Brother ali to headline hazelfest 2018 gas x directions


"Brother Ali is an evangelist for love and a powerful preacher of positivity," said local celebrity David Campbell, the former Twin Cities radio DJ who now works for the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation and will emcee HazelFest for the fifth time.

Presented by the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation and sponsored by 89.3 The Current, HazelFest brings together people affected by addiction and the general public to celebrate recovery, spread hope, and smash the stigma associated with substance use disorders and mental illness. Once a year, the quiet campus of the nation’s leading nonprofit provider of addiction treatment and recovery services transforms into a spirited summer bash.

"When you see Brother Ali, you can’t help but be filled with hope for what could be possible if we came together to love ourselves and one another," Campbell said. "That’s a message that resonates with people overcoming addiction and mental illness but also those simply struggling with the everyday challenges of life. I’ve always thought Brother Ali would be the perfect HazelFest headliner, and I’m overjoyed we were able to get him."

This summer’s lineup will be HazelFest’s largest and most diverse, with more than 20 performers, including inspirational speakers and musical acts spanning indie rock, bluegrass, pop, hip hop, jazz, soul, blues and more. Among the many highlights will be a music and storytelling panel curated by Hazelden Betty Ford Artist in Residence Johnny Solomon and his spouse Molly, both of Communist Daughter; it will feature Memphis-based singer-songwriter Mike Doughty, Jennifer and Jessica Claven of the Los Angeles rock band Bleached, and San Diego renaissance man Al Howard, a songwriter, author and founder of the music collective and record label Redwoods Music.

"The entire 2018 lineup features artists with a personal, family or friendship connection to the beauty of clean living and recovery," said event producer, Woody McBride, himself an integral part of the local music scene. "Woven together with great care and electricity, this year’s lineup is poised to feed the soul as well as the ears, quench the soul as well as the summer day. This will be an ultra-talented good-hearted entertainment showcase that is unparalleled."

The Jorgensen Band, a popular Americana soul act, and Journeyman Ink, an inspiring spoken word/musical duo from Dallas, will also perform on the main stage—as will three acclaimed artists—Katy Vernon, Mary Bue and MaLLy—who will make spotlight appearances. New York City comic Evan Williams will make a cameo as well.

New for 2018: two continuous stages of content—the large main stage and a more intimate 500-seat LifeTake2 Stage that will be hosted by Dissonance, a Minnesota nonprofit that facilitates community and conversation around wellness and the arts. The LifeTake2 Stage will conclude with Johnny Solomon’s Artist in Residence showcase and feature other musical acts throughout the day, including Dusty Heart, Tim Patrick and His Blue Eyes Band, and Kim and Quillan Roe of the Roe Family Singers, as well as recovery speaker Roger Bruner and Sandy Swenson, author of Tending Dandelions, a book for moms whose family has been affected by addiction.

"Working in the music business, where we are almost always paid, at least in part, with alcohol and other substances, where it seems engineered to cater to our addictions and destructive lifestyles, it can be really hard to stay sober," said Quillan Roe. "And when we do get sober, we often are left feeling alone. As a musician in recovery, I am really honored to be asked to be a part of HazelFest, a festival that shows us we are not alone in our sobriety, that reinforces our healthy decisions, and that shows that sobriety rocks hard."

This is the sixth year the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation has hosted HazelFest, and it will be the first appearance for award-winning vocalist Tim Patrick and His Blue Eyes Band. "Like many others, my family has been touched deeply by the devastating effects of drug use as it held captive my son for over 10 years," Patrick said. "I feel that I owe a debt to those people who have chosen addiction counseling as their career. They saved my son."

Yoga led by Mary Bue will serenely kick off the event, which will also include kids’ dance parties; comedy and magic shows; some of the area’s best food trucks; many recovery-focused and art exhibitors; a petting zoo; and other fun, family-friendly activities.

"Concerts are about community, and no concert I’ve experienced compares to HazelFest’s powerful ability to bring together a few thousand people who are all present and connected in the moment, having fun and being well together," Campbell said. "I feel like my heart is bigger and my hope is greater when I leave HazelFest every year, and I can’t wait to do it again."

The Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is a force of healing and hope for individuals, families and communities affected by addiction to alcohol and other drugs. It is the nation’s largest nonprofit treatment provider, with a legacy that began in 1949 and includes the 1982 founding of the Betty Ford Center. With 17 sites in California, Minnesota, Oregon, Illinois, New York, Florida, Massachusetts, Colorado and Texas, the Foundation offers prevention and recovery solutions nationwide and across the entire continuum of care to help youth and adults reclaim their lives from the disease of addiction. It includes the largest recovery publishing house in the country, a fully accredited graduate school of addiction studies, an addiction research center, an education arm for medical professionals and a unique children’s program, and is the nation’s leader in advocacy and policy for treatment and recovery. Learn more at and on Twitter @hazldnbettyford.