Rebels & Renegades Founders Dan And Amy Sheehan Make Fan Experience And Top-Tier Lineup The Focus Of Second Year Festival

Dan Sheehan Rebels & Renegades country music
Courtesy of Rebels & Renegades

If you’re looking for a more well-balanced, high quality list of performers within all subgenres of country music than what Rebels & Renegades festival is offering in just their second year, good luck finding it.

Much like the way said artists work, including 2023 headliners Turnpike Troubadours and Whiskey Myers, owner Dan Sheehan and his wife Amy, both founders of the festival, look at what they do as a “piece of art,” Dan says.

They actually run six separate festivals in northern California under their Good Vibez Presents umbrella, featuring artists from reggae to country, and started putting festivals on around 2011, mostly within the reggae and hip-hop genres at first.

Dan was raised in Hawaii and was a radio DJ in Guam for a little bit earlier in his career, and says in the last several years, they’ve shifted to the country festival space and focused more on the music that they love to listen to, as their personal playlist comes to life across multiple stages:

“Festivals are fun. We love doing them. There’s obviously a lot of work that goes into it, too. We have 13 full-time employees now that will be around on all of our events…

The goal was hopefully launch another Rebels and Renegades in another market West of the Rockies at some point over the next two years.

That’s kind of how we ended up being the crazy festival people.”

He has a clear passion for not only booking kickass headliners like the aforementioned bands, but digging deeper to fill out the rest of the weekend with equally talented, lesser known country acts that he believes the world needs to hear:

“Discovery is crucial to the longevity of any genre of music.”

Amen to that…

Especially in California, which maybe wouldn’t be the first place that comes to mind when you think of country  music, Dan says they’ve worked hard to introduce new artists to this part of the Golden State:

“This part of California is not necessarily a big tour stop for them, you know. We’re in the development stages of this brand and of this kind of style of music.

Obviously it’s been around forever, but I think California is still getting hip to it, especially this part of California.

And so there’s been a huge buzz and people are stoked about it, but we still have to educate people on buying tickets and where Monterey even is.”

Nestled on the southern edge of the Monterey Bay of California’s Central Coast, it’s a gorgeous place strictly in terms of natural beauty to host a festival, which is certainly part of the draw in making the trek, in addition to the aforementioned lineup.

The part that I love so much about this festival and the way they orchestrate their lineup, which Dan explained is obviously one of the most important parts of the whole event, is that they have an ear to the ground, so to speak, and consider who the fans want to hear and see at the festival, too:

“I think it’s super important to pay attention to what the fans are talking about and what they’re listening to.

From there, I kind of dig into Spotify, which is how I discovered a lot of artists before we were doing Rebels and Renegades.”

To say they put a lot of thought, time and effort into curating a group of acts that are a country music fan’s dream feels like an understatement.

From the southern rock sound of Texas’ Whiskey Myers, to the deep-rooted Red Dirt undertone of the Turnpike Troubadours’ music and even more edgy, alt-pop sensibilities of one of my favorite up-and-comers Morgan Wade, there’s an artist for everyone and plenty more to discover.

Music discovery is pillar of the festival, as Amy and Dan Sheehan see themselves as “core-memory architects,” and Amy says that goes for both artists and fans alike:

“Everyone who walks through our doors is valued. We want everyone to feel as though they are being welcomed into our home for the weekend.

We strive to give artists a hospitable, safe, and comfortable environment where creativity can thrive.

And we work to give fans the coveted you-had-to-be-there memory with every ticket, it’s more than just what or who is on stage; it’s the food, the drinks, the art installations, the commitment to safety, and the friendliness of our staff.”

Just as important as the artists who take the stage to perform throughout the three-day festival is the fans and their experience.

In terms of the technicalities and actual formatting of the festival, it’s a priority for Dan and Amy that fans get to see every artist on the billing — after all, that only seems fair:

“Bands have a minimum of a 45-minute set that doesn’t overlap.”

It simply doesn’t lend to the fan experience to miss live sets of their favorite artists because they had to pick a different one, both of which they paid, and want, to see:

“That’s why we all got into this. Live music is the driving force.

Yeah, we have to make money, and it’s a business, but at the end of the day it’s about the fan experience from the live music and the energy.

It’s a special thing that we’re able to do.”

There is no arguing the importance and magic of live music, and in addition to all of the aspects that make this festival so impressive, the passion Dan has to ensure fans truly enjoy the overall festival experience is at the top of their list.

And he’s discovered some great new artists by putting on Rebels & Renegades, too.

Dan says he was “blown away” with Shane Smith & The Saints during their performance at last year’s inaugural festival, and became a huge fan from that moment on. They’re actually the only repeat act of this year’s lineup, which says everything you need to know about what they bring to a live performance.

Another unique aspect of the festival, which you certainly wouldn’t get in a lot of parts of the country, is that all the artist get “nice jars of weed,” something Dan says they all love and is just one other thing that sets them apart.

Last year’s headliner Cody Jinks even commented on the event as a whole to Dan backstage at the end of the weekend, saying:

“This is the best first-year festival we’ve ever played. “

And it’s slated to be even better this year, with more experience and time under their belt, Dan and Amy look to put on another weekend full of top-tier country music and fun, memorable times to be had by all.

No matter which artists you’re heading there to see, you’ll likely come home with a new favorite musician or song because of the music discovery aspect, which is a success on all accounts for all parties, in my opinion.

Some of The Whiskey Riff crew is also headed to California in October, ready to set you up with all of the gear you will need to look great throughout the festival, so make sure you stop by, say hi and grab a t-shirt or hat at the tent if you’re planning to attend Rebels & Renegades.

I mean, why would you wanna miss out on any of this? It’s going to be a helluva time, and we hope to see you there:

You can see the full lineup below and find more information on purchasing tickets at

Friday, October 6:

Turnpike Troubadours
Old Crow Medicine Show
Morgan Wade
Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway
Flatland Cavalry
The War and Treaty
Brent Cobb
The Steel Woods
Rayland Baxter
Boy Named Banjo
Jamie Wyatt
TK & The Holy Know-Nothings
Danno Simpson

Saturday, October 7:

Whiskey Myers
Charley Crockett
The Devil Makes Three
Paul Cauthen
Kurt Vile & The Violators
The California Honeydrops
Jamestown Revival
Reckless Kelly
Vincent Neil Emerson
JD Clayton
Channing Wilson

Sunday, October 8:

Shakey Graves
Elle King
The Wood Brothers
Sierra Ferrell
Shane Smith & The Saints
Whitey Morgan and the 78’s
The Infamous Stringdusters
American Aquarium
Mike and The Moonpies
Wyatt Flores
Peter One

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock