John Prine, Jim Lauderdale Kick Off MerleFest

John Prine and Jim Lauderdale performed on the main Watson Stage on Thursday night (April 27) to kick off MerleFest 2006 in Wilkesboro, N.C. More than 80,000 people attended the acoustic music festival last year, making it the largest event of its type in the world. This year’s lineup also includes founder Doc Watson, Gillian Welch, the Waybacks featuring Bob Weir, Sam Bush, Robert Earl Keen, Nickel Creek, Emmylou Harris and Béla Fleck & the Flecktones, among dozens more. The festival concludes Sunday (April 30).