The Woodford Files: Moochers Inc.

The wonderful Woodford Folk Festival kicks off on the Sunshine Coast hinterland in a magical kingdom called Woodfordia on Saturday 27 December 2014, and ends in a fiery extravaganza on the evening of Thursday 1 January 2015.

If you’ve not experienced Woodford before, then don’t delay. There’s still time to kennel the cat, grab your significant other, and point the wagon train north to Caboolture* and peel off left. Or south to Palmview and peel off to the right past Beerwah.

Ok, I could keep going but you’ve probably got Google Maps too, so you can keep playing at home if you like.

This is the first in a series of interviews, vignettes**, features and story-ettes that will seek to entice you off the couch and away from the Boxing Day Test to a sport far more interactive (and you can get in on the cricket action with the Woodford XI).

OR if geographically, monetarily, fiscally-responsibly***, or familyscomeoverfromSweden-ly you’re not able to, you can pull up a bean bag, grab a bag of Smith’s Chips and a Passiona and tune in for a Christmas and New Year of music, song, dance, spoken word, art, community, and probably a shipload of rain and mud OR stinking heat and 40+ degree external saunas.

Me, I personally take Woodfordia in all its many-splendoured glories. If life sends you a baking sidewalk, cook eggs and bacon. (I was never into lemons or lemonade.)

First cab off the rank is a wonderfully fun, fast and very toight outfit from Canberra called Moochers Inc. As Rafe Morris says in the interview, they’re a band for dancing, singing and drinking with — during the show, and before and after if the mood takes you and them.

Warning: jazz students sitting in the first row trying to follow the complex chord progressions, you may have your view impeded by writhing, sweaty, beautiful young dancing bodies. Which can’t be a bad thing. I’d jump right in, if I were you.

I probably will.

Gig dates and times for The Moochers Inc. at Woodford:

Sunday 28 December, 5pm – Parlour
Tuesday 30 December, 5.30pm – Bluestown
Wednesday 31 December, 1.05am – Parlour
Thursday 1 January, 12 noon – Bluestown (Old Timey Concert)


* ‘North To Caboolture’ is the original song title until ‘Spud’ McGinty fell on hard times, actually did lose the bottom out of his tweeds, and sold the rights to the US where ‘Alaska’ was chosen as it scanned better.

** If you are trying one of our vignettes, I recommend the saucier’s favourite which is a white wine ‘Inclination’ fusion with Aldi’s finest $2.69 range. Actually, it’s just gone up to $2.79. Zut alors!

*** Inset your own devastatingly edgy political joke with a gratuitous GFC reference.


Thank Folk It’s Friday – 24th October


This Week in Folk

All the News From The Week That Was

- The Woodford Folk Festival dropped its massive 2014 lineup including Violent Femmes (USA), The Cat Empire, Archie Roach, Nahko and Medicine for the People (USA), Jeff Lang, Lau (SCOT), Tiny Ruins (NZ), We Two Thieves, Shooglenifty (SCOT), Flap!, Husky, Lior, Mama Kin, Siskin River, Andrew Clermont, The Mae Trio, Fred Smith, Lucy Wise Trio, Oh Pep!, Betty & Oswald, The Company and so so so much more. Details here

- The Staves released their latest video “Blood I Bled”. Details here

- The National Folk Festival revealed its first six 2015 artists including Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haas, Mark Moldre, Gordie MacKeeman and his Rhythm Boys, Fred Smith, Chloë and Jason Roweth and Dark Horses. Details here

- The Port Fairy Folk Festival have added Buffy Sainte-Marie and Richard Thompson to their 2015 lineup. Details here

- Another festival to reveal its lineup this week was the Illawarra Folk Festival who added to the likes of Afenginn, Eric Bogle, Ted Egan, Big Erle, The Bottlers, The BordererS, Chloë and Jason Roweth, Claude Hay, Cloudstreet, Fred Smith, The Go Set, Lime & Steel, The Lurkers, The Mae Trio, Margaret & Bob Fagan, Martin Pearson, The Morrisons, Sparrow-Folk, Stray Hens, Takadimi, Timothy James Bowen and many more to its 2015 program. Details here

- Passenger released his brand new video “27”. Details here

- The new track from Caitlin Park, “Hunt for the Young” featuring Aidan Roberts (The Maple Trail) now has a brand new video. Details here

- Sydney indie-folk band Georgia Fair have announced a handful of shows for November. Details here

- UK based singer-songwriter Hattie Briggs released her new video “Share Your Heart”. Details here

- Perth’s Joel Barker gives us a laugh with his new video “Casual Batman”. Details here

- Blue Mountains roots trio Eddie Boyd and The Phatapillars have announced a massive national tour from next week. Details here

- Lachlan Bryan and Harmony James have announced a joint tour this November. Details here

- The October edition of Little Features takes place tomorrow night and will feature The Bon Scotts, Ella Fence, Ollie Brown and more. Details here

- The Wilson Pickers are reuniting for a series shows in Victoria this November. Details here

- The Bearded Gypsy Band will be touring their new EP Leaving Town this November and December. Details here


“I’m from a place called Lyttelton which is just outside of Christchurch. It’s a town of about 3,000 people but per capeta it’s got the most country music of any place I’ve ever been to. Inexplicably – I don’t know why there would be country music there. Before we had the earthquakes there were about six or seven really good venues in a town of 3,000. Now there’s two or three”Marlon Williams chats to Gareth Hugh Evans. Interview here

Releases This Week

Eddie Berman
PolyhymniaEddie Berman

Jep and Dep
Word Got OutJep and Dep

Lanie Lane
Night ShadeLanie Lane

Buckles & BruisesPepperjack

The Staves
Blood I BledThe Staves

Timber and Steel Recommends – Go To This Gig

Country & Inner Western feat. Shane Nicholson, Jenny Queen, Ruby Boots, Andy Golledge, The Morrisons

Country and Inner Western

The Country & Inner Western nights in Sydney have become legendary, with some of the countries best and brightest folk, alt-country and Americana artists getting together for one big jam session. This time around Shane Nicholson, Jenny Queen and Ruby Boots, Andy Golledge will take to the stage with local Sydney legends The Morrisons playing ad jamming throughout the night.

Wednesday 29th October – GoodGod Small Club, Sydney, NSW

Gigs Next Week

All Our Exes Live In Texas
Friday 24th October – Newtown Social Club, Sydney, NSW
Saturday 25th October – Katoomba RSL, Blue Mountains, NSW
Sunday 26th October – Front Gallery, Canberra, ACT

Buby Marou
Friday 24th October – Kidgeeridge Music Festival, Conjola, NSW (Full Band)
Saturday 25th October – Sydney Blues & Roots Festival, Windsor, NSW (Full Band)
Thursday 30th October – Byron Theatre, Byron Bay, NSW
Friday 31st October – Armidale Club, Armidale, NSW

Caitlin Park
Saturday 25th October – The Newtown Social Club, Sydney, NSW

Country & Inner Western feat. Shane Nicholson, Jenny Queen, Ruby Boots, Andy Golledge, The Morrisons
Wednesday 29th October – GoodGod Small Club, Sydney, NSW

C.W. Stoneking
Friday 31st October – The Hi-Fi, Brisbane, QLD

Dorrigo Folk & Bluegrass Festival
Friday 24th to Sunday 26th October – Dorrigo, NSW

Eddie Boyd and The Phatapillars
Thursday 30th October – Some Velvet Morning, Clifton Hill, VIC
Friday 31st October – The Crown and Sceptre, Adelaide, SA

Festival of Small Halls feat. Andy Brown, The Mae Trio
Friday 31st October – Isisford, QLD

Fred Smith
Saturday 25th October – Dorrigo Folk and Bluegrass Festival, Dorrigo, NSW

Jack Carty
Thursday 30th October – Babushka Lounge, Ballarat, VIC

JamGrass Music Festival
Friday 31st October to Sunday 2nd November – Thornbury Theatre, Melbourne, VIC

Jep and Dep
Friday 24th October – Birdhouse, Wagga Wagga, NSW
Saturday 25th October – The Retreat Hotel, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 31st October – Junk Bar, Brisbane, QLD

Katie Noonan, Angie Hart, Melody Pool, Sam Buckingham
Thursday 30th October – Artbar, Perth, WA

Lanie Lane
Wednesday 29th October – Corner Hotel, Melbourne, VIC
Thursday 30th October – Newtown Social Club, Sydney, NSW
Friday 31st October – Anita’s, Wollongong, NSW

Little Features feat. The Bon Scotts, Ella Fence, Ollie Brown
Saturday 25th October – Hibernian House, Sydney, NSW

Liz Stringer
Friday 31st October – Basement Discs In Store, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 31st October – The Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine, VIC

Mark Moldre
Thursday 30th October – Quattro, Erina, NSW

Mark Wilkinson
Sunday 26th October – The Grand Poobah, Hobart, TAS
Friday 31st October – Heritage Hotel, Bulli, NSW

Missy Higgins
Saturday 25th October – AEC – Theatre, Adelaide, SA
Wednesday 29th October – Regent Theatre, Melbourne, VIC

Nikki Lane and The Delines with Ruby Boots
Friday 24th October – Meeniyan Town Hall, Meeniyan, VIC

Oh Pep!
Thursday 30th October – Yarra Hotel, Abbotsford, VIC

One Up, Two Down and Dan Parsons
Friday 24th October – The Junk Bar, Brisbane, QLD
Saturday 25th to Sunday 26th October – Dorrigo Folk And Bluegrass Fest, NSW
Tuesday 28th October – Mother’s Milk, Coffs Harbour, NSW
Wednesday 29th October – Newcastle Uni, Newcastle, NSW
Thursday 30th October – Clarendon Guest House, Katoomba, NSW
Friday 31st October – Tanswells Hotel, Beechworth, VIC

Out on the Weekend
Sunday 26th October – The Brightside, Brisbane, QLD

Sahara Beck
Friday 24th October – The Jive, Adelaide, SA
Saturday 25th October – Babushka, Ballarat, VIC
Saturday 1st November – The Wesley Anne, Melbourne, VIC

Sam Newton
Friday 24th October – The Family Hotel, Tamworth, NSW
Saturday 25th October – Belongil Treehouse, Byron Bay, NSW
Wednesday 29th October – The Lass O’Gowrie, Newcastle, NSW
Thursday 30th October – The Great Northern Hotel, Newcastle, NSW
Friday 31st October – Roundabout Inn, Gloucester, NSW

Steve Smyth
Sunday 26th October – The Wollombi Tavern, Wollombi, NSW
Friday 31st October – Newtown Social Club, Sydney, NSW

Sydney Blues and Roots Festival
Thursday 23rd to Sunday 26th October – Windsor, NSW

Tattletale Saints
Friday 31st October to Sunday 2nd November – JamGrass, Melbourne, VIC
Wednesday 5th November – Araluen Town Hall, Araluen, NSW
Thursday 6th November – The Front Gallery and Café, Canberra, ACT
Friday 7th November – The Newsagency, Sydney, NSW

The Acfields
Saturday 25th to Sunday 26th October – Tablelands Folk Festival, Atherton, QLD
Thursday 30th October – Cafe Le Monde, Noosa, QLD
Friday 31st October – Rainbow Beach Hotel, Rainbow Beach, QLD

The Gloaming
Saturday 25th October – Hamer Hall, Melbourne, NSW
Monday 27th October – Sydney Opera House, Sydney, NSW

The Perch Creek Family Jugband
Friday 24th October – The Substation, Newport, VIC
Saturday 25th October – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine, VIC

The Pierce Brothers
Friday 24th October – 170 Russell, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday 25th October – Swagger Music Festival, Mountain View Hotel, Wandiligong, VIC
Friday 31st October – Railway Club, Darwin, NT

Friday Folk Flashback

“The Ballad of ’75” – Roaring Jack

There have been a lot of musical tributes to the late Gough Whitlam this week, many featuring “From Little Things Big Things Grow” from Paul Kelly and Kev Carmody and of course “Gough” by The Whitlams. I thought I’d add this Roaring Jack/Alistair Hulett classic to the mix. Maintain your rage and enthusiasm!

The Woodford Folk Festival Drops 2014 Lineup

Image Courtesy of Lau

There were a ton of folk festival announcements all over the weekend but the one that everyone is talking about is the 2014 Woodford Folk Festival lineup. The full musical program dropped yesterday with the usual mix of folk, roots, trad, singer-songwriter and I-don’t-know-why-they’re-at-a-folk-festival artists.

The lineup itself is too huge to list here (you can see it for yourself here) but the highlights include the likes of Violent Femmes (USA), The Cat Empire, Archie Roach, Nahko and Medicine for the People (USA), Jeff Lang, Lau (SCOT), Tiny Ruins (NZ), We Two Thieves, Shooglenifty (SCOT), Flap!, Husky, Lior, Mama Kin, Siskin River, Andrew Clermont, The Mae Trio, Fred Smith, Lucy Wise Trio, Oh Pep!, Betty & Oswald, The Company and so so so much more.

The Woodford Folk Festival takes place from the 27th December to the 1st January. For more information including how to get your hands on tickets check out the official site here.

Stream Ùrlar, the New Album by Breabach

Image Courtesy of Breabach

If you’ve seen the upcoming WOMADelaide and Woodford Folk Festival lineups you’ll have seen that award winning Scottish trad five-piece Breabach will be in the country very very soon. And while they’re here they’ll be touring their new album Ùrlar which has been recently released online.

Ùrlar was produced by Kris Drever and can be picked up via the Breabach’s Bandcamp page. Stream Ùrlar as well as watching the album trailer below:

Thank Folk It’s Friday – 25th October


This Week in Folk

All the News From The Week That Was

- The week kicked off with over 500 artists being announced for this year’s Woodford Folk Festival. Details here

- WOMADelaide also added eleven new artists to its 2014 lineup including Timber and Steel favourite Sam Lee and Scottish trad specialists Breabach. Details here

- Sydney indie-folk night Little Features have announced their October lineup including Hushka, Colin Jones, Little Bighorn and Jacob Pearson. Details here

- Bluesfest announced their third lineup additions for 2014 including Jack Johnson, Elvis Costello, Passenger and Kasey Chambers. Details here

- We posted the full lineup for the Kangaroo Valley Folk Festival which kicks off today. Details here

- Busby Marou revealed their new video “Get You Out Of Here”. Details here

- Australian-born, Berlin-based folk-pop singer Phia has released her new single “Do You Ever?”. Details here

- Another festival to announce its 2014 lineup is Golden Plains 8, whose folky artists include Neko Case, The Orbweavers, Archer and the Long Gone Daddies and The Perch Creek Family Jugband. Details here

- Patrick James has revealed a brand new track “Wait” ahead of his Spring tour. Details here

- Dustin Tebbutt, who is heading out on tour with Boy & Bear, has revealed his new video “Where I Find You” from his new EP The Breach. Details here

- Timber and Steel has an exclusive stream of “Streets”, the new EP from Isaac de Heer that is officially released today. Details here

- Emma Davis released her new single “Stand Tall” and announced an east coast tour with Brian Campeau in November. Details here

- Sydney’s The Mountains have announced their last headline show for 2013 with Edward Deer and Direwolf. Details here

- Daughter have announced Laneway sideshows next year. Details here

- The Sydney Festival announced its 2014 lineup including a bunch of folk acts like Chris Thile, The Staves, Dom Flemons and more. Details here

- Midlake released their brand new video “Antiphon”. Details here

- On the 21st November Timber and Steel will be presenting a very special night of music featuring Boy Outside, The British Blues and All Our Exes Live In Texas. Details here


“I just don’t think we worked out what we were trying to do with Cherbourg. I think we learnt a lot of lessons from it. It was quite a set formula with Cherbourg and I think we’re all multi-instrumentalists in Bear’s Den and it allows us to be a lot more fluid with the sort of sounds we can make and what we choose to do with them” – Kev Jones from Bear’s Den chats to Gareth Hugh Evans. Interview here

Releases This Week

Wild Heart
Wild HeartBec Sandridge

Isaac De Heer Streets
StreetsIsaac de Heer

The Head and the Heart
Let’s Be StillThe Head And The Heart

Timber and Steel Presents

Saturday 26th October – Festival at Mezzanine Styles, Parkes, NSW
Sunday 27th October – Balcony TV, Coolum Beach, QLD

Gigs Next Week

Boy & Bear
Friday 25th October – Enmore Theatre, Sydney, NSW
Sundey 27th October – Enmore Theatre, Sydney, NSW
Friday 1st November – Wool Exchange, Geelong, VIC

Busby Marou
Friday 25th October – The Hi-Fi, Brisbane, QLD
Saturday 26th October – The Spotted Cow, Toowoomba, QLD

Caitlin Rose
Friday 25th October – The Basement, Sydney, NSW

Saturday 26th October – Hamer Hall, Melbourne, VIC
Monday 28th October – City Hall, Brisbane, QLD
Wednesday 30th October – State Theatre, Sydney, NSW
Friday 1st November – Astor Theatre, Perth, WA

Dorrigo Folk and Bluegrass Festival
Friday 25th to Sunday 27th October – Dorrigo, NSW

Dyson Stringer Cloher
Friday 25th October – The Sound Lounge, Currumbin, QLD
Saturday 26th October – Judith Wright Centre, Brisbane, QLD
Sunday 27th October – Woombye Pub, Eumundi, QLD
Thursday 31st October – Byron Bay Brewery, Byron Bay, NSW
Friday 1st November – Panthers, Port Macquarie, NSW

Fleurieu Folk Festival
Friday 25th to Sunday 27th October – Willunga, SA

Foghorn Stringband
Friday 25th to Sunday 27th October – Dorrigo Folk and Bluegrass Festival, NSW
Tuesday 29th October – Kyogle Memorial Institute Hall, Kyogle, NSW
Thursday 31st October – Lizotte’s, Kincumber, NSW
Friday 1st November – Illawarra Folk Club, Wollongong, NSW
Friday 1st November – The Front Gallery, Canberra, ACT

Jordie Lane
Friday 25th to Saturday 26th October – Fleurieu Folk Festival, SA
Sunday 27th October – Fremantle Arts Centre, Fremantle, WA (Afternoon show)
Sunday 27the October – Ellington Jazz Club, Perth, WA
Thursday 31st October – Spotted Cow, Toowoomba, QLD
Friday 1st November – Black Bear Lodge, Brisbane, QLD

Kangaroo Valley Folk Festival
Friday 25th to Sunday 27th October – Kangaroo Valley, NSW

Lachlan Bryan
Sunday 27th October – Grand Junction Hotel, Maitland, NSW
Thursday 31st October – Eatons Hill Hotel, Brisbane, QLD
Friday 1st November – Burleigh Underground Drummers, Gold Coast, QLD

Little Features feat. Hushka, Colin Jones, Little Bighorn, Jacob Pearson
Saturday 26th October – Hibernian House, Sydney, NSW

Matt Corby with Bear’s Den
Sunday 27th October – Arts centre, Fremantle, WA

Perch Creek Family Jugband
Friday 25th October – The Polish Club, Canberra, ACT
Saturday 26th October – City Diggers, Wollongong, NSW
Sunday 27th October – The Vanguard, Sydney, NSW

Sam Buckingham and Buffalo Tales
Wednesday 30th October – Royal Exchange Theatre, Newcastle, NSW
Thursday 31st October – The Rhythm Hut, Gosford, NSW
Friday 1st November – Venue 505, Sydney, NSW

The Crooked Fiddle Band
Friday 25th October – Small Ballroom, Newcastle, NSW
Friday 1st November – Sol Bar, Sunshine Coast, QLD

The Little Stevies
Friday 25th October – The Velvet Room, Melbourne, VIC

Friday 25th October – Bendigo Bank Theatre, Bendigo, VIC
Saturday 26th October – A Day On The Green, Mudgee, NSW
Sunday 27th October – Ed Castle, Adelaide, SA

Friday Folk Flashback

“Forever Young” – Joan Baez

Proof that my wife has far better music taste than me – this song was playing in our house the other day and I had to ask her what it was

The Woodford Folk Festival Announce 2013 Lineup

Woodford Folk Festival
Image Courtesy of The Woodford Folk Festival

Over the weekend The Woodford Folk Festival revealed its 2013 program and it’s pretty darn impressive. With over 500 artists announced in 28 venues over six days Woodford 2013 is arguably Australia’s biggest and most diverse folk festival.

The festival doesn’t really have headliners as such but we’ve spotted a bunch of international and Australian Timber and Steel favourites including Bearded Gypsy Band, Beth Orton, Buffalo Tales, Busby Marou, Castlecomer, Clare Bowditch, Darren Hanlon, Jordie Lane, Rose Cousins, Matt Corby, Sam Amidon, The Crooked Fiddle Band, The Quarry Mountain Dead Rats, The Twoks, Andrew Winton, Claude Hay, Hat Fitz & Cara, Whitetop Mountaineers, Andrew Clermont, Andy Irvine, Spooky Men’s Chorale, Thelma Plum and many many more.

The Woodford Folk Festival takes place from the 27th December to 1st January. Tickets are available now – for more information including the full program visit the official site here.

The Festival of Small Halls Kicks off In Australia This November

Jordie Lane and Rose Cousins
Image Courtesy of The Festival in Small Halls

Ever since Fanny Lumsden embarked on her first Country Halls tour last year we’ve been wondering why more artists don’t make use of the small halls dotted all over Australia. Well it looks like someone’s been listening to our thoughts (not paranoid at all) with the first ever Festival in Small Halls kicking off this November.

The Festival in Small Halls aims to take the best folk and contemporary artists, one local and one international from the Mullum Music Festival and the Woodford Folk Festival and send them on the road to play community halls around the country. The first Festival of Small Halls tour will feature local troubadour Jordie Lane teaming with Canadian folkie Rose Cousins and will run through halls in Queensland. The tour will kick off at the Mullum Music Festival and finish up at the Woodford Folk Festival. Check out the full list of dates below:

Saturday 23rd November – St Martins Parish Hall, Mullum Music Festival, NSW
Wednesday 27th November – Forest Hill School of Arts, Forest Hill, QLD
Friday 29th November – Sandgate Town Hall, Sandgate, QLD
Saturday 30th November – Wolvi and District Hall, Wolvi, QLD
Sunday 1st December – Eudlo Hall, Eudlo, QLD
Thursday 5th December – Eulo Hall, Eulo, QLD
Saturday 7th December – St George Amphitheatre, St George, QLD
Sunday 8th December – Mitchell Shire Hall, Mitchell, QLD
Wednesday 11th December – Charleville Town Hall, Charleville, QLD
Thursday 12th December – Barcaldine Town Hall, Barcaldine, QLD
Friday 13th December – Capella Cultural Centre, Capella, QLD
Saturday 14th December – Springsure Town Hall, Springsure, QLD
Sunday 15th December – Pinnacle Playhouse, Pinnacle, QLD
Wednesday 18th December – Wallaville Hall, Wallaville, QLD
Friday 20th December – Degilbo Hall, Degilbo, QLD
Saturday 21st December – Boonarga Cactoblastis Hall, Chinchilla, QLD
Sunday 22nd December – Mt Mee Public Hall, Mt Mee, QLD
Saturday 28th December – Concert Stage, Woodford Folk Festival, QLD

The New Year Conundrum

Every year as the calendar days roll by, friends and family start asking the inevitable questions about what you are doing for Christmas and New Year. In the past, there has been a good range of folk friendly festivals stretching up and down the East Coast of Australia for eager punters to choose from, but with the demise of both Pyramid Rock Festival and Peats Ridge Festival, it shrinks the obvious choices down to Woodford Folk Festival and The Falls Festival (which has conveniently added a new venue/ location for the 2013/14 event).

But, what if you’re not after a big and busy festival for your New Year’s celebrations? Well, let’s take a look at what’s on offer, both the big guns and the ones you might not have come across yet.

Woodford Folk Festival – Woodford, QLD

Woodford Cart

Undeniably one of the largest festivals in Australia, it has been repeatedly nominated for all kinds of awards in the events and tourism industries and remains one of my favourite festivals of all time, even if only for a 35 hour experience, I’d love to go back (but sadly, not this year). Based on their own site (Woodfordia, about one hour north of Brisbane), The Queensland Folk Federation have delivered outstanding line ups year after year and offer a range of musical acts and arts activities for all ages making this festival easy for the whole family to attend. While this year’s line up hasn’t yet been announced, we would put money on it being another outstanding list of great musicians from around the world, a quick glance through the 2012/13 programme book will attest to that.

Tickets and camping are still available at pre-festival web prices up until Christmas Eve, or if you’re feeling the pinch, they are always looking for willing volunteers who gain free entry in return for their help before, during or after the festival. Highlights of Woodford, apart from the amazing line up (in which we would name almost ever artist we’ve covered on  Timber and Steel if we were to list past festival performers), includes the huge range of workshops, crafts and activities for all ages to participate in, the exciting range of food and stalls available on site, the breathtaking lantern parade and the penultimate fire event bringing in the New Year. Completely safe for the whole family with plenty for the young and young at heart, if you haven’t been to Woodford, it is probably the festival I would tell everyone to go to no matter what their musical leaning. Don’t believe me? Check out their latest promo video:

The Falls Festival – Lorne Vic, Marion Bay Tas and Byron Bay NSW

Falls Festival, Lorne, 2008, Music Festival

Now, before I get you all excited, tickets for two of the three sites have sold out, tickets are now only available for Marion Bay in Tasmania. So, for those of you already with tickets to Lorne or Byron Bay, I’m only going to be reaffirming your excellent choice in festival for the New Year period. I went along for the 2011/12 festival in Lorne Vic and discovered an experience I had not anticipated, it was so big it required multiple small reviews, no single post could encapsulate it all. 2013 is the first year they’ve expanded to Byron Bay (which has successfully hosted Splendor in the Grass and nearby is the home of Bluesfest) so there is no hesitation that a New Year’s festival will have any trouble in such esteemed company.

Just like Woodford, The Falls Festival is not just a music festival, it has a vast array of arts workshops and experiences to keep every punter engaged no matter their hangover or musical interests, from themed days and fiesta’s through to art attacks. For those thinking still and wondering about Marion Bay, we can confirm it is a kid friendly event meaning, like Woodford, the whole family can come along and enjoy the line up.

Speaking of line ups, since The Falls Festival is not exclusively a folk festival, it means the artists cover a range of styles but still features some of our favourites including Emma Louise, Gossling, Grizzly Bear, Neil Finn, The Cat Empire, The Paper Kites, The Preachers and a whole lot more that we’d love to check out live. For the full line up, visit the listing on their website.

If you’re heading to the Byron Bay site and haven’t decided whether to camp, glamp or swag it, all the accomodation options are available on the Falls Festival travel page including the incredibly groovy Tepee Life village (Tepee Life also available in Marion Bay).

And if the idea of heading to Tasmania isn’t immediately appealing, just pause for a moment to consider the great adventure you could embark on. Not only do you get to head to one of the most pristine and beautiful forest areas within Australia and see some of the best acts around (including voting by Oct 31 in the Foster A Band competition to choose a local band to grace the stage), you can also take advantage of the 29 December start date to have an adventure around Hobart and broader Tasmania before bringing in the New Year!

If you’re struggling to decide, or wish you’d got a ticket to Lorne or Byron Bay, don’t despair, there are a few more options including applying for an Art Camp at any of the three sites to create the artistic heart and soul of the festival, and includes a coveted ticket to the festival. If you’re not so artistically inclined, but don’t mind a bit of work, volunteer applications are still open for Marion Bay.

Now, I move out of my comfort zone to two festival’s I’ve never been to!

Gulgong Folk Festival - Gulgong NSW

Dancing Gulgong Folk Festival by Flickr member farmgrovePhoto courtesy of Flickr member farmgrove

Technically not actually a New Year’s festival, the Gulgong Festival (which Gareth enjoyed earlier this year) takes place over the weekend immediately prior, 28 and 29 December 2013, making it a good option for those who have to work those pesky week days between the public holidays – if you’re in NSW and can manage a drive out to Gulgong that is. However, it’s also a great option for people that want a folky fix AND their big city New Year’s party as you could manage both pretty easily. If a nice jaunt out to Mudgee isn’t tempting enough, what if I told you tickets were free? I kid you not.

There’s no obvious camping options unless you seek out a camping ground but their website does list a number of motels and accommodation options, and really who doesn’t like a trip out in to the countryside and a good B&B to see you through?

Again, their line up is not announced yet, but with past acts like Jack Carty, The Falls, Mustered Courage, April Maze, we’re pretty confident it will be an impressive selection. A little birdy has shared some inside information that Daniel Champagne, Melanie Horsnell, Alan Caswell, Big Erle and Matt Southon may well make appearances *nudge, nudge, wink, wink*

Nariel-Creek Folk Festival – Nariel Creek Vic

Vendulka performing at the Nariel-Creek Folk FestivalVendulka on stage. Photo courtesy of Nariel-Creek Folk Festival

A beaut little festival in regional Victoria (North East for those playing at home) which looks to be the kind of scale of The Gum Ball or Corinbank and equally delightful feel for all the family. They went simple in their online presence – a facebook page only, having pulled down their website earlier in the year. Tickets are cheap at $20 a head and available at the door, camping is an incredibly low $5/ night and you can turn up early and stay late if you really want. No idea who is on their bill, but in honesty, it just looks like an amazing and relaxed way to spend a New Year’s, especially if you want to avoid the crowds! Plus there is ample opportunity to dress up for the fun of it with plenty of great shots of their past New Year’s Even cocktail parties on their facebook page.

Gum Ball Crowd

An honourable mention goes to The Gum Ball, who last month put the call out online to see who might be inclined to turn up at their Dashville property for a New Year’s Gum Ball-esque event. Unfortunately they didn’t get enough interest to make anything happen this year, but if you’re keen to see a New Year festival in the Hunter Valley for future years, we think heading to the 2014 Gum Ball and making noises at the organisers might help them decide to go ahead in 2014.

So, where are you spending New Year’s? We’re still considering the conundrum ourselves!

Folk Uke Announce Sydney Shows in 2013

Folk Uke
Image Courtesy of Folk Uke

Cathy Guthrie (yes of those Guthries) and Amy Nelson (daughter of that Nelson) are irreverent folk duo Folk Uke. Playing together for the last decade or so Guthrie and Nelson have carved out a nice little folky niche for themselves that definitely sets them apart from their famous fathers.

No strangers to our shores, Folk Uke have been announced as part of this year’s Woodford Folk Festival. But if you’re holding out for a tour off the back of the Woodford appearance you may have to get yourself to Sydney – Folk Uke only have two sideshows planned and they’re both in the harbour city.

The full list of dates are below with tickets on sale now:

28th December 2012 to 1st January 2013 – Woodford Folk Festival, QLD
Thursday 3rd January – The Brass Monkey, Cronulla, NSW
Friday 4th January – The Basement, Sydney, NSW

Sharon Shannon Announces Woodford Sideshows

Sharon Shannon
Image Courtesy of Sharon Shannon

The wonderful Sharon Shannon, probably one of the world’s most accomplished and respected traditional and contemporary accordion players, is visiting our shores again for this year’s Woodford Folk Festival and has decided to tack on some solo tour dates throughout January. Sharon Shannon was in the country earlier this year for the Port Fairy Folk Festival so we’re pretty excited to have the chance to see her for the second time in less than 12 months.

The full list of dates for Shannon’s tour are below:

Sunday 30th Dec to Tuesday 1st January – Woodford Folk Festival, QLD
Wednesday 2nd January – The Rails, Byron Bay, NSW
Thursday 3rd January – The Rails, Byron Bay, NSW
Friday 4th January – The Irish Club, Brisbane, QLD
Saturday 5th January – Lizotte’s Sydney, Dee Why, NSW
Sunday 6th January – Lizotte’s, Newcastle, NSW
Tuesday 8th January – The Clarendon Hotel, Katoomba, NSW
Wednesday 9th January – The Basement, Sydney, NSW
Thursday 10th January – Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh, VIC
Friday 11th January – The Spotted Mallard, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday 12th January – The Spotted Mallard, Melbourne, VIC

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