Emmylou Harris (credit: Last.FM)

Emmylou Harris (credit: Last.FM)

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – Bay Area music fans are getting ready for Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, the popular three-day music festival in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park that is free and open to the public.

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The festival begins Friday with an educational program at 10:30 a.m. featuring MC Hammer and thousands of Bay Area middle school students who will learn about the power of music.

Friday’s headliners include Bonnie Raitt, Conor Oberst and Calexico. Later in the weekend, performers will include Steve Earle, Natalie Maines, Emmylou Harris (pictured) and The String Cheese Incident.

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Hardly Strictly Bluegrass was founded by San Francisco financier and philanthropist Warren Hellman, who died in December 2011.

The festival is continuing even after his death. It takes place in Hellman Hollow, an area of the park named after him, and in Lindley and Marx meadows.

A full schedule of acts and other information about the event can be found online at www.hardlystrictlybluegrass.com.

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