Winners of the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2014

BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards

The 2014 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards were held at the Royal Albert Hall in London last night in a ceremony which featured a ton of Timber and Steel favourites both as winners and as performers.

The winners on the night included the likes of Bella Hardy, The Full English and Anaïs Mitchell & Jefferson Hamer picking up gongs. This year the Young Folk Award, always a one-to-watch artist, went to The Mischa Macpherson Trio while the first ever recipient of the Hall of Fame award went to Cecil Sharp. Check out the full list of winners below:

Lifetime Achievement Award
Clannad & Martin Carthy

Good Tradition Award
Cambridge Folk Festival

Folk Singer of the Year
Bella Hardy

Best Duo
Phillip Henry & Hannah Martin

Best Group
The Full English

Best Album
The Full English – The Full English

Horizon Award
Greg Russell & Ciaran Algar

Musician of the Year
Aidan O’Rourke

Best Original Song
“Two Ravens” – Lisa Knapp

Best Traditional Track
“Willie of Winsbury” – Anaïs Mitchell & Jefferson Hamer

BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award
The Mischa Macpherson Trio

Hall of Fame
Cecil Sharp

And of course the night also showcased a bunch of great performances that the BBC has already made available online. Check out hightlights from Peggy Seeger, Martin Carthy & Eliza Carthy, Anaïs Mitchell & Jefferson Hamer, The Fisherman’s Friends, Clannad, The Full English, Suzanne Vega, Martin Simpson & Richard Hawley and Bellowhead. Watch them all below

Gareth Hugh Evans’ Top 25 Tracks of 2013


Are you sick of end of year lists yet? Well stay patient because we’ve got one more for you. Our esteemed Editor in Chief Gareth Hugh Evans has picked his top 25 songs of the year.

There were so many amazing tracks released this year and so many deserving songs didn’t make the cut. Check out what 25 songs Gareth picked and then dive back through the Timber and Steel archives for more amazing music from 2013.

1. Melody Pool – “Henry”
This was the song that made me fall in love with Melody Pool when I saw her the Gulgong Folk Festival way back in January. It’s no wonder this song won Pool the songwriter award at the Telstra Road to Discovery – it really is something special. If you haven’t heard Melody Pool’s amazing album The Hurting Scene from which this track is taken then do yourself a favour and pick it up right now.
Read Timber and Steel’s Spotlight on Melody Pool here

2. William Fitzsimmons – “Centralia”
This song is so recent it hasn’t actually officially been released yet (the video is an acoustic version of the track which is due to appear on next year’s album Lions) but it’s just stunning. From the moment I first heard this on Youtube I was in love – I can’t wait until William Fitzsimmons releases an entire album full of music just like this next year.
Read details of the upcoming William Fitzsimmons album Lions here

3. Anaïs Mitchell & Jefferson Hamer – “Geordie (Child 209)”
Anaïs Mitchell and Jefferson Hamer have made traditional music cool again. Releasing Child Ballads, an album of songs collected by the great Francis James Child back in the 1800s, the two singers are continuing the folk process and reinventing these songs for another generation of music lovers. Sublime.
Read Mackajay’s review of Child Ballads here

4. Mumford and Sons – “Hopeless Wanderer”
I have to admit that “Hopeless Wanderer” was not an immediate favourite of mine from Babel. I initially found its choppy dynamics and rhythm off-putting and to me the song was only redeemed by the harmonies in the chorus. But the song has grown on me throughout 2013 and now it’s a firm favourite – definitely helped by what is probably the best folky film clip of the year.
Read Gareth Hugh Evans’ feelings on the Mumford and Sons hiatus here

5. Vance Joy – “Riptide”
“Riptide” has definitely been a slow burner for Vance Joy but it’s finished the year super strongly and scored him accolades, record contracts and any number of festival spots. And with good reason – this is a really really good song.
Read Gareth Hugh Evans’ review of Vance Joy’s Splendour in the Grass appearance here

6. The Milk Carton Kids – “Honey, Honey”
When I saw The Milk Carton Kids earlier this year I would have to say it was the funniest show I’ve ever been to. In contrast to their sweet, harmonic folk songs that have drawn them comparisons to Simon and Garfunkel and The Everly Brothers, The Milk Carton Kids’ between song banter is some of the driest, rolling-in-the-aisles funny stuff you’ll ever hear. It also helps that they write songs like this.
Read Thom Owen Miles’ Review of The Ash & Clay from The Milk Carton Kids here

7. Emma Davis – “Stand Tall”
I love this song so much. A great song by itself – that chorus is something else – it’s heightened buy the driving percussion and understated harmonies. This song draws you in and wraps you up. Thank you for making music Emma Davis – the world’s a better place for it.
Read details about Emma Davis’ “Stand Tall” video here

8. Tolka – “Dr. Gilbert’s”
I’ve been waiting for a trad band to come along and take my breath away this year, and lo and behold along comes Tolka. These guys are making Celtic music exciting again – and they’re so tight you could bounce a tenor banjo off their arrangments. Lovely stuff.
Read Bill Quinn’s interview with Tolka here

9. Sam Amidon – “As I Roved Out”
No one reinterprets traditional music like Sam Amidon. He deconstructs these songs and builds them up into something new and very very special. This track in particular will astound you – and those drums? I love those drums!
Read Gareth Hugh Evans’ interview with Sam Amidon here

10. Lachlan Bryan feat. Kasey Chambers – “Whistle and Waltz”
This clip made it’s appearance about a third of the way through the year, well after the album that it’s from, Shadow of the Gun, was released and just before Lachlan Bryan started promoting his new album Black Coffee. I love the accordion on this and Kasey Chambers’ backing vocals are superb. But it’s the chorus that makes “Whistle and Waltz” – so simple yet so perfect.
Read details of the new Lachlan Bryan album Black Coffee here

11. Laura Marling – “Master Hunter”
This is one of the first tracks that Laura Marling revealed from her 2013 album Once I Was An Eagle – taking all of the power and sweetness of her previous work and channeling it through a Dylan-esque prisim full of snarling, rhythmic, free-flowing melodies and Bo Diddley beats. She’s one of the most prolific artists we cover and everything Laura Marling produces is better than what comes before.
Read Timber and Steel’s combined review of Laura Marling’s Once I Was An Eagle here

12. Bear’s Den – “Isaac”
Finally Bear’s Den fulfilled they’re promise in 2013, releasing two outstanding EPs – Agape and Within/Without and shining a spotlight on the incredible talents of Andrew Davie, Kev Jones and Joey Haynes. It’s about time boys – keep it up!
Read Gareth Hugh Evans’ interview with Bear’s Den here

13. Rosie Catalano feat. Jack Carty – “Hearts”
Rosie Catalano sent me the unmastered versions of the tracks on her Dreams Are Just Movies EP and even in their raw form I knew this song was a standout. I love the plucked strings in the the verses, the subtle percussion and Jack Carty leaving his falsetto at the door for some pitch perfect backing vocals.
Read details of Rosie Catalano’s EP Dreams Are Just Movies here

14. Fanny Lumsden & The Thrillseekers – “Sea Elephant School”
I think this is Fanny Lumsden’s tightest track to date – dynamic, driving and definitely toe-tap worthy. I’ve liked Lumsden’s music for a while but with “Sea Elephant School” I feel like she’s really finding her stride as a songwriter and a storyteller.
Read Gareth Hugh Evans’ interview with Fanny Lumsden here

15. Boy Outside – “River Runs To The Sea”
The moment Boy Outside added a rhythm section to his dark, alt-country sound something just clicked for me. He writes songs that cry out for a band (even one as restrained as in this track) and the result is beautiful. The video for “River Runs To The Sea”, shot in Western NSW, just adds a depth to the track – really lovely music.
Read Gareth Hugh Evans’ interview with Boy Outside here

16. Volcano Choir – “Byegone”
I love the way everyone pretended they already knew that Justin Vernon had a side project when Volcano Choir released their Reprave album this year. This track snuck up on me thanks to a couple of overseas blogs but I’m so glad it stuck. There’s something epic about this track and Vernon’s voice is in all it’s Phil-Collins-double-tracked-vocals glory here.
Read more details about Volcano Choir here

17. Mustered Courage – “Cruel Alibis”
When Mustered Courage banjo player and lead singer Nick Keeling handed me an unofficial copy of the band’s album Powerlines at the start of the year I lapped it up. These guys are one of the best bands in the country and their latest long player is testament to the amazing music they’re producing. “Cruel Alibis” is a definite highlight from Powerlines and while I’ve seen them perform it live a hundred times or more I can’t help but get excited every time the full band bursts into the second verse.
Read Gareth Hugh Evans interview with Mustered Courage here

18. Arbori – “Polar Bear Swim”
I’m so glad Arbori just completed a successful crowdfunding campaign to put together a new EP next year. The speed at which these guys release music is frustrating (sorry Steve!) – but mainly because it’s so stunning. “Polar Bear Swim” is another Arbori and the contemporary dance heavy video is simply beautiful.
Read about the debut of Arbori’s “Polar Bear Swim” here

19. Boy & Bear – “Southern Sun”
I think a few people expected Boy & Bear to morph into the Australian Mumford and Sons for their 2013 sophomore album Harlequin Dream, but instead they’ve chosen to channel 70s Laurel Canyon, and to great effect. “Southern Sun” was the first single from the album and it still sounds up as one of the best.
Read details of Boy & Bear’s new album Harlequin Dream here

20. Castlecomer – “Forrest”
I think I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again – Castlecomer’s “Forrest” reminds me so much of “Life in a Northern Town” by The Dream Academy. Not that that’s a bad think – I love “Life in a Northern Town” by The Dream Academy. I love the African sounds to “Forrest” and just how uplifted it makes me feel.
Read details of the Castlecomer EP Lone Survivour here

21. Sam Buckingham – “Follow You”
In “Follow You” Sam Buckingham has crafted a near-perfect indie-pop song. The melody is catchy, the lyrics are simple yet touching and it’s just so damn catchy. There are so many folky singer-songwriters trying to achieve what Sam Buckingham seems to have effortlessly produced here.
Read Gareth Hugh Evans’ interview with Sam Buckingham here

22. Marcus Mumford & Oscar Isaac – “Fare Thee Well (Dink’s Song)”
I can’t tell you how excited I am by the upcoming Cohen Brothers film Inside Llewyn Davis, set during the 1960s New York folk revival. The film will be in our theatres next year but the soundtrack – featuring the film’s actors Oscar Isaac, Justin Timberlake and Carey Mulligan along with artists like Marcus Mumford & Oscar Isaac and Punch Brothers – is out now and is very very good. This version of “Fare Thee Well (Dink’s Song)” is probably my favourite track on the soundtrack.
Read details of the Inside Llewyn Davis soundtrack here

23. Gregory Alan Isakov – “Saint Valentine”
My love affair with Gregory Alan Isakov was solidified this year with the release of his superlative new album The Weatherman. “Saint Valentine” was the first single from the album and has managed to earworm its way into my life. A stunning song from a stunning songwriter.
Read details of Gregory Alan Isakov’s album The Weatherman here

24. The Little Stevies – “Diamonds For Your Tea”
Having gone through a bunch of changes in the lead up to their new album Diamonds For Your Tea and the result is their most mature album to date. The album’s title track and first single perfectly encapsulates the type of music The Little Stevies are producing at the moment and once again demonstrates their beautiful harmonies.
Read Gareth Hugh Evans’ interview with The Little Stevies here

25. Jack Carty & Casual Psychotic – “What Does Your Heart Say?”
When Jack Carty told me his 2013 collaboration with producer Casual Psychotic was probably not going to be folky enough for me I took him at face value and ignored the Predictable Crisis of Modern Life EP longer than I should of. When I finally got around to listening to it I realised what I was missing – and Carty’s trademark storytelling style is all over it. The EP’s single, “What Does Your Heart Say?”, is one of the folkier tracks and is the perfect way to finish this list.
Watch Jack Carty live at The Front in Canberra here

Timber and Steel’s Top Albums of 2013

Vinyl Records

2013 has provided yet another year of amazing music from the folk, acoustic, traditional, roots, alt-country and singer-songwriter scene. There’s been a number of strong local releases this year and some definite highlights from our favourite artists from overseas.

This also feels like a year where more artists are embracing the full length album again. There have been some outstanding EPs and standalone singles of course but the album format really seems to have made a resurgence.

Once again we’ve asked each of the Timber and Steel contributors to give us their favourite albums or EPs of 2013 and the results are once again eclectic, interesting and most certainly unique.

So without further ado we bring you Timber and Steel’s Top Albums of 2013:

Gareth Hugh Evans

Melody Pool

1. Melody PoolThe Hurting Scene
At the Gulgong Folk Festival in early January I stumbled across Melody Pool and was transfixed. Pool’s music was both timeless and fresh. Her sound was a dash of Laura Marling, a smattering of Emmylou Harris and a generous dose of Joni Mitchell but all the while unique. I’ve heard people refer to Melody Pool as an “old soul” and think that captures her – there’s a depth and an age to her lyrics and her voice that you don’t hear in artists twice her age. When I picked up The Hurting Scene following its release a month or two after the festival it was put on high rotation and I was reminded just what had captured me when I saw her live. I’ve recommended The Hurting Scene and Melody Pool to everyone since, seen her live a number of times throughout the year and even awkwardly chatted to her when she support The Milk Carton Kids. I think there’s big things in Melody Pool’s future – pick up The Hurting Scene and you’ll think so too.

2. Anaïs Mitchell and Jefferson HamerChild Ballads
3. Laura MarlingOnce I Was An Eagle
4. Patrick JamesAll About to Change
5. Gregory Alan IsakovThe Weatherman


Melody Pool

1. Melody PoolThe Hurting Scene

The song writing on this album is skillful and honest – I love that. Additionally I’m partial to a great singer, Melody has a sweet delicious voice that draws me into the song. Finally, I liked the production which had interesting space and dynamics. And those rich string arrangements are just gorgeous!

2. Mustered CouragePowerlines
3. Dan ParsonsDan Parsons
4. Rose CousinsWe Have Made a Spark
5. Matt CorbyResolution EP


The Melodic
1. The MelodicEffra Parade

This is an album that immediately brought a smile to my face. A blend of traditional folk harmonies, older (even baroque!) instruments, tied together with afro-latino rhythms and strings of the charango, and the ever present melodica of their namesake. For me comparisons include the hugely underrated Grand Union, the music of Paul Simon, the bass driven melancholy of Australia’s Sodastream, and certainly, as a number of other reviewers have mentioned, The Decemberists. All comparisons considered, this is an upbeat album, that is lyrically adventurous, and interspersed with story, without being at all heavy. Though released for the colder UK months, Effra Parade sits coolly and comfortably in the summer of the southern hemisphere, that can (and will!) accompany many a lazy Sunday cocktail or weekend roadtrip.

2. The Heavy BlinkersHealth
3. Twin ForksTwin Forks EP
4. The Avett BrothersMagpie and the Dandelion
5. Jim JamesRegions of Light and Sound of God


Laura Marling

1. Laura MarlingOnce I Was An Eagle

In this album’s first single “Master Hunter”, which is a statement in itself, Marling swaggers and snarls in front of her pounding rhythm section. “I’ve cured my skin, so nothing gets in. Nothing as hard as it tries.” A friend said she sounded kind of scary. I like that. I like to think this is a protest album against gender stereotypes, but she’s much more than a woman scorned. The music is sparse, sprawling, full of odd angles and surprises. Sometimes it’s challenging, sometimes it’s beautiful. But it’s her voice that always catches me off guard. It’s one of the most expressive instruments in music. And that’s what this is about. With all the lush musicianship stripped away, Marling proves once again that she is one of the most intriguing and independent voices in 21st century music. And if this album isn’t considered a classic, it’s only because the next one will be better.

2. The Cat EmpireSteal the Light
3. The Milk Carton KidsThe Ash and Clay
4. Mama Kinthe Magician’s Daughter
5. Brighter LaterThe Wolves

KT Bell


1. Jamie Smith’s MabonWindblown
I came across Jamie Smith’s Mabon at a London gig earlier this year, Wales at Cecil Sharp House, and they were the stand out for me wherein I bought their latest album, Windblown, on the spot. Since then, this lyrical and lilting Welsh Folk has strummed and jigged its way in to my heart and is one of the most frequent spins on my playlist. Stu decided it’s the type of house music for a Welsh Bar, so if you see such an establishment pop up here in Australia, don’t be surprised to see us behind the bar.
2. Mike VassDecemberwell
3. Paper AeroplanesLittle Letters
4. Boy & BearHarlequin Dream
5. Josh PykeThe Beginning And The End Of Everything


Anais Mitchell

1. Anaïs Mitchell and Jefferson HamerChild Ballads

When I first listened to this album I was immediately impressed by the way the modern, American arrangements breathed new life into these old, old English ballads. What is far more surprising is that I am still finding the album fresh and inspiring many months later. This is my clear winner this because of it’s routinely high rotation on my stereo.

2. Vance JoyGod Loves You When You’re Dancing
3. Laura MarlingOnce I Was An Eagle
4. Laura ViersWarp and Weft
5. Boy & BearHarlequin Dream

Nikita Andrea

Jordie Lane

1. Jordie LaneNot Built to Last

Devoid of cliché, this ultimate storyteller voices lyrics of the present moment through warming crystalline vocals. This release is a welcome sound evolution of Lane’s alternative country style. I chose Not Built to Last because for one this is an EP showcasing songs that clearly prove this musician has something to say and also for the fact that I heavily dislike anything country so this man should be heavily commended for bringing such full and palatable music to the table for all tasters.

2. Bob EvansFamiliar Stranger
3. Oh Pep!II
4. Bears With GunsOnly The Quick and the Hungry
5. Sleepy DreamersCreatures

Serena Skye

Mama Kin

1. Mama KinThe Magician’s Daughter

I liked this album from the outset, when I first reviewed it, and throughout the year it has grown on me even more. Danielle Caruana’s vocal is sublime, and each track offers a different vibe both sonically and emotionally, but they still work together as a cohesive album. “Bosom of Our Bed” is still my favourite track, closely followed by “Rescue,” and I cannot wait to see their next offering.

2. The Cat EmpireSteal the Light
3. Vance JoyGod Loves You When You’re Dancing
4. Laura MarlingOnce I was an Eagle
5. Melanie HorsnellThe Cloud Appreciation Society

Thom Owen Miles


1. PhosphorescentMuchacho

Despite Phosphorescent consistently releasing album after album for the past ten years, Muchacho is the first to truly appeal to me and capture my imagination. Muchacho is a product of tall ambition, of bold choices and unfettered creative vision. For an indie-folk record, it is delightfully untraditional in its production and utilisation of mediums unfamiliar to the genre. “Song For Zula” is perhaps the best song to speak for the album, in all its poetic bliss and compositional glory.

2. Radical FaceThe Family Tree: The Branches
3. The Milk Carton KidsThe Ash & Clay
4. Brown BirdFits of Reason
5. Night BedsCountry Sleep

Thank Folk It’s Friday – 22nd November


This Week in Folk

All the News From The Week That Was

– Sydney indie-folk night Little Features has announced the lineup to its final show of 2013 this Saturday including Bears With Guns, Charlie Gradon, Arbori, Tom Stephens, Lyon Apprentice and Timberwolf. Details here

Jep and Dep have released a haunting alt-country version of Kylie Minogue’s “Confide in Me”. Details here

– US based six piece Okkervil River are returning to our shores next February. Details here

Bluesfest revealed their fourth lineup announcement for 2014. Details here

– Western Australian bluegrass six-piece The Seals have released their debut video “Drink It Down”. Details here

Mama Kin has released her new video “Red Wood River”. Details here

– Next February we’ll be treated to a brand new album from William Fitzsimmons, Lions. Details here

– The Gulgong Folk Festival have revealed their 2014 program including Big Erle, Caitlin Harnett, Daniel Champagne, Fig Jam, James Thomson, Melanie Horsnell and Richard Lawson. Details here

Johnny Flynn has released a stunning new lyric video for his track “Gypsy Hymn”. Details here

– You can stream a couple of tracks from the album Foreverly from Billie Joe and Norah online. Details here

Sarah Blasko has released her new video “Fool” and announced Heavenly Sounds tour dates. Details here

– Melbourne psych folk band Immigrant Union have a new video for their single “I Can’t Return”. Details here

Georgia Fair are performing three headline shows next week to support their new album Trapped Flame. Details here

– The John Butler Trio revealed their brand new single “Only One”. Details here


“Songwriting’s really important to me – Boy Outside began as just me and an acoustic guitar. When you take such a pared-back approach into a live setting, every song has to be solid” – Aidan Cooney from Boy Outside chats to Gareth Hugh Evans. Interview here

“Yeah we’ve been trying to refine our sound a little bit. 18 months ago, our sound was so different – there was a mix between folk and tremolo surf songs. It was a bit crazy, and seemingly a bit old and weathered. Since then we’ve written a bunch of new songs. We’re playing cut down versions of our full production songs like “Slow Your Mind”, “Blue Afternoon”, and of course our single to be released next year “2001″” – Matt Gollan from The British Blues chats to Gareth Hugh Evans. Interview here

“At the moment we’re gearing up for our EP launches in Sydney and Melbourne! Then we’re planning to do a month of songwriting, maybe a little band camp holiday if we’re lucky, before recording an album early next year then touring to America in the middle of the year. Lots to look forward to!” – Georgia Mooney from All Our Exes Live In Texas chats to Gareth Hugh Evans. Interview here



“JamGrass is in many ways a unique event. An urban, indoor festival focused on a genre of music that is hardly cool (despite hipsters having a fondness for a banjo), JamGrass is almost the exact opposite of any other bluegrass festival in the country. But it works. And it keeps drawing me back”Gareth Hugh Evans reviews the JamGrass Music Festival 2013. Review here

“Sibylla and Beth are obviously very comfortable in their new duo-with-a-backing-band setup and seemed to really be enjoying bringing their new material to the audience. The girls’ trademark harmonies (and relaxed banter) were in full force and despite some sound issues as a result of a lot of microphone swapping they were sounding absolutely beautiful in Camelot’s intimate space”Gareth Hugh Evans reviews The Little Stevies in Sydney. Details here

Releases This Week

Andrew Bird
I Want to See Pulaski at NightAndrew Bird

ForeverlyBillie Joe and Norah

Jacinta Price Dry River
Dry RiverJacinta Price

Laura and Susie
MerembaLaura & Susie

Lost Ragas
Phantom RideLost Ragas


Gigs Next Week

Boy & Bear
riday 22nd November – Metropolis, Fremantle, WA
Saturday 23rd November – The Astor Theatre, Perth, WA

Busby Marou
Friday 22nd November – Republic Bar, Hobart, TAS
Saturday 23rd November – Corner Hotel, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 29th November – Fowlers, Adelaide, SA

Communion Melbourne feat. Thomas Calder (The Trouble With Templeton), Castlecomer, Martha Marlow, Dominic Youdan
Sunday 24th November – The Toff In Town, Melbourne, VIC

Davidson Brothers
Sunday 24th November – The Spotted Mallard, Melbourne, VIC

Dustin Tebbutt
Sunday 24th November – The Aviary Rooftop Sessions, Perth, WA
Friday 6th December – 5 Church St, Bellingen, NSW

Dyson Stringer Cloher
Friday 22nd November – Balnarring Community Hall, Balnarring, VIC
Saturday 23rd November – Butter Factory, Mornington, VIC
Wednesday 27th November – Red Hot, Devonport, TAS
Thursday 28th November – Grand Poobah, Hobart, TAS
Friday 29th November – Barossa Regional Gallery, Tanunda, SA

Emma Davis and Brian Campeau
Thursday 28th November – Grace Darling, Melbourne, VIC

Festival of Small Halls w/ Jordie Lane and Rose Cousins
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

Georgia Fair
Friday 29th November – Howler, Melbourne, VIC

Gossling with Whitaker
Saturday 23rd November – Oxford Art Factory, Sydney, NSW

Immigrant Union
Friday 22nd November – Howlers, Melbourne, VIC

John Butler Trio
Sunday 24th November – The Corner Hotel, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 22nd November – Gorgeous Festival, McLaren Vale, SA
Saturday 23rd November – Queenscliff Music Festival, Queenscliff, VIC
Monday 25th November – The Seymour Centre, Sydney, NSW

Kate Martin
Saturday 23rd November – Grace Darling, Melbourne, VIC

Kaurna Cronin
Sunday 24th November – Sofar Sounds, Sydney, NSW
Friday 29th November – The Aztec, Forster, NSW

Lachlan Bryan
Saturday 23rd November – Mona Museum & Gallery, Hobart, TAS
Sunday 24th November – Brookefield Winery, Margate, TAS
Tuesday 26th November – The Vanguard, Sydney, NSW

Lime and Steel
Friday 22nd November – Baroque Room, Katoomba, NSW
Thursday 28th November – Union Hotel, Newtown, NSW

Little Features feat. Bears With Guns, Charlie Gradon, Arbori, Tom Stephens, Lyon Apprentice, Timberwolf
Saturday 23rd November – Hibernian House, Sydney, NSW

Mullumbimby Music Festival
Friday 22nd to Sunday 24th November – Mullumbimby, NSW

Patrick James
Friday 22nd November – Northcote Social Club, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday 23rd November – Gorgeous Festival, McLaren Vale, SA
Sunday 24th November – Queenscliff Music Festival, VIC
Wednesday 27th November – Black Bear Lodge

Perch Creek Family Jugband
Thursday 21st to Sunday 24th November – Mullum Music Festival, Mullumbimby, NSW
Friday 22nd November – The Soundlounge, Currumbin, QLD
Thursday 28th November – Hotel Steyne, Manly, NSW
Friday 29th November – The Small Ballroom, Newcastle, NSW

Robert Ellis and Corey Chisel
Friday 22nd November – The Small Ballroom, Newcastle, NSW

Sal Kimber & The Rollin’ Wheel
Friday 22th to Sunday 24th November – Mullum Music Festival, NSW
Friday 29th November – The Northcote Social Club, Melbourne, VIC

The Crooked Fiddle Band
Friday 22nd November – Baroque Room, Katoomba, NSW
Saturday 23rd November – The Standard, Sydney, NSW

The Little Stevies
Friday 22nd November – The Old Museum, Brisbane, QLD
Saturday 23rd to Sunday 24th November – Mullum Music Festival, Mullumbimby NSW

The Twoks
Friday 22nd November – The Espy, Melbourne, VIC

Friday 29th November – Revolver, Melbourne, VIC

Thursday 28th November – Alhambra, Brisbane, QLD
Friday 29th November – Woombye Pub, Sunshine Coast, QLD

Friday Folk Flashback

“Riddles Wisely Expounded” – Anaïs Mitchell and Jefferson Hamer

The theme of the impossible riddle is often repeated in traditional music, most famously in this Child Ballad, “Riddles Wisely Expounded”. This song has been recorded by many artists over the years and we’ve chosen a very recent version for this week’s FFF because, well, we think it’s really really good.

The New Traditionalists – Redefining Folk Music

Sounds of the South
Image Courtesy of Vivid

On the first weekend of June some of North America’s most exciting musicians including members of indie folk band Megafaun, jazz collective Fight the Big Bull, former Be Good Tanyas lead singer Frazey Ford and Bon Iver frontman Justin Vernon will be taking to the stage of the Sydney Opera House concert hall as part of the Vivid festival. But rather than performing their own tracks these musicians will be reaching back in time into the legendary songbook of folklorist and collector Alan Lomax for Sounds of the South.

That these musicians, many of whom have had the word “folk” used to describe their own original music, are tapping into traditional music and bringing it to their audiences feels as though the music is coming full circle and that the indie-folk of the modern singer-songwriter is being somewhat folded into the tradition.

While there have been artists interpreting and refining the traditional folk music canon since the first collectors ventured out in the late 19th century every now and then an artist will emerge who takes traditional music in a completely new and exciting direction – away from the simple guitar or harmonic singing (both of which are fairly recent additions to the folk tradition themselves). From bands like Fairport Convention and Steeleye Span infusing a rock beat and electric instrumentation into folk songs to The Pogues punk take on the celtic tradition, there have always been musicians who are willing to shake off expectations and push the boundaries of traditional music.

We thought it was time to explore the current crop of artists who are doing new and interesting things with traditional music, who are redefining folk music. If you like your traditional music with a generous dash of the contemporary read on:

Sam Lee

Sam Lee

Having apprenticed under the late Scottish Traveller and ballad singer Stanley Robertson as well as collecting and documenting music from the Romany Gypsy and Traveller communities of the British Isles and Ireland, UK singer Sam Lee seems to be the heir to the great folklorists of the late 19th and early 20th century. But there is something ultimately modern about the way Lee has distilled this traditional music on his debut album A Ground of Its Own which ultimately earned him a Mercury Prize nomination. His music is filled with unconventional instrumentation (or conventional instrumentation presented in an unconventional way) and sounds both timeless and fresh all at exactly the same time. Sam Lee is also involved in The Nest Collective folk club which promotes inovative folk music in London and even has its own show on Folk Radio UK.

Anaïs Mitchell

Anais Mitchell

Anaïs Mitchell’s latest album with folk singer Jefferson Hamer, Child Ballads, presents seven new versions of songs found in the collection of American folklorist Francis James Child. The album is beautiful and a must for fans of traditional music, but in itself doesn’t push too many boundaries when it comes to the presentation of these folk songs. What makes Mitchell special is her indie-folk pedigree and the audience that comes with that pedigree. Her 2010 “folk opera” album Hadestown, a retelling of the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice, saw Anaïs Mitchell working with some of the brightest lights in the indie folk scene including Justin Vernon (Bon Iver), Ani DiFranco, Ben Knox Miller (The Low Anthem) and Greg Brown. For many of those who discovered Anaïs Mitchell via Hadestown and her famous friends and subsequently followed her career from there, Child Ballads is their first introduction to this traditional music.

Sam Amidon

Sam Amidon

Sam Amidon doesn’t consider himself a conservationist when it comes to traditional music. The American-born, UK based singer is something of a folk alchemist – deconsructing traditional music to its bare bones and then rebuilding it into something completely new. Often he changes the melody of these songs, even more regularly he changes the words and in doing so the songs take on a new tone and in many cases a brand new meaning. While Amidon’s versions of familiar songs are so far from what traditionalists would be used to the process he uses to rebuild the songs is really what’s been happening in the folk tradition for hundreds of years.

Jenny M Thomas and The System

Jenny M Thomas

As a young country (at least as far as our European history is concerned) the Australian tradition is probably not as established as those of our UK and US cousins. But we do have our own canon of “bush” songs which have either been reinterpreted from old Irish and Scottish ballads, have come out of the shearing sheds and droving trails of the early pioneers or are taken from our rich history of bush poetry. Jenny M Thomas and The System have taken the existing Australian tradition and have spun it into something really dark, really contemporary and really unique on their album Bush Gothic. “here’s a stack of really fabulous and scary, horrific traditional songs of ours in Australia,” Jenny M Thomas told Timber and Steel’s Bill Quinn last year, “But usually when people play them … it’s very jolly”.



The influence that folk-big-band Bellowhead has had on contemporary audiences reconnecting with traditional music has been astounding. A favourite on not just the folk circuit in the UK but also at contemporary music festivals like Glastonbury, Bellowhead have taken traditional songs and given them an orchestral spin. The band is the brainchild of folk singing duo John Spiers and Jon Boden and boasts eleven members who all play an array of instruments, many of which would not be considered traditional “folk” instruments. There’s something quite soundtrack-like in the way Bellowhead arrange the traditional songs of their repertoire, as though they’ve been invited to turn folk songs into a rollicking Broadway musicial, and as such they’ve been embraced by a whole new generation of fans who may not have heard these songs otherwise.

For more information on Sounds of the South check out the official Vivid Festival site here.

Thank Folk It’s Friday – 1st March


This Week in Folk

All the News From The Week That Was

– This week’s live video from Passenger is the gorgeous “Hearts on Fire” featuring none other than Ed Sheeran. Details here

– Swedish trio Junip released the starkly beautiful video to their new track “Line of Fire”. Details here

– 90s Australian rock royalty collides in the excellent new video from Bob Evans, “Go”, featuring a cameo from Tim Rogers. Details here

– UK singer-songwriter Jess Morgan released her brand new video “Richer Thinner Smarter”. Details here

Sam Lee has teamed up with Future Cinema for a brand new video featuring his track “Goodbye My Darling”. Details here

– Queensland duo Laneway are packing their bags for Europe but have released a new video and some tour dates before they go. Details here

Sam Amidon has announced shows in Sydney and Melbourne over the coming week. Details here

– Brisbane duo Breaking Hart Benton are exploring their pop side in their brand new track and video “More Than You Deserve”, plus have a bunch of tour dates coming up. Details here

Cordial Factory have announced a headline show at the Northcote Social Club on the 16th March. Details here

– UK band The Willows posted the video for their track “Bella’s Fury” well over a month ago but we had to post it anyway. Details here

Beth Orton returns to our shores with a series of church dates thanks to Heavenly Sounds. Details here

Bobby Alu has announced a string of tour dates through March, April and May. Details here

Caitlin Rose revealed the video for her brand new single “Only A Clown”. Details here

– Melbourne bluegrass four-piece Mustered Courage have released “Cruel Alibis”, the first single from their highly anticipated new album. Details here

Mama Kin released the beautiful underwater video for her track “Rescue”. Details here


“I know some people get sick of playing their songs over and over but I just really love living in those songs. That’s when I feel most myself, when I’m on stage performing. Which is really artificial – I should probably get counseling or something” – Julia Johnson from Julia and the Deep Sea Sirens chats to Gareth Hugh Evans. Interview here

“In mid-January Timber and Steel contributing editor Bill Quinn (Overheard Productions) managed to sit down with Paul Greene at the Illawarra Folk Festival to discuss his upcoming tour with his band The Other Colours. Tragically a few days later Greene’s drummer and respected member of the Australian music Matt Sykes was involved in a fatal boating accident at Currarong, NSW” – we finally publish the audio of Paul Greene’s interview with Bill Quinn. Interview here



“The genius here is that these fresh arrangements and finely arranged harmonies, beguiling in their simplicity, offer something genuinely original. Lines written hundreds of years ago are made current, wounds reopened, magic rekindled and feuds renewed. Although these songs have crossed an ocean, and are played in a relaxed American folk style, the music has actually been strengthened by this displacement. Mitchell and Hamer have found a way to connect with each song and make it their own”Mackajay reviews Child Ballads from Anais Mitchell and Jefferson Hamer. Review here

Releases This Week

Keaton Henson
BirthdaysKeaton Henson

Melody Pool
The Hurting SceneMelody Pool

Thumbtacks and GlueWoodpigeon

Timber and Steel Presents

Julia and the Deep Sea Sirens with Nigel Wearne and James Kenyon
Sunday 3rd March – The Workers Club, Melbourne, VIC

Little Wise
Little Wise
Friday 1st March – Martain’s Cafe, Deans Marsh, VIC
Saturday 2nd March – Babushka Lounge, Ballarat, VIC

Gigs Next Week

Abigail Washburn and Kai Welch
Wednesday 6th March – The Cat and Fiddle, Sydney, NSW
Thursday 7th March – The Heritage Hotel, Bulli, NSW

Arlo Guthrie with Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion
Friday 1st March – Seymour Centre, Sydney, NSW
Saturday 2nd March – Judith Wright Centre, Brisbane, QLD
Sunday 3rd March – Star Court Theatre, Lismore, NSW
Tuesday 5th March – Twin Towns Services Club, Tweed Heads, NSW
Thursday 7th March – National Theatre, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 8th to Sunday 10th March – Port Fairy Folk Festival, Port Fairy, VIC

Breaking Hart Benton
Saturday 2nd March – Mandala Arts Cafe, Gold Coast, QLD
Friday 8th March – The Waiting Room, Brisbane, QLD (with O’Little Sister)

Brett Winterford
Friday 8th March – The Basement, Sydney, NSW

Don’t Mention The Wall
Friday 1st March – Tara Guest House, Sydney, NSW
Saturday 2nd March – The Shack, Narabeen, NSW
Friday 8th March – Humph Hall, Allambie Heights, NSW

Donavon Frankenreiter
Friday 1st March – Bateau Bay Hotel, Bateau Bay, NSW
Saturday 2nd March – SOL Bar, Maroochydore, QLD
Saturday 2nd March – Noosa SLSC, Noosa Heads, QLD
Sunday 3rd March – Story Bridge Hotel, Brisbane, QLD
Sunday 3rd March – Jubilee Hotel, Brisbane, QLD
Sunday 3rd March – Eaton’s Hill Hotel, Brisbane, QLD
Friday 8th March – Melbas, Surfers Paradise, QLD
Friday 8th March – Coolangatta Hotel, Coolangatta, QLD

Eli Wolfe
Thursday 7th March – Clancy’s Fish Pub, Fremantle, WA

Thursday 7th March – Oxford Art Factory, Sydney, NSW

Jordie Lane with The Yearlings
Friday 8th March – Harvester Moon, Bellarine, VIC

Katie Noonan
Thursday 7th March – Adelaide Fringe Festival, Adelaide, SA

Nannup Music Festival
Friday 1st to Monday 4th March – Nannup, WA

Neil Young and Crazy Horse
Saturday 2nd March – Perth Arena, Perth, WA
Tuesday 5th March – Adelaide Entertainment Centre, Adelaide, SA
Thursday 7th March – Brisbane Entertainment Centre, Brisbane, QLD

Nicola Hayes and Hélène Brunet
Sunday 3rd March – 303, Melbourne, VIC

Luka Bloom
Wednesday 6th March – The Gov, Adelaide, SA
Friday 8th March – Lizotte’s, Kincumber, NSW

Paul Greene and The Other Colours
Friday 1st March – The Queen St Mall Stage, Brisbane (7pm)
Saturday 2nd March – The Royal Mail Hotel, Goodna (12.30pm)
Saturday 2nd March – Joe’s Waterhole, Eumundi (8pm)
Sunday 3rd March – Hoey Moey, Coffs Harbour (4pm)

Paul Kelly and Neil Finn
Friday 1st March – Elder Park, Adelaide, SA
Saturday 2nd March – All Saints Winery, Rutherglen, VIC

Port Fairy Folk Festival
8th to 11th March – Port Fairy, VIC

Julia and the Deep Sea Sirens with Nigel Wearne and James Kenyon
Sunday 3rd March – The Workers Club, Melbourne, VIC

Sally Seltmann
Tuesday 5th March – Doveman’s Burgundy Stain Sessions, Adelaide Festival Centre, Adelaide, SA

Sam Amidon with Packwood
Wednesday 6th March – The Toff In the Town, Melbourne, VIC
Thursday 7th March – FBI Social Club, Sydney, NSW

Seth Lakeman
Thursday 7th March – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine, VIC
Friday 8th March – Port Fairy Folk Festival, Port Fairy, VIC

The Tallest Man on Earth
Friday 1st March – Perth International Arts Festival, Perth, WA
Sunday 3rd March – HiFi, Brisbane, QLD
Tuesday 5th March – Sydney Opera House, Sydney, NSW
Wednesday 6th March – Zierrholz, Canberra, ACT
Friday 8th March – WOMADelaide, Adelaide, SA

The Tiger and Me
Friday 1st March – Riverside Live, Melbourne, VIC

The Underscore Orkestra
Friday 8th March – Clancy’s Fish Pub, Fremantle, WA

Friday Folk Flashback

“The Parting Glass” – Ed Sheeran

We started the week explaining that we’d made a decision not to cover Ed Sheeran because he was probably a little too “pop” for Timber and Steel, although he’s probably a closet folky. This resulted in a number of readers pointing me in the direction of many an Ed Sheeran song that proves he’s a folky. Including his version of the traditional Irish/Scottish parting song “The Parting Glass” which appeared as a bonus track on his album +. Maybe we should start covering Ed Sheeran a little more from now on?

First Listen: Child Ballads, Anais Mitchell and Jefferson Hamer

photography by Jay Sansone

photography by Jay Sansone

Late one night at a folk festival many miles from anywhere,  the bar had been drained dry of Guinness by countless bearded folkies,  and I found myself posed a difficult challenge.  Musician Phil Beck had asked me to define exactly what Folk Music was exactly.  I slurred something difficult to understand but after honestly trying to understand me, Phil instead offered a simpler definition; folk music is simply music people have never stopped singing.  Folk music is, in short, music that people still want to listen to.

Child Ballads is the brand new Album from Anais Mitchell, this time teaming up with Jefferson Hamer.  Although some of the songs do indeed feature themes of babies and children the album is actually named after Sir Francis James Child, from whose five-volume The English and Scottish Popular Ballads these seven songs are culled.  The music is therefore not new, indeed you will have heard many of these songs in many guises before.

The genius here is that these fresh arrangements and finely arranged harmonies, beguiling in their simplicity, offer something genuinely original.  Lines written hundreds of years ago are made current, wounds reopened, magic rekindled and feuds renewed.  Although these songs have crossed an ocean, and are played in a relaxed American folk style,  the music has actually been  strengthened by this displacement.  Mitchell and Hamer have found a way to connect with each song and make it their own. Opening track “Willie of Winsbury” is a great English staple, heard many a time by this reviewer, yet here I found the many familiar voices coming to life in different and unexpected ways.

The standout track for me is “Tam Lin” whose magic unfurls slowly and quite frankly stuns in it’s simplicity.  Similarly, “Clyde Waters” sounds like it could have been written yesterday.  Hamer’s more precise and somehow traditional intonation and Mitchell’s more modern and huskier tones lend a balance and weight to the stories here, and the production of the entire album is remarkably consistent – allowing the music to breathe.

For the nu-folk listener; this is Trad you can play in public, and for the traditionalist – this is something that may surprise and delight.

We’ve heard all this before.  Many times.  But I still want to listen.

Child Ballads is out now from Wilderland Records. 

Thank Folk It’s Friday – 8th February


This Week in Folk

All the News From The Week That Was

Passenger revealed his latest new track, “Staring at the Sky”, in a live video featuring Stu Larsen and the legendary Ruby Turner. Details here

Wes Carr (or Buffalo Tales as he calls himself these days) hit the road this week for a tour of Victoria, Queensland and Northern New South Wales. Details here

– Sydney duo The Falls need your help to get to North America in March for Canadian Music Week and SXSW. Details here

– Some more details on the upcoming album from American folk-rock band Dawes have been revealed. Details here

– Award winning singer-songwriter Melody Pool will be launching her brand new album The Hurting Scene this month. Details here

– The new video from Woodpigeon, “Edinburgh”, from their upcoming album Thumbtacks and Glue hot the internet this week. Details here

– Singer-songwriters Jack Carty and Jordan Millar are hitting the road together for a massive national tour this March, April and May. Details here

– The shortlist for this year’s Australian Music Prize has been announced with acoustic/folk entries from Jess Ribeiro, Liz Stringer and Grand Salvo. Details here

The Tiger and Me have released “Made it to the Harbour”, the latest single from their album The Drifters Dawn. Details here

– A couple of tracks from the upcoming Anaïs Mitchell and Jefferson Hamer album Child Ballads have found their way online. Details here

Noah and the Whale have announced plans to release their forth studio album, titled Heart of Nowhere, this May. Details here

Jordie Lane is rolling a bunch of support slots, festival appearances and headline shows into a massive tour starting this March. Details here

FrogFest, Sydney’s mini-festival of progressive folk and roots music, has announced its 2013 lineup including The Barons of Tang, Takadimi, GrandMasterMonk and Dave Bova Band: Divina Commedia. Details here

– Swedish trio Junip have revealed a bunch of details about their upcoming self titled album including the album art, track list and a teaser video. Details here

Sally Seltmann will be performing shows in Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney this March to road test material for a new album. Details here

Turin Brakes have announced a single Sydney sideshow when they’re in the country for Gum Ball. Details here

The Lumineers have changed the venue of their sold out Sydney show to The Enmore and released more tickets. The Falls have been named in the support slot for the entire tour. Details here

Brighter Later have released their new video “Come and Go” featuring footage from 1970s wildlife documentaries. Details here

– Former Charlie Mayfair front man Dave Di Marco has just released the second single, “Unfold”, from his upcoming debut solo EP Deep and Down These Walls and announced an east coast tour in March. Details here


“Three of us are kind of the core band – that’s myself, Arlene Fletcher who plays double and electric bass and Megan Bernard on electric guitar. And then we’ve just gotten a drummer join us as well and he’s coming on all the legs of the tour except for South Australia – his name is Jordan Lockett. We’ve kind of evolved a little bit. I used to play as a solo, then it was a duo, then back to a solo. I recorded the album just myself with lots of guests – then for the launch I put together the full band and we played together for about eight months as a five piece. Then we’ve just had a bit of a lineup change in the last couple of months. I think it’s kind of found its natural settling of people who can be on the road a bit more” – Sophie Klein from Little Wise chats to Gareth Hugh Evans. Interview here



“Those afraid of a post-greatest-hits-lull will be disappointed, as this collaboration with master harmonica player Charlie Musselwhite carves out new sonic territory for Harper and contains some great songs to boot”Mackajay reviews Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite’s new album Get Up!. Review here

Releases This Week

Eli Wolfe
Perfect MomentEli Wolfe

Timber and Steel Presents

Little Wise
Little Wise
Friday 8th February – The Singing Gallery, McLaren Vale, SA
Saturday 9th February – The Wheatsheaf Hotel, Adelaide, SA
Sunday 10th February – The Old Mount Cambier Gaol, Mount Gambier, SA
Thursday 14th February – The Retreat, Brunswick, VIC
Friday 15th February – The Loft, Warrnambool, VIC

Nick and Liesl
Nick & Liesl w/ Evan & Mischa and Lucy Wise
Sunday 10th February – The Workers Club, Melbourne, VIC

Gigs Next Week

Brett Winterford
Saturday 9th February – Upfront Club, Maleny, QLD

Friday 8th February – Open Studio, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday 9th February – House Concert, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 15th February – The Merry Muse, Canberra, ACT

Deer Tick with Two Gallants
Friday 8th February – The Annandale, Sydney, NSW
Saturday 9th February – Northcote Social Club, Melbourne, VIC
Tuesday 12th February – International Arts Festival, Perth, WA

Don’t Mention The Wall
Friday 8th February – Gunnedah, NSW
Saturday 9th February – Uralla Arts, NSW
Sunday 10th February – Bellingen, NSW
Thursday 14th February – Congo, NSW (house concert)
Friday 15th February – River Music Folk, Nowra, NSW

Donavon Frankenreiter
Friday 8th February – Caves House Hotel, Yallingup, WA
Saturday 9th February – The Ocean Beach Hotel, Perth, WA
Saturday 9th February – Breakwater Hotel, Perth WA
Saturday 9th February – Ocean One Bar, Perth, WA
Sunday 10th February – Whistling Kite, Perth, WA
Friday 15th February – Woolshed Pub, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 15th February – Prince Of Wales, Melbourne, VIC

Julia Stone with Vance Joy
Thursday 14th February – St Stephen’s Uniting Church, Sydney, NSW
Friday 15th February – St John’s Cathedral, Brisbane, QLD

Justin Townes Earle with Robert Ellis
Friday 8th February – Heritage Hotel, Bulli, NSW
Saturday 9th February – Milton Theatre, Milton, NSW
Sunday 10th February – Annandale Hotel, Sydney, NSW
Wednesday 13th February – Lizottes, Newcastle, NSW
Friday 15th February – Capitol Theatre, Tamworth, NSW

Mustered Courage with Bill Jackson & Pete Fidler
Thursday 14th February – The Wesley Anne, Melbourne, VIC

Nick and Liesl
Saturday 9th February – Pure Pop Recordsm, St Kilda, VIC
Sunday 10th February – The Workers Club, Melbourne, VIC

Rory McLeod
Friday 8th February – Harvester Moon, Bellarine, Vic
Saturday 9th February – Spotted Mallard, Melbourne, Vic

Ruby Boots
Friday 8th February – Baha Taco, Rye, VIC
Saturday 9th February – The Workers Club, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 15 February – Perth International Arts Festival Gardens, Perth, WA

Sarah Blasko
Saturday 9th February – Queensland Performing Arts Centre, Brisbane, QLD
Thursday 14th February – Hamer Hall, Melbourne, VIC

The April Maze
Saturday 9th February – Kuranda Ampitheatre, Kuranda, QLD
Thursday 14th February – Townsville Folk Club, Townsville, QLD

The Wooden Music Festival feat. The Perch Creek Family Jug Band, The Quarry Mountain Dead Rats, The Bearded Gypsy Band
Friday 8th February – Diggers Club, Wollongong, NSW
Saturday 9th February -The Vanguard, Sydney, NSW
Sunday 10th February – The Clarendon Guesthouse, Katoombe, NSW
Friday 15th February – Beetle Bar, Brisbane, QLD

Wes Carr
Friday 8th February – The Brewery, Byron Bay, NSW
Saturday 9th February – The Loft, Gold Coast, QLD
Wednesday 13th February – Workers Club, Melbourne, VIC
Thursday 14th February – Baha Tacos, Rye, VIC
Friday 15th February – Wellers Restaurant, Kangaroo Grounds, VIC

Friday Folk Flashback

“Sunshower” – The Little Stevies

Next week The Little Stevies will be launching their live album Most Requested at The Workers Club, featuring their new lineup (sans Robin). We thought this was as good a reason as any to post the song that made us fall in love with the band in the first place.

Listen to a Couple of Tracks from Anaïs Mitchell and Jefferson Hamer’s Upcoming Album

Anais Mitchell
Image Courtesy of Anaïs Mitchell

The upcoming collaborative album of traditional songs from Anaïs Mitchell and Jefferson Hamer, Child Ballads, is due to be released on the 19th March. All the songs on the album are taken from a collection of songs by Francis James Child (hence the title) and a couple of them have made their way online.

First of all there’s the opening track “Willie of Winsbury (Child 100)”:

And then there’s the 6th track “Geordie (Child 209)”:

We can’t tell you how excited we are for this album. Bring on March!

Thank Folk It’s Friday – 11th January


This Week in Folk

All the News From The Week That Was

Timber and Steel are proud to be presenting the upcoming tour from Melbourne trio Little Wise. Details here

Anaïs Mitchell and collaborator Jefferson Hamer will be releasing an album of traditional ballads taken from the Francis James Child collection, due this March. Details here

– Sydney singer-songwriter Sam Buckingham shot the video for her track “Let’s Go Home” on a phone while she was at the Peats Ridge Festival over new year. Details here

– Adelaide singer-songwriter Kaurna Cronin has revealed a brand new track, “Run Boy”, via a video shot live in the secret underground tunnels under Victoria Square. Details here

– Aussie-Swedish folk duo Nick and Liesl have announced plans to release a brand new EP, Friend and Lover, and have a bunch of East Coast tour dates through February and March. Details here

Matt Walters continues the trend of indie-folk videos of the artist walking through the woods with his latest single “I Would Die For You”. Details here

– The 2013 Port Fairy Folk Festival has added a bunch more artists including Xavier Rudd, Mustered Courage and The Stillsons. Details here

– Intimate Sydney venue The Newsagency is presenting a very special songwriting workshop in February featuring Sarah Humphreys, Jack Carty and Alison Avron. Details here

– On the 1st February Country Roads hits the Vanguard in Sydney for a night of folk, country and bluegrass featuring Bellyache Ben and the Steamgrass Boys, The Green Mohair Suits, The River and the Road and All Our Exes Live In Texas. Details here

Luka Bloom will be touring the country in March after already being confirmed for the Blue Mountains Music Festival and Bluesfest. Details here

– The Northern Beaches Music Festival will be holding a pop-up fundraiser this Sunday in Sydney featuring RAPT trio feat. Ben Palumbo, Spasm Band, Renny Field and Ryan Collings. Details here

Crooked Still banjo player Greg Liszt also plays with experimental jam-folk five piece The Deadly Gentlemen who have just released their new single – a cover of Vampire Weekend’s “The Kids Don’t Stand A Chance”. Details here

– Sydney indie-folk quartet Tin Sparrow have released their first ever official music video, the zombie film inspire “The Beast”. Details here

The Lumineers treated us to a live video covering Bob Dylan’s classic “Boots of Spanish Leather”. Details here

– The Cobargo Folk Festival has a pretty exciting lineup this year including David Ross Macdonald, Don’t Mention The Wall, Kim Churchill, Martin Pearson, Modhan, The Bon Scotts, The Perch Creek Family Jug Band (above), Vin Garbutt and many many more. Details here

– Nashville based singer-songwriter Caitlin Rose has released another track from her forthcoming album The Stand-In titled “I Was Cruel”. Details here


“I’ve been playing music my whole life. I really started taking it serious a few years ago. I put out an album called False Alarm. I had a lot of success with that; had it featured in a big show that was all over the world, and went to number one iTunes”Andy Brown chats to Bill Quinn. Interview here

“The festival! Wonderful! We’ve got our program up, and we’re just doing our last scheduling with the last few volunteers, trying to fill in a few gaps. But looking absolutely fantastic. I’ve got a taste of a few of the artists at Woodford Folk Festival when I was there — it’s looking absolutely magnificent.”Illawarra Folk Festival Artistic Director David de Santi chats to Bill Quinn. Interview here

Spotlight On

Melody Pool

Melody Pool

“Hailing from the Hunter Valley in NSW Melody Pool’s music is equal parts country and folk and she has one of those voices you just want to listen to for hours. My first reaction to Pool’s music was how strongly it resembled that of Laura Marling (a fact not lost on the reviewers on her Unearthed Page) but upon listening to her Awake, You’re All Around Me EP more closely it’s clear that she is more than a Marling clone weaving elements of country and indie music throughout her songs”Spotlight on Melody Pool here

Releases This Week

Dropkick Murphys
Signed and Sealed in BloodDropkick Murphys

Gigs Next Week

Davidson Brothers and Mustered Courage
Friday 11th January – The Wesley Anne, Melbourne, VIC

Don’t Mention The Wall
Thursday 17th January – Camelot Lounge, Sydney, NSW
18th to 20th January – Illawarra Folk Festival, Bulli, NSW

East Coast Canadian Showcase feat. Andy Brown, Dave Gunning
Friday 11th January – Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh, VIC

Illawarra Folk Festival
Thursday 17th to Sunday 20th Januray – Bulli, NSW

Kim Churchill
Friday 11th January – Heritage Hotel, Wollongong, NSW
Saturday 12th January – The Basement, Sydney, NSW
Friday 18th January – Clancy’s Fish Pub, Fremantle, WA

Lachlan Bryan
Wednesday 16th January – The Retreat Hotel, Melbounre, VIC

Lianne La Havas
Friday 18th January – The Famous Spiegeltent, Sydney, NSW

Northern Beaches Music Festival Pop-Up Fundraiser feat. RAPT Trio feat. Ben Palumbo, Spasm Band, Renny Field and Ryan Collings
Saturday 12th January – William Street Studios, Sydney, NSW

Sam Buckingham
Friday 11th January – Moree Plains Gallery, Moree, NSW

Sharon Shannon
Friday 11th January – The Spotted Mallard, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday 12th January – The Spotted Mallard, Melbourne, VIC

The April Maze
Saturday 12th January – The Glass Onion Society, Longjety, NSW

The Mouldy Lovers
Friday 11th January – Notes Live, Sydney, NSW
Saturday 12th January – Phoenix Bar, Canberra, ACT
Sunday 13th January – The Wesley Anne, Melbourne, VIC
Thursday 17th January – Bon Amici’s, Toowoomba, QLD
Friday 18th January – The Zoo, Brisbane, QLD

Tin Sparrow
Friday 11th January – Front Gallery Cafe, Canberra, ACT
Saturday 12th January – Yours and Owls, Wollongong, NSW

Friday Folk Flashback

“No Gods (and Precious Few Heroes)” – Dick Gaughan

This week’s FFF is dedicated to sometime Timber and Steel contributor MackaJay who was obsessed with this song for some time. Originally written by Brian McNeill (Battlefield Band), I’ve chosen Dick Gaughan’s version for the man’s amazing voice (and the fact it was featured on the very first podcast from The Mike Harding Folk Show).

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