National Folk Festival Adds Even More Artists for 2018

Elephant Sessions
Image Courtesy of Elephant Sessions

The next round of artists for the 2018 National Folk Festival were announced this morning featuring a bunch of internationals, returning favourites and local gems.

The announcement is led by Scottish trad-quintet Elephant Sessions (above) who will be in the country for the festival season. Joining them are the likes of WÖR (Belgium), The Young Folk (Ireland), Trouble in the Kitchen, All Our Exes Live in Texas, My Friend The Chocolate Cake, Fiona Ross (Scotland) and Ken Nicol (England), The Melbourne Scottish Fiddle Club, Low Down Riders, Jugularity, Davidson Brothers, Electric Tommy Johnston, Frets Patrick, Loren Kate, Zac Saber, Matilda Rose, Meyers and McNamara, Benji and the Saltwater Sound System and The Quick and The Dead along with choirs Grassroots Union Choir of Tasmania, Alleycats Community Choir, InterVarsity and Ukestral Voices plus the inclusion of the Compánach Irish music concert.

This lineup announcement also features a bunch of poets and spoken word including Keith McKenry, Sandra Renew, Andrew Galan, Daniel J Townsend, Peter Mace, Jacqui Malins with cellist Julia Horvath, Dick Warwick, Martin Pearson, BAD!SLAM!NO!BISCUIT!, Gregory North and Glover and Sorrensen.

The National Folk Festival takes place in Canberra over the Easter long weekend, 29th March to the 2nd April. For more information, including how to pick up early bird tickets, check out the official web site here.

Review: The Snowy Mountains of Music Festival, Perisher

Snowy
Photos and Review by Mandy Lamont

It was a mixture of ski boots and sound boards, goggles and guitars, musicians and skiers all converging in the most picturesque of places for great music and entertainment for the 4th Snowy Mountains of Music Festival.

It was the biggest opening weekend to the ski season with thanks to big early snowfalls, fabulous weather and the festival. Set amongst the ski fields of Perisher, Guthega and Smiggins, there was something for every taste in music. A huge mixture of reggae, folk, blues, bluegrass to poetry, plenty of entertainment for the kids and workshops on hand and body percussion, open tune and slide guitar and east european fiddle and accordion.

Opened and closed by A French Butler Called Smith from the Gold Coast singing new songs still to be recorded. Hot off the Byron Bay Blues Fest they had the crowds at Smiggs dancing the house down doing the ‘Tugan Shuffle’ at the finale.

There were fewer venues this year which made getting around even easier. Most venues were a short stroll from the Perisher Centre, or there were shuttle buses to get up the hill to the Sundeck or over to The Smigs Hotel, where most of the headline acts played. A rockin’ Penny and the Mystics got things started on Friday night followed by one man band Claude Hay on guitar, bass, drums and sitar with an amazing bluesy sound. The Hussy Hicks and Marshall Okell with the guys from Chase the Sun got the crowds warmed up for a great weekend of music.

Snow

On a more sombre note, there were tributes to Birdy. Local musician, producer and friend to many in the industry, who passed away earlier this year. And Brendan Gallaher shed a tear during his performance when talking about his friend, the very talented Jimmy Little, who also passed away earlier this year.

Highlights for me were The Dead Quarry Mountain Rats, His Merry Men, Afro Moses, Nicky Bomba, Claude Hay, the first international act for the festival; The Black Seeds and poet and comical man of many hats, Gregory North.

Plenty of foot tappin’, thigh slappin’, and something new to the folk festival scene, ski boot dancing at the Perisher Snowy Mountains of Music this June long weekend! The perfect way to kick off the winter season in the Snowy Mountains.

Snow

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