WALKER -- The fourth Jam at the Moondance Ranch brings its biggest billing of national acts ever, yet still serves a taste of the local music scene.
Along with nationally-known classic rockers the Grass Roots, the Guess Who, Survivor, Starship, featuring Mickey Thomas, and Kansas, local performers Dead Stiks, Ripchord, Bob and Julie, Hands Down and High Tolerance round out Moondance Jam IV.
"Everything is lining up great," said Bill Bieloh, owner of Moondance Ranch and Bieloh's Family Foods in Walker. "We estimate 3,000 to 4,000 people per night and we will have vendors doing everything from food to tattoos, face painting and ear piercing."
Other sidebar events of this year's Jam include a dunking tank sponsored by Ethnic Fest and airplane skywritings.
Jack Thibault and Jack Jordan of TEA Productions from Minnetonka, Minnesota assisted Bieloh in bringing in national acts and organizing the festival.
"I think we've got a great lineup," said Jordan. "I don't know what more people could ask for."
The Guess Who will headline Friday's lineup and perform well-known classics "American Woman," "No Time Left for You," "These Eyes" and "No Sugar Tonight."
Jim Kale, the Guess Who's original bassist and background vocalist, acknowledged that the Guess Who has not performed in Minnesota often, but he said they enjoyed the state.
"We haven't played here a great deal," Kale said. "But the times we did have certainly been a trip. We have played the State Fair and Minneapolis a couple of times when we were younger."
Kale also said the Guess who recently completed a new recording entitled "Liberty," slated for release July 27 of this year.
"It's an eclectic collection of music, which has always been kind of a hallmark of our sound," Kale said. The Guess Who should unveil some of the new songs at Moondance Jam IV.
High Tolerance, formally of Bemidji, plays in Saturday's third slot preceding Survivor.
"It's always a good time warming up for the bigger acts," said Ben Siino, High Tolerance vocalist and percussionist. "We have played concerts like this before, but nothing quite on this level."
High Tolerance mixes their sets with a combination of original and cover power-blues songs. "We play everything from Robert Cray to Santanna," Siino said.
Along with more national acts and the assistance of TEA Productions, this year's Jam features a bigger stage and a better sound system.
Creative Sound and Lights out of Madison, Wisconsin will bring in a $250,000 stage and a Class "A" sound system to accommodate this year's acts.
Tickets for Moondance Jam IV can be purchased for $25 for both days in advance and $20 per day at the gate. Special VIP tickets are also available for $100.