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Bluebird on the Mountain Concerts

May 11, 2021 announcement

Hello Bluebird on the Mountain family!

We hope that everyone has been able to stay safe and that you have been able to get out and enjoy the cool spring weather before the infamous Tennessee summer humidity pays us an extended visit! First of all, we at Dyer Observatory and the Bluebird Café want to express our sincere gratitude for how patient each and every one of you has been as we work to figure out what opportunities we will have this season for the Bluebird on the Mountain concert series.  This year has been very challenging because we desperately want to resume our normal activities as soon as possible but also not jump the gun at the risk of everyone’s safety.  We continue to work closely with our colleagues at VU and VUMC to ensure that safety is of utmost importance, and there now appears to be a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel in terms of Covid-19 restrictions at Dyer Observatory.  We are very hopeful that this glimmer will soon grow to become a welcoming beacon.

What we do know at this moment is that we will NOT be hosting a virtual or in-person concert during May.  We were recently notified in a campus-wide announcement that Vanderbilt’s Covid-19 safety protocols and mask requirements on and off campus will remain the same for the time being; however, the university’s Covid-19 safety protocols working group will submit recommendations later this month.  Once we have more information regarding any changes to protocols, we will be better able to set up a plan for this summer and will, of course, provide you with the details as soon as we have them.  If revised restrictions do not permit us to hold a Bluebird on the Mountain concert series at Dyer this year, we will be in contact with you regarding how we will proceed further.

Again, thank you all so much for your unwavering patience and support as we work to finalize our plans.

Billy, Erika, and the Bluebird on the Mountain team


It all started in 2004 with, “Wouldn’t this be a wonderful place to have a concert?!” Standing on the plaza in front of the incredible 1950s building with the giant dome (which houses the Seyfert Telescope) and looking out at the surrounding oak and hickory forest, one can easily get a sense of how special this place would be for listening to talented musicians. On one of the tallest hilltops in Nashville, the concerts are scheduled around glorious sunsets on the portico of the Vanderbilt Dyer Observatory. Guests are encouraged to bring blankets, lawn chairs, food, and drink and relax on the Observatory’s front lawn to enjoy a fabulous evening of sunset, music, and stars. After the performance, when the stars begin to shine, the telescope is opened for visitors to cap their night with views of celestial wonders.

Individual concert tickets are available on the first day of the month prior to the show date at noon (i.e. the Oct 6 concert tickets become available Sept 1 at noon.) Concerts take place May through early October. Please note that tickets sell out quickly. A ticket is for a carload with up to 8 guests. You may reach our ticketing page here.

Buying tips: The event listing will say “Not Yet On Sale” until the tickets go live. Due to the very high volume of people trying to get tickets simultaneously, Eventbrite will likely list the tickets as “unavailable” immediately after release. We recommend that patrons keep trying by continually refreshing their browser windows. When all tickets have been purchased, Eventbrite will then display “Sold Out.”

Your ticket purchase helps support Dyer Observatory’s public outreach efforts. Thank you!


Please have your PRINTED ticket handy to show at the gate and provide the name of the ticket buyer. 

  • Our car passes are just that – one car with up to 8 people per car. We have very limited parking with only room for one parking space for each ticket. Also, we cannot match individuals to group tickets if they arrive separately. Everyone entering on each ticket must do so in a single vehicle.
  • We cannot allow attendees to walk or use rideshares. Cars coming to the top of the hill to drop people off and leave present a safety hazard for there isn’t room to safely turn around with all the traffic and guests unloading their cars.
  • Vanderbilt Police have asked us to remind everyone to please stay in your vehicle until it is parked–for safety reasons.
  • RV’s are not allowed unless special permission has been granted prior to arrival.
  • Please note that Dyer is a forested park-like setting surrounded by Radnor Lake State Park. Bug spray, a blanket or tarp on grass, and avoidance of plants on the perimeter of the yard is highly recommended to avoid tick and other insect bites.
  • You are welcome to bring lawn chairs, blankets, low tables, coolers, food, and beverages–both soft and spiritous. We do not provide seating.
  • No pets are allowed anywhere on the property (including vehicles), but service animals are welcome.
  • A Vanderbilt medic and Vanderbilt police will be on site.
  • As this is Vanderbilt University property, smoking and firearms are not allowed.
  • You and members of your group understand that VU may take photos that include you for social media or other uses, and that VU cannot protect you from being photographed by others.


If the weather forecast appears threatening, please check Dyer Observatory’s main page, our Facebook page @dyerobservers, or our Twitter @dyerobservers. We will make the announcement of any concert changes as early as possible, but do check before coming up. You may need to refresh your web browser to see updates.

Should dangerous weather occur during a concert, public notification at the event will occur when lightning strikes are 12 miles away. The event will be suspended when lightning strikes are within 6 miles of Dyer Observatory. At that time, please evacuate to your vehicle or inside the observatory. The event will continue when the 6 mile perimeter has been lightning free for 30 minutes. If tornadic activity or high winds are threatening, the concert will be cancelled.

Your safety is our priority. We appreciate your cooperation should the unexpected occur.

If Postponement Occurs You will be notified of the new date as soon as it is set. Please check emails, your spam folder, and our website. If you are a single concert ticket holder (not season ticket), you will have the options of transferring your ticket to the new date or getting a refund.

Courtesy of our beverage sponsor Jack Daniel’s, we’ll have a drink sample in the tent out back. Please have a photo ID showing you are 21 or over to try a sample.

Note that sampling will end once the concert starts.

Because we are in a natural area surrounded by Radnor Lake State Park, we urge you to use insect and tick repellent when attending events.


Warm wishes,

Thanks to Amy Kurland and Erika Wollam-Nichols of  Bluebird Cafe fame, we are producing a series of in-the-round style events that have been absolutely wonderful. The performers have included the top songwriters in Nashville.  In 2019, we celebrate our 16th cooperative Bluebird concert season in May and continue monthly through October.  We encourage carloads of people to attend by purchasing a “carload ticket.” Bring up to eight people in your car. No RVs please.

Some of the performers at our music events

Jessi Alexander

Al Anderson

Tony Arata

Greg Barnhill

Billy Adair and The Establishment

Blair School Tuba Ensemble

Blair Brass Quintet

Marc Beeson

Dave Berg

Matraca Berg

Kent Blazy,

Crystal Bowersox

Gary Burr

Shawn Camp

Chuck Cannon

Kim Carnes,

Lionel Cartwright

Craig Carothers,

Brandy Clark

Dana Cooper

Peter Cooper

Commodore Steel Drum Band with Mat Britain

Beth Nielsen Chapman

Marshall Chapman

Ashley Cleveland

Judy Collins,

Barry Dean

Roxie Dean

Bob DiPiero

Tom Douglas

Dave Ellingson

Danny Flowers

Jeff Hanna

Don Henry

Joe Henry

James House

Marcus Hummon

John Jarvis

Jack Tempchin

George Teren

Neil Thrasher

Tricia Walker


S. Kirk Johnson (Jelly Roll)

Jude Johnstone

Tom Kimmel

J. Fred Knobloch

Luke Laird

Tim Lauer

David Lee

Sonny LeMaire

Bill Lloyd

Shane McAnnally

Lori McKenna

Clay Mills

Wendell Mobley

Annie Mosher

Tony Mullins

Tim Nichols

Gary Nicholson

Billy Panda

Gretchen Peters

Grace Pettis

Pierce Pettis

Jim Photoglo

Hugh Prestwood

Jon Randall

Mike Reid

Kim Richey

Annie Roboff

Karyn Rochelle

Rivers Rutherford

Leslie Satcher

Don Schlitz

Thom Schuyler

David Schnaufer

Mark Selby

Jason Sellers

Allen Shamblin

Victoria Shaw

Tia Sillers

Karen Staley

Kenny White

Lari White

Little Texas

A big, giant THANK YOU to every one of them!