Thank Folk It’s Friday – 28th September


This Week in Folk

All the News From The Week That Was

– A bunch of videos from the Nick Drake tribute concert organised by Leroy Lee in June this year have surfaced online featuring the likes of Elana Stone, Katie Wighton, James Edgar Francis, Andy Golledge, Brian Campeau and more. Details here

– The latest Little Features night in Sydney takes place tonight featuring We Are The Birdcage, Karl-Christoph, Charlie Gordon and Tarita (Snowalè). Details here

The Avett Brothers released their brand new video for the track “Live And Die” from their new album The Carpenter. Details here

– Folk favourites James Fagan and Jamie McClennan have come together to form their new project The James Brothers and are offering their debut EP as a free download. Details here

– The 2013 St Jeromes Laneway Festival announced their lineup with a smattering of folk-flavoured acts including Henry Wagons, Kings Of Convenience and Of Monsters And Men. Details here

– Grammy Award winning Americana duo The Civil Wars will be coming to our shores next year for a series of shows in churches around the country as part of the Heavenly Sounds concert tour. Details here

Charles Jenkins will be touring his brand new album Love Your Crooked Neighbour With Your Crooked Heart from this weekend. Details here

Sam Buckingham has a brand new EP due next week and we have a stream of the first single plus details of where you can catch her upcoming shows. Details here

Jordie Lane revealed that he’ll be making his brand new single “Fool For Love” available as a free download from his official site this Monday 1st October. He’s also announced a massive headline tour this November and December following his support slot on Billy Bragg’s Australian tour. Details here

Crooked Saint and Ashleigh Mannix have announced a co-headline tour of the east coast this October and November. Details here

Sarah Humphreys released the charming video for her new single “Like A House Needs A Door” from the album Hello. Details here

– US bluegrass supergroup The New Worlds have announced a Sydney date on top of their appearances at the Dorrigo Folk & Bluegrass Festival and JamGrass. Details here

– The debut solo album from Henry Wagons, Expecting Company? hits stores today (see the iTunes link below) and we have a stream of the track “Unwelcome Company” featuring lison Mosshart (The Kills). Details here

Andrew Bird released details of his forthcoming album Hands of Glory, his second for 2012, including a stream of the first single “Three White Horses”. Details here

Matt Walters is back with a brand new single, “Vacant Heart”, and an EP of the same name on the way. Details here


“Me and [producer Jeff Lang] have been pretty good mates for a good 20 years now. It was good to have someone who actually cared about the music that we play. He sort of knows it inside out because he’s known me for so long so he had a lot of input on it”Hat Fitz and Cara Robinson chat to Gareth Hugh Evans. Interview here

“I had six months where I couldn’t use my hand at all. So I spent a lot of time song-writing and left-hand playing the piano and that kind of thing. And just slowly getting back into it now. I can strum guitar fine. Every now and again I have a little trouble with timing because it’s still healing. But in terms of song-writing it’s been useful. It’s just taken some time to get better really”Rebecca Moore chats to Bill Quinn. Interview here

“Playing solo is different and it requires different skills. Probably one thing it has in its favour at the moment is that it still completely terrifies me”Liz Frencham chats to Bill Quinn. Interview here



“This music is simply stunning and the way Calnin is able to manipulate his sound – drawing long, cello like sounds out of his guitar and deftly layering vocals to create a wall of noise – shows a true mastery of his art”Gareth Hugh Evans reviews Hayden Calnin at FBi Social in Sydney. Review here

“The absolute highlight of the set for me was the band’s cover of “Mexico” by The Staves (and not just because it was preceded by a shout out to Timber and Steel). Crowded around a single mic bluegrass-style with just a guitar as accompaniment, Patrick James and his band transformed this sweet folk-pop song into something almost spiritual – the performance was absolutely stunning and I really hope I get the chance to see them do it again.”Gareth Hugh Evans reviews Patrick James at Brighton Up Bar in Sydney. Review here

Releases This Week

Expecting CompanyHenry Wagons

Timber and Steel Presents

Patrick James
Patrick James
Sunday 30th September – The Workers Club, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 5th October – The Waiting Room, Brisbane, QLD

The Eastern
The Eastern
Sunday 30th September – Wave Rock Weekender, Wave Rock, WA
Thursday 4th October – Wheatsheaf Hotel, Adelaide, SA
Friday 5th October – Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine, VIC

Gigs Next Week

Billy Goat & the Mongrels
Friday 5th October – The Sandringham Hotel, Sydney, NSW

Charles Jenkins
Saturday 29th September – Semaphore Workers Club, Adelaide, SA
Sunday 30th September – The Wheatsheaf Hotel, Adelaide, SA

Charlie Mayfair with The Falls
Friday 28th September – Great Northern Hotel, Byron Bay, NSW

Elliot the Bull
Friday 28th September – Revolver, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday 29th September – The Empress, Melbourne, VIC
Thursday 4th October – Beer Garden, Surfers Paradise, QLD

Hat Fitz and Cara
Thursday 4th October – The Joynt, Brisbane, QLD
Friday 5th October – Byron Bay Brewery, Byron Bay, NSW

Julia Stone
Friday 28th September – Astor Theatre, Perth WA
Sunday 30th September – Bird In Hand Winery, Adelaide SA

Katie Noonan and Karin Schaupp
Friday 28th September – Winthrop Hall, Perth, WA
Saturday 29th September – Mandurah P.A.C., Mandurah, WA
Monday 1st October – The White House, Adelaide Hills, SA
Friday 5th October – Empire Church Theatre, Toowoomba, QLD

Krystle Warren
Saturday 29th September – Community Theatre, Byron Bay, NSW

Friday 28th September – The Soundlounge, Gold Coast, QLD

Lanie Lane
Saturday 29th September – Caloundra Festival, Caloundra, QLD

Little Features feat. We Are The Birdcage, Karl Christoph, Charlie Gradon and Tarita
Friday 28th September – Hibernian House, Sydney, NSW

Mona Delighta feat. Lady Danger, Cookie Baker, Caitlin Park
Sunday 30th September – The Toff in Town, Melbourne, VIC

Nexus World Music Series
feat. The Atlantic Street Band and Marmalade Circus

Friday 28th September – Nexus 
 Centre, Adelaide, SA
feat. Josh Bennett and Jay Dabgar
Friday 5th October – Nexus 
 Centre, Adelaide, SA

Nick and Liesl
28th to 29th September – Caloundra Music Festival, Caloundra, QLD

Rebecca Moore
Sunday 30th September – Old Bus Depot Markets, Kingston, ACT
Monday 1st October – Telstra Road to Discovery Heats, Floriade, ACT
Wednesday 3rd October – Lizotte’s, Newcastle, NSW

Rosie Catalano
Saturday 29th September – The Lass, Newcastle, NSW

Sarah Humphreys
Sunday 30th September – The Rhythm Hut, Gosford, NSW
Friday 5th October – The Newsagency, Sydney, NSW

The Stillsons
Friday 28th September – The Sound Lounge, Gold Coast, QLD
Saturday 29th September – The Royal Mail, Goodna, QLD
Sunday 30th September – The Rails, Byron Bay, NSW

The String Contingent
Friday 28th September to Monday 1st October 1 – Rose’s Gap Music Camp, Rose’s Gap, VIC & Sunshine Fiddle Camp, Alexandra Headland, QLD
Friday 5th October – Concert for Wesley Warragul, Warragul, VIC

Friday 5th October – The Front Gallery, Canberra, ACT

Tim Hart
Friday 28th September – The Loft, Gold Coast, QLD

Friday Folk Flashback

“Four Pence A Day” – Tola Custy & Cyril O’Donoghue

In NSW, ACT and SA this Monday we celebrate Labour Day. Folk music long has ties to the labour movement so I thought we’d dedicate today’s flashback to a labour song. Rather than choose one of the obvious songs I thought I’d go with “Four Pence A Day”, a song I orginally heard performed by Trouble in the Kitchen at the Union Concert as part of the National Folk Festival about 10 years ago. This version is by Tola Custy and Cyril O’Donoghue – if you want to hear the Trouble in the Kitchen version check it out on their Myspace.

Interview: Liz Frencham – Touring with Gregory Page (US)

Liz Frencham
Image Courtesy of Liz Frencham

Liz Frencham is one of the hardest working women in folk.

Liz’s collaborations, bands and projects are legendary. If you laid out her records end to end, including her solo, band, contribution and bit part playing thereon CDs… my, it would take a long time to pick them all up again.

Liz spent part of winter cocooned away in rural Victoria, but in recent times she’s been on the road with her bluegrass outfit Jimmy the Fish, and with the inspired pairing with Fred Smith as Frencham/Smith.

Sometime in the late 1980s, or so it seems, Liz had one of the dodgiest, or rather, “kludgiest” interviews with Bill Quinn which included one landline, one mobile phone as conduit, and another mobile phone as recording device. Liz was in picturesque southern Trentham, and Bill by the banks of the Moruya River on the beautiful Eurobodalla Nature Coast in rural, coastal New South Wales.

For reasons of efficacy and brevity (a service the author rarely provides) what follows is merely a tidbit, and the full interview will be available by month’s end on the Overheard Productions blog.

As Liz prepares to strike out on a tour with US singer-songwriter Gregory Page, I started by asking Liz where her preference for solo or band performing lay.

Liz Frencham: The difference between playing in a band and playing solo is totally different to, say, playing with Jimmy the Fish and playing with Fred.

Playing solo is “different” and it requires different skills. Probably one thing it has in its favour at the moment is that it still completely terrifies me.

It’s not something that I’ve mastered. It’s exciting and I haven’t settled into a comfortable groove, which makes the possibilities seem more endless. I wouldn’t say it was a preference, per se.

I am a bass player, and when you’re fitting into your role the most is when you’re accompanying somebody else.

Bill Quinn: How much of the solo stuff have you done to date?

LF: I’ve only ever done two whole shows. One was at The Artists’ Shed in Queanbeyan, and another one I did at Café Church Space. Even then I only did one whole set, and the next one I made sure I had friends I invited up from every song! So I kind of chickened out, you know?!

BQ: I heard someone once describe it that a solo player has “spaces”. Say, for instance, if you’ve got Nancy [Kerr] and James [Fagan] that when you’ve got the guitar playing, some of those “spaces” will be taken up with the fiddle. Do you ever feel like that when you’re playing on your own that there are some “spaces” there?

LF: Oh, definitely. You can imagine, you know, it can be that confronting to be playing guitar and singing. Think about a guitar, it’s at least a chordal instrument and you can strum it, and sure a singer-guitarist might miss having a soloist or a harmony voice. But imagine how obvious those spaces are when you’ve only got a single note instrument. Really, the most you can ever do is play two or three double stops to suggest chords and things.

But it can get very muddy when you try to play more than one string at once. It becomes very challenging to find ways to interpret the songs with a bass. On your own.

BQ: And you’ve got something very exciting coming up later in 2012, haven’t you?

LF: The Gregory Page tour? Yeah, that’s going to be awesome. He’s an incredible song-writer from the US of A, and he was this style that goes between folk and almost crooner-swing.

And that’s my two favourite genres. All you’d have to do is throw in a touch of bluegrass for me!

He’s come to Australia a couple of times before but this is a more extensive tour for him. For most of the tour I’ll be opening for him, doing a completely solo spot. This is my absolute first time doing the bigger venues completely solo.

BQ: Well I might leave it there and talk to you again soon

And that’s where we leave this part of the interview, and if time and wellbeing and pigeons sitting on various towers of mobile phone companies allow, I’ll talk with Liz somewhere on the road and see how things are progressing on her solo opening tour with Gregory Page.

Gregory Page’s tour dates (feat. Liz Frencham solo upright bass plus vox and smile) are:

Thursday 4th October – Camelot Lounge, Sydney, NSW
Friday 5th October – Yours and Owls, Wollongong, NSW
Sunday 7th October – The Clarendon, Katoomba, NSW
Friday 12th October — Royal Exchange Hotel, Newcastle, NSW
Saturday 13th October — Humph Hall, Allambie Heights, NSW
Sunday 14th October – Folk in the Foothills Festival, Jamberoo, NSW
Thursday 18th October – The Joynt, Brisbane, QLD
Saturday 20th October – Bangalow Bowls Club, Bangalow, NSW
Sunday 21st October — Dingo Creek Jazz Festival, Sunshine Coast, QLD

Matt Walters Announces New EP and Streams First Single

Matt Walters
Image Courtesy of Matt Walters

There’s been some changes happening lately for Melbourne based singer-songwriter Matt Walters. He recently split from his major label of four years with the intention of releasing his music independently. He’s also spent time in his bedroom working on a new EP which he then finished on a whim while holidaying in New York after falling in with “a great bunch of people”.

That new EP is Vacant Heart and is due for release exclusively through Matt Walters’ Bandcamp on the 15th October. Vacant Heart was co-produced by McGowan Southworth and recorded between his Brooklyn apartment studio and at Devin Greenwood’s studio.

The title track from Vacant Heart is available to stream here.

If you like what you hear keep your eyes peeled for a tour from Matt Walters later this year.

Details of Andrew Bird’s Second Album of 2012

Hands of Glory
Image Courtesy of Andrew Bird

“One album was just not enough to contain all the music created this year”, Andrew Bird told fans via his newsletter this week. As we previously reported, Bird is set to release Hands of Glory, his second album in 2012, on the 30th October.

Today he released some more details including the album art (above) and the tracklisting (below):

1. Three White Horses
2. When That Helicopter Comes
3. Spirograph
4. Railroad Bill
5. Something Biblical
6. If I Needed You
7. Orpheo
8. Beyond the Valley of the Three White Horses

The first single from Hands of Glory is “Three White Horses” which is available to stream here:

Review: Patrick James, Brighton Up Bar, Sydney

Patrick James
Image Courtesy of Patrick James

Patrick James with Emma Davis and Zoe Elliot
22nd September 2012, Brighton Up Bar

Is it fair to review a show we (as in Timber and Steel) presented? Can we be objective? Probably not to be honest, but we wouldn’t have presented Patrick James’ single launch tour, and attended the Sydney leg, if we weren’t big fans of his music already. So I guess this should act as a warning – if you were looking for anything other than gushing admiration you should probably go elsewhere.

The first of two supports at the Brighton Up Bar, Darlinghurst’s latest buzz venue, was the wonderful Zoe Elliot. I’ve seen Elliot live a few times recently and I have to say that I enjoy her music more and more each time. Elliot is a storyteller and her music is infused is all sorts of folky goodness which would see her just as comfortable at a small town folk festival as she is warming up a crowd at a trendy inner-city bar. I think what I find most endearing about her live performance is just how expressive she is with her entire performance – there’s constantly an “this is what I love doing” look on Elliot’s face as she sings and you can’t help but be drawn into her music. I liked the way she changed up her singing voice depending on the theme of the song – thick Australian drawl for the storytelling songs, smokey American chanteuse for the jazzier songs – and her between song banter with the audience really connected. I’m really interested to see where this musical journey takes Zoe Elliot over the next few months.

Emma Davis is an artist I’ve seen countless times and is always a delight to watch. Her self-deprecating stage precedence, her easy rapport with the audience and the way she loses herself in her music makes her such a delight to see and the perfect second-support, captivating the growing crowd. Highlights for me in Davis’ set include her cover of Sugar Ray’s “Every Morning” on ukelele and her wonderful “Feel a Thing” which had the audience singing along filling the room with a tremendous sound.

When I’ve seen Patrick James in recent months its always been as a duo – just James and his trusty banjo player Scotty Steven – so it was exciting to see him climb on stage with a bass player and drummer in tow as well. Patrick James is creating some of the sweetest folk music in Sydney and word is obviously getting out judging by the sold out crowd at Brighton Up Bar on Saturday night. And when the music started you could tell every eye in the room was immediately drawn to James.

At first I thought the mix wasn’t quite right and I wasn’t hearing enough of the different instruments – I was right next to one of the speakers which probably didn’t help – but as the set progressed the sound melded and captured the band perfectly. The set didn’t dwell too much on Patrick James’ back catalogue with a number of new songs thrown into the mix – my favourites being “Stay”, which included a sprinkling of Bon Iver’s “For Emma”, and the week old “Something in the Way We Are” that reminded me a lot of Crosby, Stills and Nash with the way the harmonies were constructed.

But the absolute highlight of the set for me was the band’s cover of “Mexico” by The Staves (and not just because it was preceded by a shout out to Timber and Steel). Crowded around a single mic bluegrass-style with just a guitar as accompaniment, Patrick James and his band transformed this sweet folk-pop song into something almost spiritual – the performance was absolutely stunning and I really hope I get the chance to see them do it again.

Finishing the set with the new single “All About To Change” (plus encore) Patrick James wrapped up what would probably have been my favourite gig of his yet. From the packed room, to the choice of supports, to the sound, to the tight band I don’t think James could have picked a better way to launch his new single. And this is just the first new single before an inevitable EP meaning there’s many more nights like this to come.

Stream Henry Wagon’s Track “Unwelcome Company” feat. Alison Mosshart

Henry Wagons
Image Courtesy of Henry Wagons

The brand new Henry Wagons solo album, Expecting Company?, hits the shelves tomorrow and to give you a taster our favourite alt-country crooner has unleased the track “Unwelcome Company”, featuring guest vocals from Alison Mosshart (The Kills), a little early for you. Henry Wagons had the following to say about the song:

“While staying in Alison’s house in East London, she told me the most biblical tale of relentless waves of pestilence which took place in her home. Disturbed by the construction of a new underground station deep beneath her house, all of the sewer-dwelling rats were inspired to rise to the surface for a party above ground. Her tale went through rat poison, rat death, maggots, followed by a plague of blowflies. Perfect material for a twisted duet. I ended up going to London to record her vocal, in the very house the song is about. If you listen closely you can hear the last of the blowflies saying hi every now and then.”

Check out “Unwelcome Company” here:

Henry Wagons will be touring for Timber and Steel this November. The full list of dates are below:

Saturday 3rd November – The National Hotel, Geelong, VIC
Sunday 4th November – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine, VIC
Monday 5th November – The Thornbury Theatre, Melbourne, VIC
Thursday 8th November – Transit Bar, Canberra, ACT
Friday 9th November – The Clarendon, Katoomba, NSW
Saturday 10th November – The Annandale Hotel, Sydney, NSW
Thursday 15th November – Lismore City Bowling Club, Lismore, NSW
Friday 16th November – The Old Museum, Brisbane, QLD

The New Worlds Announce Sydney Show

The New Worlds
Image Courtesy of The New Worlds

Bluegrass supergroup The New Worlds, made up of some of Nashville’s most in-demand acoustic musicians, are heading to Australia in October for a couple of festivals including the Dorrigo Folk & Bluegrass Festival and JamGrass down in Melbourne. And now it looks as though they’ll be treating Sydney to their pickin’ and pluckin’ as well.

The New Worlds are Dave Goldenberg (mandolin), Christian Sedelmyer (fiddles/vocals), Shelby Means (bass/vocals) and Rachel Baiman (banjo/fiddle/vocals). Prior to JamGrass The New Worlds will be tearing up The Cat and Fiddle in Balmain, Sydney on the 17th October with George Jackson and Daniel Watkins in support. Tickets will be $20 and will be available on the door.

For more information check out the official Facebook invite here.

New Sarah Humphreys Video, “Like A House Needs A Door”

Sarah Humphreys
Image Courtesy of Sarah Humphreys

The brand new single from Sarah Humphreys’ album Hello, the charming “Like A House Needs A Door” has just been given an equally charming video. Directed by Daniel Grey the video is all soft colours, sunshine and happiness. Check it out below:

Timber and Steel Presents: Sunday 30th September at The Workers Club

Patrick James
Image Courtesy of Patrick James

Following a hugely successful Sydney single launch last weekend Patrick James is heading down south to do it all over again in Melbourne this Sunday. Timber and Steel are very proud to presenting James in the headline spot at this Sunday’s Workers Club matinée show.

Joining Patrick James on Sunday will be Hamish Anderson and Jude Jacobs giving you an afternoon of fine folk music. The show kicks off at 2pm and as always lunch will be available beforehand. Tickets will be $15 on the door – for more information check out the official Facebook event here. The set times are below:

Jude Jacobs – 2pm
Hamish Anderson – 3pm
Patrick James – 4pm

Crooked Saint and Ashleigh Mannix Announce Joint Headline Tour

Crooked Saint
Image Courtesy of Crooked Saint

Folk, rock, blues and roots will combine when Tim Wheatley, AKA Crooked Saint, joins forces with Ashleigh Mannix for a joint headline tour of the East Coast. Crooked Saint is touring off the back of his new double A-side “Hot & Heavy”/”Outta Sight, Outta Mind” while Ashleigh Mannix has a new live album, Ashleigh Mannix – LIVE at The Vanguard and a new EP Trill, so there’ll be plenty of music to catch on this tour.

The full list of dates, along with a stream of Crooked Saint’s “Outta Sight Outta Mind”, are below:

Friday 12th October – Western Port Hotel, Westernport, VIC
Saturday 13th October – Baby Black Café, Bacchus Marsh, VIC
Wednesday 17th October – Lizotte’s, Central Coast, NSW
Thursday 18th October – Front Gallery & Café, Canberra, ACT
Friday 19th October – Clarendon Guesthouse, Katoomba, NSW
Saturday 20th October – Heritage Hotel, Wollongong, NSW
Wednesday 24th October – Lizotte’s, Newcastle, NSW
Thursday 25th October – Old Manly Boatshed, Manly, NSW
Friday 26th October – The Beresford Hotel, Surry Hills, NSW
Saturday 27th October – Sydney Blues & Roots Festival, Windsor, NSW
Thursday 1st November – Railway Friendly Bar, Byron Bay, NSW
Friday 2nd November – Pacific Hotel, Yamba, NSW
Saturday 3rd November – Armidale Club, Armidale, NSW
Sunday 4th November – Hoey Moey, Coffs Harbour, NSW
Thursday 8th November – Café Le Monde, Noosa Heads, QLD
Friday 9th November – Bon Amici, Toowoomba, QLD
Saturday 10th November – The Loft, Gold Coast, QLD
Sunday 11th November – Ric’s Bar, Brisbane, QLD

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