Festival Jam Lineup Set

The lineup for the official opening event of the Smoky Hill River Festival, the SM Hanson Music Festival Jam, is set.

The Festival Jam  is the opening night event of the Smoky Hill River Festival and the highest attended event of the Festival. Attendance for this single night event in 2023 was over 13,000.

The SM Hanson Festival Jam is fast-paced evening of music is fun for all. Four hours of music, with 16 bands playing for 12 minutes. 

According to SM Hanson Music, this year 27 bands applied from Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, and Kansas. 

The selection process and goals are to offer a variety of music from the region.

There are four new bands, three 2nd timers, and a mix of other past performers.

The music changes every 15 minutes on the quarter hour. Quick set changes are possible through the backline equipment and stage staff provided by SM Hanson Music. The musicians get tuned back stage and then the frantic 3 minutes of switching bands begins. 37 years of practice makes this switch-out appear easy.

Here is this year’s lineup:

  • 5:45 To Be Announced. This is a new time spot.
  • 6:00 Visual Lies – New to Festival Jam. Self-described as Hair Metal/80s rock. Based in Lindsborg and ready to rock.
  • 6:15 Downtown Funk – 2023’s invitation band making their 2nd appearance. Salina Central HS jazz and funk band.
  • 6:30 Don Wagner & Friends – Don and friends have a new lineup. Adding a dobro and stand-up bass playing an Americana mix.
  • 6:45 Lix – This is a Salina 4pc band. Playing a mix of classic rock for 40+ years.
  • 7:00 King Tones-  They have played the jam previously, but it has been several years. 4pc band playing blues/rock.
  • 7:15 Jon’Nea Soul 2nd year at the Jam – this Wichita based (Salina connection) 4pc band will play R&B and Soul.
  • 7:30 Hey Radio Wichita based band – a repeat – they promise more energy with a mix of Skate Punk and Pop.
  • 7:45 Soul Preachers –  A Salina 3pc band – playing classic rock
  • 8:00 Drop Everything –  New to the Jam. Scheduled in 2022 as The Box Turtles – lightning ended the show. Based in Manhattan – this 4pc band with a new member lineup and new name will play their mix of Midwest rock
  • 8:15 Kyndred  – This Hays based band played in 2022. A 5pc band is here to Rock a 2nd time – Heavy Metal.
  • 8:30 HyWay 14 – New to Festival Jam. Pretty Prairie is home for this 4pc band. They describe their music as grunge-rock/red-dirt country.
  • 8:45 Bootleg Mercy – Multiple Rock Music award nominations. This 4pc band rocked in 2023 – playing Rock/Grunge
  • 9:00 Dune Buggy  – This talented 5 pc group has years of experience. Their 12 minute set will include Rock & Pop.
  • 9:15 Love Like War – New to Festival Jam. Central Kansas roots – 5pc band playing Alt Rock. Lead singer is known as ‘Chewy’, a  Star Wars thing.
  • 9:30 Steve Hanson & Co. The founder of SM Hanson Music– their 38 th time at the Jam. Always a variety – always great.
  • 9:45 The Blades – A rock/pop/funk band with horns. They have requested a larger stage area for the members (hard to count that high). Always a great end to the SM Hanson Festival Jam

Gates open at 4:00 pm on Thursday June 13th. Music begins at 5:45 with a special-by-invitation band. Wristbands for 12 years and up are your admission.