More From Newport Folk Festival

Tallest Man On Earth performs at the 2012 Newport Folk Festival. Erik Jacobs for NPR hide caption

toggle caption Erik Jacobs for NPR

The Tallest Man On Earth, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

Folk Alley

Fans overflowed well beyond the point at which they could reasonably be expected to see the singer on stage, as Kristian Matsson blazed through songs from each of his records.

The Tallest Man On Earth, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

Audio is no longer available
Erik Jacobs for NPR

Sharon Van Etten, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

On stage, backed by a full band and ace utility player Heather Broderick, Van Etten alternately exudes quiet confidence, sweet shyness and bold aggression, depending on a given song or moment.

Sharon Van Etten Live From Newport

Audio is no longer available

Gary Clark Jr. plays the Quad Stage at the Newport Folk Festival. Erik Jacobs/Erik Jacobs for NPR hide caption

toggle caption Erik Jacobs/Erik Jacobs for NPR

Gary Clark Jr., Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

Working off a blues-rock template, Clark infuses his gritty songs with soul, pop and even reggae. Don't be stunned if he blossoms into a next-generation blues icon in the next few years.

Gary Clark Jr Live From Newport

Audio is no longer available

Fans, from left, Jenn Spofford, Chrissy Stewart and Suzanna Kopec, all of Providence, R.I., cheer for My Morning Jacket as the band performs on the Fort Stage at the Newport Folk Festival. Erik Jacobs for NPR hide caption

toggle caption Erik Jacobs for NPR

All Songs Considered

Highlights: The 2012 Newport Folk Festival In Photos

See a gallery featuring Wilco, tUnE-yArDs, My Morning Jacket and more from the festival.

Sara Watkins plays the Fort Stage at the Newport Folk Festival. Erik Jacobs/Erik Jacobs for NPR hide caption

toggle caption Erik Jacobs/Erik Jacobs for NPR

Sara Watkins, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

Watkins' new album, Sun Midnight Sun, is a smart, surprising collection of sweetly hooky songs that rest within pop, country and folk on the Venn diagram of musical genres.

Sara Watkins Live From Newport

Audio is no longer available

tUnE-yArDs performs on the Harbor Stage at the Newport Folk Festival. Erik Jacobs for NPR hide caption

toggle caption Erik Jacobs for NPR

tUnE-yArDs, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

Folk Alley

tUnE-yArDs' Leader Merrill Garbus forms a cut-up collage of coos, howls and bold statements of purpose, but her live shows fan out into epic rave-ups, complete with a pair of saxophonists.

tUnE-yArDs Live From Newport

Audio is no longer available

Blind Pilot performs at the 2012 Newport Folk Festival. Douglas Mason hide caption

toggle caption Douglas Mason

Blind Pilot, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

Since expanding from a duo into a sextet, Blind Pilot has given its warmly catchy, charming folk-pop a bit of a kick. The band's albums are stuffed with ringers: It's never released a bad song.

Blind Pilot, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/156924984/157540499" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
Erik Jacobs for NPR

Alabama Shakes, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

In concert, the soulful blues-rock band's music reached ecstatic, rafter-shaking heights. Singer Brittany Howard has the bearing, power and charisma of a star twice her age.

Alabama Shakes, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/156922926/157537880" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Megafaun performs at the Newport Folk Festival. Erik Jacobs for NPR hide caption

toggle caption Erik Jacobs for NPR

Megafaun, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

The North Carolina band has a knack for blending classic-rock traditionalism with a real ear for experimentation. The songs on last year's self-titled album can whisper or rage, meander or kick.

Megafaun, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/156932583/157560202" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

Charles Bradley and His Extraordinaires perform at the Fort Stage at the Newport Folk Festival. Erik Jacobs/Erik Jacobs for NPR hide caption

toggle caption Erik Jacobs/Erik Jacobs for NPR

Charles Bradley, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

As much as Bradley exudes funky, live-wire energy — his years impersonating James Brown weren't wasted — what really fuels his music is perspective: An understanding of hardship infuses every note.

Charles Bradley, Live In Concert: Newport Folk 2012

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/156930985/157566508" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">