richard came out swinging.  Along with the aforementioned Joy Adams, Bonnie Sims, Emma Rose and Eve Panning blew our expectations through the roof.  Lyndsay Pruett joined in for a powerful version of Drivin’ Nails In My Coffin and it was clear that the ladies were having their say at Tica Time Bluegrass Festival.

Chris Thompson & Friends warmed up the Saturday afternoon crowd, and as the temps climbed the waterslide saw more action.  Saturday afternoon also treated us to some great sets from Hunker Down and High Country Hustle before the legendary Tim O’Brien and Jan Fabricius brought us into the early evening.

Sandwiched by some really fun tweener sets from Derek Dames Ohl and friends, Trout Steak Revival and the incredibly talented Bevin Foley got the crowd moving and ready Saturday Night!


Trout Steak Revival |Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

Bevin Foley and Trout Steak Revival | Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

Then came a ridiculous Grant Farm set during which I was reminded that every time I see Grant Farm, I think they might actually be the best band in the world.

The energy was high and Tico Time was ready to dump it out for Saturday Night!

We couldn’t have asked for a better Saturday Night festival throwdown than the one delivered by Tara Rose & the Real Deal.  As her band danced around her, going head to head on covers and originals, Tara led the party and owned the room.  Often joined by Patrick Storen and Emily Winter, there was as much fun going around the stage as in the crowd (although unfortunately possibly fewer beers.)  As the band played beyond the Midnight Hour, Tara concluded by warning us that this was just the warm-up for the evening of campground pickin’ to come. 

Hide your coolers! Hide your wives!  

Trout Steak Revival |Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

Hide Your Coolers!  Hide Your Wives!  It’s the Real Deal Mama Tara Rose!

Tara Rose & The Real Deal | Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

As Tara Rose warned, the party went beyond the wee hours, fueled in part by fried chicken, ramen and macaroons.  (We told you, it’s a resort!)

Sunday morning was a slow start for many, but the perfect recipe to get the day started was Elle Michelle’s Grateful Holler.  Elle Michelle and her band led a feel good set of Grateful Dead tunes, along with some John Hartford and even a cover of Billy Strings‘ “Dust in a Baggie,” a shout out to all of us choosing this river reunion over the coinciding Red Rocks party.

Elle Michelle's Grateful Holler |Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

Elle Michelle’s Grateful Holler w/ Emily Winter | Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

Sunday continued to pour it on with Floodgate Operators, followed by a Buffalo Commons beach party that had everyone smiling.   Things came to a close with Wood Belly, whose energy easily made us forget it was Sunday night.

The party continued throughout the resort, and everyone stopped to awe at the Super Blood Moon Lunar Eclipse.


As the fiery moon glowed above the mountains framing the horizon, we all marveled at the amazing weekend that it was.

While there were certainly plenty of incredible performances all around, it was the women of Tico Time that truly held the torch.

The moon goddess looked down upon Tica Time as we closed out an amazing weekend of music, love, and hope.


In a frightening time when women are still forced to fight for a voice, it was encouraging to see what can be achieved when they are standing in the spotlight, making the rules, swinging their Big Richards at will.


Tico Time Bluegrass Festival 2022 | Festy GoNuts

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About The Author


Jason has been in love with the festy lifestyle ever since his first festival experience, The Great Went in August of 1997. Whew. That was a while ago. Jason loves the way festivals free us from the constraints of the outside world, and let us be our true "fest" selves!

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