2024 Double Decker Arts Festival artwork, music lineup revealed
Published 12:33 pm Tuesday, January 30, 2024
Brittany Howard, the former lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist and primary songwriter of Alabama Shakes will be the headliner at this year’s Double Decker Arts Festival.
In 2018, Alabama Shakes announced it was going on hiatus. Afterward, Howard released her debut studio album, “Jaime,” as her first solo artist. The work received critical acclaim and earned her seven Grammy nominations, winning Best Rock Song for “Stay High.”
Taking its name from the town’s authentic double-decker bus imported from England in 1994, the two-day festival is the recipient of more than 25 awards, including the 2022 Best Large Festival by the Mississippi Tourism Association, Best Festival by Mississippi Magazine and a Top 20 event by the Southeast Tourism Society, Double Decker brings in over 75,000 attendees for a weekend celebrating food, music and the arts.
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On Tuesday, Visit Oxford revealed the musical lineup for the festival during a press conference at the University of Mississippi Museum, as well as the festival artwork created by Jules Mikell, an Oxford native.
Mikell’s artwork will appear on festival T-shirts, posters and flagpole banners that will be hung around the downtown Square leading up to the festival.
“I’m very flattered my art has been selected,” Mikell said. “I was born here in Oxford, so I went to Double Decker pretty much my whole life. So it’s very interesting to think in retrospect of me as a little kid waiting in line to get the ticket to ride on the double decker.
The Double Decker Arts Festival is scheduled for April 26-27.
The festival’s 2024 presenting sponsor is the University Museum, which was gifted to them by Ole Miss Athletics. It’s the sixth year Ole Miss Athletics has “purchased” the presenting sponsorship on behalf of the museum.
“There are two sentiments to express – pride to be involved with all of you – the city, Visit Oxford and Ole Miss … It is for us at the museum a genuine honor and privilege,” said museum director Robert Saarnio. “And our gratitude to Athletics for this incredible gesture of support and solidarity on our behalf.”
Juried by a panel of local artists, the artist showcase on Saturday during the festival brings more than 140 arts vendors to the event, spanning a variety of media, including drawings, glass, jewelry, mixed media, painting, photography, print-making and sculpture.
Mayor Robyn Tannehill said Double Decker is an opportunity to celebrate what Oxford does best – music, food and art.
“People ask me that if in 1996 did I ever think the festival would grow to this level and the truth is, I didn’t,” she said. “The one thing I do know, is the reason it’s grown is because of those of you who have invested time and energy in the planning and facilitating and those of you who have sponsored.”
The 2024 Double Decker Arts Festival Musical Lineup
On Friday: Flatland Cavalry, Conner Smith and Grace Bowers
On Saturday: Jamie Wyatt, Billy Allen and the Pollies, Neal Francis, Charlie Mars, Bass Drum of Death, Christone “Kingfish” Ingram and headliner, Howard.
Blue Delta Jeans Company will host their “Blues Delta Blues Alley” in the alley located beside The Lyric.
Before the food, music and art on Saturday, visitors can get a healthy start to their Double Decker day with the annual Spring Run 5K and 10K runs and the Kids Fun Run, presented by Oxford Orthopedics Sports Medicine and the Oxford-Lafayette Chamber of Commerce.
Pam Swain, CEO and president of the chamber, said last year’s race attracted about 1,800 racers. “We expect those numbers to inch toward 2,000,” Swain said.