Thank Folk It’s Friday – 31st May


This Week in Folk

All the News From The Week That Was

– Our latest New Music Monday featured new streams and videos from the likes of Chance McCoy, Emma Beau, Glen Hansard, Hannah Blackburn, Jordie Lane & Yirrmal, Lucie Thorne, Passenger, Seeker Lover Keeper, The Lumineers and The Pigs. Listen and watch them here

Releases This Week

Luke Plumb
Luke Plumb & Kate BurkeLuke Plumb & Kate Burke

Timber and Steel Recommends – Go To This Gig

Diamond Duck with Strings

Diamond Duck

Saturday 1st June – The Vanguard, Sydney, NSW

Gigs Next Week

99 Stories Singer/Songwriter Showcase feat. Jordan Kenny, Justin Webber, Andy Calvert, Pearl Herbert, Kieran Morris, Paul Mason, Rhyen, Claudie Grace, Nat James, Rita B, Leroy Lee
Saturday 1st June – Staves Brewery, Sydney, NSW

Andy Golledge, Caitlin Harnett & Ruben Neeson
Saturday 1st June – Station Bar, Katoomba, NSW

Archie Roach
Friday 31st May – Centenary Square, Parramatta, NSW
Saturday 1st June – Meeanjin Markets, Brisbane, QLD

Ash Grunwald
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – Perisher Peak Festival, Perisher, NSW

Barunga Festival
Friday 7th June to Sunday 9th June – Barunga, NT

Friday 7th June – QPAC, Brisbane, QLD

Big Sky Mountain
Thursday 6th June – Smith’s Alternative, Canberra, ACT

Bobby Alu
Thursday 6th to Saturday 8th June – Palm Creek Folk Festival, Mount Surround, QLD

Bonnie Kay and the Bonafides
Sunday 2nd June – Collaroy Beach Club, Sydney, NSW

Bush Gothic
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

Cat Canteri
Saturday 1st June – Macedon Railway Hotel, Macedon, VIC
Thursday 6th June – The Tote, Melbourne, VIC

Chris Neto
Friday 31st May – Beatdisc Records, Sydney, NSW

Cigány Weaver
Thursday 6th to Sunday 9th June – Palm Creek Folk Festival, Mount Surround, QLD

Clare Bowditch
Friday 7th June – Powerhouse Theatre, Brisbane, QLD

Claude Hay
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – Perisher Peak Festival, Perisher, NSW

Tuesday 4th June – The Grace Darling, Melbourne, VIC

Colin Lillie
Friday 31st May – Ettalong Diggers, Ettalong, NSW
Saturday 1st June – Laurieton Services Club, Laurieton, NSW
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

Daniel Champagne
Friday 31st May – Conservatorium Chapel, Tamworth, NSW
Saturday 1st June – Metro Social, Katoomba, NSW
Sunday 2nd June – Birdhouse, Wagga Wagga, NSW
Wednesday 5th June – T Guitars, Bowral, NSW
Thursday 6th June – RAD, Wollongong, NSW
Friday 7th June – Factory, Sydney, NSW

Dave Wright & The Midnight Ramblers
Saturday 1st June – The Drunken Poet, Melbourne, VIC

David Bridie
Saturday 1st June · Chapel off Chapel, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 7th June · Trinity Sessions, Adelaide, SA

Diamond Duck with Strings
Saturday 1st June – The Vanguard, Sydney, NSW

Felicity Urquhart & Brad Butcher
Friday 31st May – Hardy’s Bay Community Club, Hardy’s Bay, NSW
Saturday 1st June – Acoustic Picnic, Dee Why, NSW

Fiona Ross and Shane O’Mara
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

Folk and Fire feat. STAV, Corey Theatre
Saturday 1st June – Nexus Arts, Adelaide, SA

Folk Like Us feat. Ally Palmer, Phil & Tilley, Rhiannon, Andaman, Hollie Col
Sunday 2nd June – The Soda Factory, Sydney, NSW

FolkSwagon feat. Harley Mavis, Tess Guthrie, Sam Joole
Wednesday 5th June – Cafe Lounge, Sydney, NSW

Friends & Acquaintances End Of Tour Party feat. Lachlan Bryan & The Wildes, Ben Leece, The Good the Beard & the Ugly, Georgia State Line, Freya Josephine Hollick, The Weeping Willows, Kate Alexander, Hana Breneck
Sunday 2nd June – Billyroy’s Grassroots Music Club, Allsaints, Bendigo, VIC

Giffen Play Paul Simon feat. Zeke Cameron
Friday 31st May – Tomerong School of the Arts, Tomerong, NSW
Saturday 1st June – House Concert, Little Forest, NSW
Sunday 2nd June – Lord Roberts Hotel, Sydney, NSW

Gretta Ziller
Thursday 6th June – Oodies Café, Bundaberg, QLD
Friday 7th June – Captain Cook Holiday Village, Seventeen Seventy, QLD

Grizzlee Train
Saturday 1st June – Avoca Beach Hotel, Avoca Beach, NSW
Thursday 6th June – Slyfox, Sydney, NSW

Handsome Young Strangers, Eddie Lawlor
Sunday 2nd June – Union Hotel, Sydney, NSW

Sunday 2nd June – Servo Food Truck Bar, Port Kembla, NSW
Thursday 6th June – City Recital Hall, Sydney, NSW

Honky Tonkin’ feat. King Arthur
Thursday 6th June – The Rook’s Return, Melbourne, VIC

Huck Hastings
Saturday 1st June – The Dock, Sydney, NSW

Hussy Hicks
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – Perisher Peak Festival, Perisher, NSW

JD And The Hunger Men w/ Demi Mitchell
Friday 7th June – The Junkyard, Maitland, NSW

John Flanagan String Band
Saturday 1st June – Wesley Anne, Melbourne, VIC

Jordan Merrick
Friday 7th June – The Junk Bar, Brisbane, QLD

Julian James
Friday 31st May – KCs Bar and Grill, Airlie Beach, QLD
Saturday 1st June – KCs Bar and Grill, Airlie Beach, QLD
Sunday 2nd June – Seabreeze Tavern, Mackay, QLD
Friday 7th June – Snack Shack, Tin Pan Bay, QLD

Justin Bernasconi
Saturday 1st June – Macedon Railway Hotel, Macedon, VIC

Kay Proudlove
Thursday 6th June – Jose Jones, Thirroul, NSW

Keaton Henson: Six Lethargies with the Opera Australia Orchestra
Friday 31st May – Sydney Opera House, Sydney, NSW

Kim Churchill
Friday 7th June – Oxford Art Factory, Sydney, NSW

Kristen Lee Morris
Thursday 6th June – Slyfox, Sydney, NSW

Lachlan Bryan & The Wildes w/ Ben Leece
Friday 31st May – Caravan Music Club, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday 1st June – Rezza House Concert, Melbourne, VIC
Sunday 2nd June – Billyroy’s Grassroots Music Club, Allsaints, Bendigo, VIC

Lee Coulter & Dixie Maxwell
Friday 31st May – Spotted Mallard, Melbourne, VIC
Wednesday 5th June – Smiths Alternative, Canberra, ACT
Thursday 6th June – The Brass Monkey, Cronulla, NSW
Friday 7th June – Heritage Hotel, Bulli, NSW

Lucie Thorne & Hamish Stuart
Friday 7th June – Merri Creek Tavern, Melbourne, VIC

Lucy Rose
Tuesday 4th June – The Foundry, Brisbane, QLD
Wednesday 5th June – The Factory Theatre, Sydney, NSW
Thursday 6th June – Northcote Social Club, Melbourne, VIC

M.E. Baird
Saturday 1st June – Merri Creek Tavern, Melbourne, VIC

Maggie Carty and Mairtin Staunton
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

Melbourne Scottish Fiddle Club
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

Miriam Lieberman
Thursday 6th to Sunday 9th June – Palm Creek Folk Festival, Mount Surround, QLD

Mustered Courage
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – Perisher Peak Festival, Perisher, NSW

Natalie Henry
Friday 31st May – Wheatsheaf Hotel, Adelaide, SA

National Celtic Festival
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – Portarlington, VIC

Neil Murray
Saturday 1st June – The Hungry Spirit, Lightning Ridge, NSW

Palm Creek Folk Festival
Thursday 6th to Sunday 9th June – Mountain View Lake Holiday Park, Mount Surround, QLD

Paul Kelly
Saturday 1st June – City Recital Hall, Sydney, NSW

Perisher Peak Festival
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – Perisher, NSW

Rach Brennan & The Pines
Friday 31st May – Howlin’ Wolf, Wollongong, NSW
Saturday 1st June – Karova Lounge, Ballarat, VIC

Rezza House Concerts feat. Lachlan Bryan & The Wildes w/ Ben Leece
Saturday 1st June – House Concert, Melbourne, VIC

Rich Davies and the Low Road
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

Friday 31st May – Crown & Anchor, Adelaide, SA
Saturday 1st June – Sewing Room, Perth, WA

Rosie Burgess Trio
Thursday 6th to Sunday 9th June – Palm Creek Folk Festival, Mount Surround, QLD

Russell Morris
Friday 31st May – QPAC Concert Hall, Brisbane, QLD
Sunday 1st June – Twin Towns, Tweed Heads, NSW
Sunday 2nd June – Twin Towns, Tweed Heads, NSW
Friday 7th June – Wrest Point Entertainment Centre, Hobart, TAS

Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

Sea Shanty Session
Wednesday 5th June – The Brother’s Public House, Melbourne, VIC

Señor Cabrales
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

Sharon Van Etten
Saturday 1st June – Sydney Opera House, Sydney, NSW
Friday 7th June – QPAC, Brisbane, QLD

Slim Dime, Blue Limit
Thursday 6th June – The Main Bar, Ballarat, VIC
Friday 7th June – South Coast Brewing Co., Willunga, SA

Southern Flavour
Sunday 3rd June – Gasoline Pony, Sydney, NSW

Sydney Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Get-Together
Saturday 1st June – Annandale Community Centre, Sydney, NSW

Teeny Tiny Stevies
Saturday 1st June – The Melba Spiegeltent, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday 1st June – The Melba Spiegeltent, Melbourne, VIC

The Grubby Urchins
Wednesday 5th June – The Borthers Public House, Melbourne, VIC
Thursday 6th to Sunday 9th June – Palm Creek Folk Festival, Mount Surround, QLD

The Hillbilly Goats
Sunday 2nd June – The Bearded Dragon Hotel, Tamborine, QLD

The Maes
Friday 31st May – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine, VIC
Sunday 2nd June – Northcote Social Club, Melbourne, VIC
Friday 7th June – Music on the Hill, Red Hill Pavilion, Red Hill, VIC
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

The Mid-North
Friday 31st May – Old Butter Factory Cafe, Bellingen, NSW

The Pigs
Friday 31st May – Highfields Tavern, Toowoomba, QLD
Saturday 1st June – Racehorse Hotel, Ipswich, QLD

The Slipdixies
Sunday 2nd June – Open Studio, Melbourne, VIC

The Spooky Men’s Chorale
Friday 31st May – Newcastle City Hall, Newcastle, NSW
Saturday 1st June – Seymour Centre, Sydney, NSW

The Water Runners
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – Perisher Peak Festival, Perisher, NSW

The Young Folk
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

Tim Scanlan Trio
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – National Celtic Festival, Portarlington, VIC

Top Half Folk Festival
Friday 7th to Sunday 9th June – Glen Helen, NT

Vaudeville Smash
Friday 7th to Monday 10th June – Perisher Peak Festival, Perisher, NSW

Z-Star Trinity
Friday 31st May – The J, Noosa, QLD
Saturday 1st June – RoyalMail, Goodna, QLD
Sunday 2nd June – Maroochydore Rotary Club Park, Maroochydore, QLD
Wednesday 5th June – Langford’s Hotel, Mackay, QLD
Thursday 6th to Sunday 9th June – Palm Creek Folk Festival, Mount Surround, QLD

Zumpa, All Strings Attached, Lizzie Flynn
Saturday 1st June – Imperial Hotel, Eumundi, QLD

Friday Folk Flashback

“Lock Keeper” – Greg Russell and Ciaran Algar

New Music Monday – 27th May

Jordie and Yirramal
Image Courtesy of Jordie Lane and Yirrmal

Chance McCoy – “Lonesome Pines”

More new music from Old Crow Medicine Show multi-instrumentalist Chance McCoy’s solo project, this time the dreamy “Lonesome Pines”. Straddling somewhere between Neil Young and The Doors, “Lonesome Pines” is definitely a departure from his last single “No One Loves You (The Way That I Do)” and definitely a stark contrast to his Old Crow output.

Emma Beau – “Leading Me Astray”

Go-to country fiddle player Emma Beau is showing off just how talented a songwriter she is with the release of her new single and video “Leading Me Astray”. This is Beau’s latest taste from her crowd-funded self-titled alum due for release on the 28th June, and may favourite so far – I can definitely hear overtones of Joy Williams (The Civil Wars) in her vocal delivery and I’m loving the simple country production choices throughout.

“This track explains a relationship,” Emma Beau explained. “The start, present, and future, and the quirks of the time spent together, particularly the notion that someone can lead you away from the life you may have imagined – and that’s a good thing.”

Glen Hansard – “Don’t Settle”

Irish troubadour Glen Hansard released “Don’t Settle” this week, his piano driven new single from the album This Wild Willing. If you’ve been enjoying the direction Hansard’s songwriting has been taking recently then you’ll love this track. It’s emotional and lyric driven with a jazz inspired undertone and beautiful production.

Hannah Blackburn – “Did You Always Know”

Melbourne singer-songwriter Hannah Blackburn released her brand new single “Did You Always Know” last week and I’m really digging it. The retro feel coupled with Blackburn’s beautiful voice is going to elicit comparisons to Julia Jacklin – and that should definitely be taken as a compliment. A singer-songwriter to be watched.

Jordie Lane & Yirrmal – “For Everyone”

To kick off National Reconciliation Week this week singer-songwriters Jordie Lane and Yirrmal have come together to release their new single and video “For Everyone”. The song charts the journey of young indigenous man Clinton Pryor who walked 6,000km from Perth to Canberra to meet with the Prime Minister and stand for Justice of indigenous people.

The talents of both Jordie Lane and Yirrmal are undeniable and this track celebrates both of their unique voices.

Lucie Thorne – “Wheogo Hill”

Celebrated singer-songwriter Lucie Thorne has announced her new album Kitty & Frank will be in our ears on the 10th August and has released the dreamy, spacious “Wheogo Hill” as a welcome appetiser. With ambient synths, jazzy piano and Thorne’s captivating vocal style, this track is going to completely draw you in.

Lucie Thorne is heading out on tour with long time collaborator Hamish Stuart this June – check out the dates here:

Friday 7th June – Merri Creek Tavern, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday 8th June – Merri Creek Tavern, Melbourne, VIC
Thursday 13th June – Dusty Attic, Lismore, NSW
Friday 14th June – House Concert, Duranbah, NSW
Sunday 16th June – House Concert, Brisbane, QLD
Friday 21st June – House Concert, Mittagong, NSW
Saturday 22nd June – Smiths Alternative, Canberra, ACT
Sunday 23rd June – Django @ Camelot, Sydney, NSW

Passenger – “Rosie”

With a bunch of artists sharing songs and videos inspired by their children lately its also nice to see an artist like Passenger creating a piece of art to celebrate that other special person in his life – his cat Rosie.

Passenger describes the video for the track “Rosie” as “possibly the silliest and definitely the most adorable video we’ve ever released” – and I’ve watched it now more times than I care to admit.

Seeker Lover Keeper – “Let It Out”

Australia’s premiere super-group Seeker Lover Keeper, made up of the amazingly talented Sarah Blasko, Sally Seltmann and Holly Throsby, have made a triumphant return this week with the release of their new single “Let It Out”. The track is the group’s first in eight years and features a stunning video featuring Australian acting legend Magda Szubanski.

What I’ve always loved about Seeker Lover Keeper is just how raw their music is, and its ability to celebrate the unique voices of Blasko, Seltmann and Throsby while also bringing them together to create something unique. “Let It Out” is no different, with the trio’s beautuful vocals weaving in and out over the minimal accompaniment.

Seeker Lover Keeper have announced a couple of intimate shows this July:

Friday 12th July – Lansdowne Hotel, Sydney, NSW
Saturday 13th July – Northcote Social Club, Melbourne, VIC

The Lumineers – “Gloria”

We finally have some new music from indie-folk favourites The Lumineers with their track “Gloria”. The song is the first from the band’s upcoming full-length album III, due on the 13th September, and is full of the footstomping goodness you’ve come to expect from The Lumineers.

“Gloria” is the first in a series of 3 videos released by the band over the last week – you can watch “Donna” here and “Life In The City” here. Collectively they tell the visual story of 3 generations of the same family.

The Lumineers will be in the country later this year for Splendour in the Grass as well as a single intimate show in Sydney – dates below:

Friday 19th to Sunday 21st July – Splendour in the Grass, Byron Bay, NSW
Monday 22nd July – Enmore Theatre, Sydney, NSW

The Pigs – “Olive, Call Me”

You know you’re going to be in for a chuckle when there’s new music from Bluegrass larrikins The Pigs, and their latest single “Olive, Call Me” doesn’t disappoint. The track details the way a romantic rival may accidentally die and is darkly hilarious.

“I’ve realised that I don’t stand a chance with Olive, because this guy is perfect for her in every way,” explains Stretch Pig from the band. “And you know, I don’t wish him any harm. I’m just sayin’ that if he gets hit by a runaway Winnebago some day, I’m good to go.”

The track is taken from The Pigs’ latest album Hillbilly Synthesiser. The band are, as always, touring the country – you can catch them at one of these upcoming Queensland dates:

Friday 31st May – Highfields Tavern, Toowoomba, QLD
Saturday 1st May – Racehorse Hotel, Ipswich, QLD
Friday 21st June – South Kolan Hotel, South Kolan, QLD
Saturday 22nd June – D’Aguilar Hotel, D’Aguilar, QLD
Friday 12th July – Black Bear Lodge, Brisbane, QLD
Saturday 13th July – Bush To Bay Music Festival, Hervey Bay, QLD

WOMADelaide Announces Full Lineup for 2018

Image Courtesy of WOMADelaide

Following on from their first round announcement last month WOMADelaide have this week dropped their entire 2018 program and it’s absolutely huge.

Joining the likes of Le Vent du Nord, Rodrigo y Gabriela and Yirrmal next year will be Scottish neo-Trad quintet Elephant Sessions, country-blues favourites Hat Fitz & Cara, roots collaboration Mama Kin Spender, Australian legends Tex, Don & Charlie, local alt-country duo Hana & Jessie-Lee’s Bad Habits, indigenous collective Mission Songs Project, Adelaide folk-pop singer Naomi Keyte and so much more.

WOMADelaide takes place at the Adelaide Botanic Park from the 9th to the 12th March. For more information including how to get your hands on tickets check out the official site here.

The full lineup announced so far is below:

a Bit na Ta (PNG/Aust), Abbey Howlett (Aust), Ackroyd & Harvey (UK), Adrian Sherwood (UK), Anoushka Shankar (India/UK), Architects of Air (UK), The Avalanches (Aust), Baker Boy (Aust), Bashka (Turkey/Aust), Bedouine (USA/Syria), Cie Bivouac (France), Bixiga 70 (Brazil), Blick Bassy (France/Cameroon), Chico Trujillo (Chile), Constantinople & Ablaye Cissoko (Canada/Iran/Senegal), Dan Sultan (Aust), Daymé Arocena (Cuba), Deborah Conway (Aust), Didirri (Aust), DJ Marky (Brazil), Dustyesky (Aust), Elephant Sessions (Scotland), Eva Quartet (Bulgaria), Francois Knoetze (Sth Africa), Ghada Shbeir (Lebanon), Gogol Bordello (USA), Gratte Ciel (France), Hana & Jessie-Lee’s Bad Habits (Aust), Hartway (Aust), Hat Fitz & Cara (Ireland/Aust), Havana Meets Kingston (Cuba/Jamaica), Hypnotic Brass Ensemble (USA), JAZZ Party (Aust), Jojo Abot (Ghana), Justine Clarke (Aust), Kamasi Washington (USA), Kings & Associates (Aust), Le Vent du Nord (Canada), Lonelyspeck (Aust), Lura (Cape Verde), Mama Kin Spender (Aust), The Manganiyar Seduction (India), Mission Songs Project (Aust), Moussa Diakite & Wassado (Mali/Aust), My Bubba (Sweden/Iceland), Nai Palm (Aust), Nano Stern (Chile), Naomi Keyte (Aust), Nature Village (Aust), Nickodemus (USA), Noura Mint Seymali (Mauritania), Pat Thomas & Kwashibu Area Band (Ghana), Peanut Butter Wolf (USA), Cie Pernette (France), The Pin (Aust), POW! Negro (Aust), Rahim AlHaj Trio (Iraq), Rajab Suleiman & Kithara (Zanzibar), Remi x Sampa (Aust), Robyn Davidson in Conversation w/ Roysten Abel (India/Aust), Rodrigo y Gabriela (Mexico), San Lazaro (Aust), Soul Capoeira (Aust), Tank & The Bangas (USA), TAO Dance Theatre (China), Tex, Don & Charlie (Aust), Thievery Corporation (USA), Thundercat (USA), Tim Whitt (Aust), Tinariwen (Mali), Victoria Hanna (Israel), Violons Barbares (France/Mongolia/Bulgaria), Yellow Blue Bus (Aust), YID! (Aust), Yirrmal & the Miliyawutj (Aust)

WOMADelaide Announces First Lineup for 2018

Image Courtesy of WOMADelaide

Australian world music festival WOMADelaide returns in 2018 and has just dropped a huge first lineup announcment.

The first artists added to the 2018 WOMADelaide festival include Candian Québécois favourites Le Vent du Nord, Mexican flamenco rockers Rodrigo y Gabriela, sitar legend Anoushka Shankar, Australian rocker Dan Sultan, indigenous singer-songwriter Yirrmal & the Miliyawutj Band and many more.

WOMADelaide takes place at the Adelaide botanic park from the 9th to the 12th March. For more information including how to get your hands on tickets check out the official site here.

The full lineup announced so far is below:

Adrian Sherwood (UK), Anoushka Shankar (UK / India), The Avalanches (Aust), Bixiga 70 (Brazil), Chico Trujillo (Chile), Dan Sultan (Aust), Daymé Arocena (Cuba), Havana Meets Kingston (Cuba / Jamaica), Kamasi Washington (USA), Le Vent du Nord (Canada), Noura Mint Seymali (Mauritania), Pat Thomas & Kwashibu Area band (Ghana), Rahim Alhaj Trio (Iraq), Rodrigo y Gabriela (Mexico), Tinariwen (Mali), Violons Barbares (France / Mongolia / Bulgaria), Yirrmal & the Miliyawutj Band (Aust).

Review: First Annual Australian Americana Honours Night

Americana Honours
Image Courtesy of the Americana Music Association

Australian Americana Honours Night feat. Old Crow Medicine Show, Valerie June, Kevin Welch, Busby Marou, Kasey Chambers, Shane Howard, Yirrmal, Bernard Fanning, Catherine Britt, Henry Wagons, Emily Barker, Ruby Boots, Jordie Lane & The Sleepers
Thornbury Theatre, Melbourne, VIC
Monday 2nd October, 2017

Like many people I woke up Tuesday morning to the horrible news that an evil individual had killed dozens and injured hundreds of people in a mass shooting in Las Vegas. What’s really hit home about this latest atrocity is that it was committed at the Route 91 Harvest country music festival – a festival not unlike the festivals the Timber and Steel community attends all the time here in Australia. Words cannot describe the emotions I’m feeling right now. It’s senseless, just senseless.

As the events in Vegas were unfolding on Monday night night I was sitting in the warm confines of Melbourne’s Thornbury Theatre for the first annual Australian Americana Honours Night. It was a coming together of the Australian Americana community and a celebration of a genre that has so much heart and soul behind it. As so often happens with these events I was overwhelmed with the community that’s been created around the music we love.

From the opening marching-band entrance of Old Crow Medicine Show’s live version of “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35” to the closing singalong of “May The Circle Be Unbroken” featuring Old Crow, Valerie June, Kasey Chambers and Kevin Welch, the Australian Americana Honours Night was pure joy from start to finish.

Americana Honours

It would be too easy to look at the events in Vegas and decide that you’re not going to music festivals anymore. Despite how irrational it is, despite the fact that hundreds, if not thousands of festivals are held around the world every year without incident, it would be easy to walk away from live music.

If it wasn’t for the Australian Americana Honours Night last night maybe I would have made the easy decision and walked away from live music festivals. At the very least maybe I would’ve reconsidered my bucket list of international festivals, striking all off the US-based events.

But when you’re listening to Kasey Chambers and Bernard Fanning duet on “Watch Over Me”, when you can feel the goosebumps from Yirrmal’s surprise performance with Shane Howard, when Henry Wagons literally owns the entire stage while performing “King Hit”, when artists you’ve been following and supporting for years like Ruby Boots, Emily Barker, Catherine Britt, Jordie Lane and Busby Marou get roaring applause from the gathered fans and industry folk, you know there’s no way you can give this up.

Americana Honours

Kasey Chambers and Brian “BT” Taranto were both honoured with vanguard awards on the night and both of them gave passionate speeches about how important Americana music is. How much the community means. To me it was almost a call to arms – a plea to keep the candle burning for good music. To keep going to festivals, to gigs, to keep buying records and to keep the passion alive.

When I woke up Tuesday morning, before I turned to my smart phone, before I knew the full extent of what had happened in Las Vegas, I was still buzzing from the Australian Americana Honours Night, and the 3+ hours of amazing music I’d witnessed the night before. And even as the world came crashing down around me as I scrolled through the news it wasn’t enough to extinguish the light that is burning for live music.

The best way to not let the bastards win? Keep going to live music. Keep going to festivals. Show your support, be part of the community of amazing people who keep this music alive, and enjoy every minute of it.

Thank you Australian Americana Honours.

Final Queenscliff Music Festival Lineup Additions Announced

Image Courtesy of Queenscliff Music Festival

The fifth and final Queenscliff Music Festival artist announcement dropped this week and we couldn’t be more excited for this year’s festival.

Heading up the latest round of artists is the legendary and award winning Russell Morris, bringing his extensive back catalogue plus his latest Blues Trilogy numbers to the stage.

Joining Morris will be Andrea Robertson Band, Bec Goring, Didirri, Heath Robertson Band, Hey Mammoth, Izzy Losi & The Auracles, Rough River, Sagamore, Sweethearts, The Refuge, Tides of Welcome, Tom Richardson, True Spirit Revival Yoga and Yirrmal & The Miliyawutj.

These artists will be joining the likes of The East Pointers, Irish Mythen, Lindi Ortega, Bernard Fanning, Mama Kin & Spender, The Teskey Brothers, Xavier Rudd, Bob Evans, Hat Fitz & Cara, Little Georgia, The Wilson Pickers, Hussy Hicks, The Mae Trio, Miss Eileen & King Lear, Ukulele Death Squad and many many more.

The Queenscliff Music Festival is held in Queenscliff, Victoria from the 24th to 26th November – check out the official site for more details including the full list of artists announced.

Bluesfest Review: Good Friday is a fine day!

Busby Marou at Bluesfest. Photos by Stuart Bucknell Photography

This year, we thought we’d take you on a walking tour, dropping in to different stages across four days of Bluesfest – for those who might have missed an act, or couldn’t make it.

Welcome to Bluesfest, It’s Good Friday and the weather is glorious. Entering from Northern entrance, you’re greeted by an avenue of stalls and people with a vast and exciting line up ahead of you. It’s 12.30pm, the sun is overhead, you’ve got money on your RFID wrist band and the bars are plentiful! Taking a tour through the entire site, past the Juke Joint and Boomerang Stage, Delta Stage, past the enormous Mojo and Crossroad stages, all the way to the far end to find respite in the shade at the Jambalaya stage.

Busby Marou are already commanding an enormous crowd in spite of the early time slot and their upbeat vibes are well received with the crowd still flowing in, toe tapping and bopping along. Stories about meeting Paul Kelly at an Awards night and the advice given on the monumental difference between incredible international gigs and starting out in Mittagong in 1979 are the jovial introduction to “Drink the World Dry.” An emphatic cover of INXS’s “Never Tear Us Apart” has us all singing along and indulging in a bit of air guitar. A final cover of Don Henley’s “Boys of Summer” carries us all the way to the bar for a cheeky bevy and through the food hall for a bite to eat.

Rhiannon Giddens Bluesfest 2017 by Stuart Bucknell PhotographyAt 2:15pm you find yourself at the Crossroads to catch Bluesfest sweetheart, Rhiannon Giddens in a banjo laden opening number. Showing off her range, a bit of scat treats the crowd to the power behind her vocals, as her diverse and all-encompassing set rolls out to very happy ears complete with some honky tonk blues, soulful a Capella and a hint of bayou country panache. The passion from Giddens is palpable as a hush settles over the crowd, “At the Purchasers Option” haunts the audience with it’s 18th Century sensibilities. With the crowd in the palm of her hand, Giddens delivers an emotive one-two with her signature style. “We Could Fly” tells us a folk tale of old the people who could once fly but have since forgotten how, in a tender yet compelling lyrical journey. To round out a set jam packed with plucky old time reminiscence, gutsy powerful vocals and vulnerable trilling notes, title track “Freedom Highway” brings everyone together for a final huge response.

Wandering up to Boomerang stage, in front of Juke Joint, 3:45pm strikes and Yirrmal takes to the stage with a stirring indigenous opening. Between the two acoustic guitars and the stunning clarity of storytelling, a beautiful blend of English and indigenous language delivers a delicious cross over of both the expectations of an indigenous performance and an acclaimed acoustic act. His language punctuates the story and connects it back to earth and people in a way that is felt rather than heard.

The Strumbellas hit the Delta stage at 4:30pm with a first impression reminiscent of an early Boy and Bear folk-rock vibe, complete with sweet violin that carries the melody out above the full band sound. Around us, the crowd gets involved in the call and response, calling “Hey” to the world and joining in the easy to pick up lyrics and chorus. They deliver feel good happiness, wrapped up in a song. Graduating from the indie folk feel in to the heavier rock influenced folk, we all still erupt in cheers for the violin solo!

After a break and recharge over hearty fare and a drink tapped on the wristband, the much anticipated Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue bust on to the Mojo stage like we’ve partied all night long, not like it’s 7pm on a Friday! With a cataclysmic trombone leading an all guns blazing repertoire, we take some time away from the folk to appreciate the funk. The high energy hypnotises the crowd and Trombone Shorty’s dexterity playing both trombone and the most amazing, long trumpet trill that would put even the best Circular breathers to shame has us all dancing. The sheer joy on stage, evident thank to the bands on stage dancing antics creates a kind of intimacy, like we’ve been invited to a private party or club. The jazz trips over the funk and falls amongst the RnB that pulls itself together and gives us the show of a lifetime, every time. A powerhouse performance.

After a bite and a breather, it’s time for what many have been heralding as the Folktastic headliner, The Lumineers at 10:45pm on the Crossroads stage. Their opening builds anticipation and when you realise their recordings sound the same as their live performance, you know you’re in for a great show. Such a genuine and authentic sound, true to what we are so used to, has the crowd besides themselves as “Classy Girls” bursts forward with a real fervour and speed yet haunting cello punctuation. We’re surprised with

“Ho Hey” very early on and, unsurprisingly we all respond with wild abandon. Darling of the set, “Cleopatra” follows soon after with all of us in fine voice while “Dead Sea” has an earthy, grounded tone, like a low cloud or fog on the crowd to hush and sooth us. While we know and love every offering from their back catalogue, there’s a particularly special air as an upbeat rendition of Bob Dylan’s “Subterranean Homesick Blues” delivers a great vibe through a combination of strings, piano and thumping bass to mesh the band and crowd together.

The late night and huge traffic queue to leave the car park is worth it as we’re buzzing from head to toe with the first day’s Bluesfest blast.

See the full gallery of photos on our Facebook page.

Highlights from Friday at Bluesfest

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Mullum Music Festival Adds New Artists to 2016 Lineup

Julia Jacklin
Image Courtesy of Julia Jacklin

As if the Mullum Music Festival lineup wasn’t exciting enough they’ve gone ahead and announced a bunch more amazing artists.

And as always there’s a bunch of Timber and Steel favourites littered throughout the latest announcement including Yirrmal, The Wilson Pickers, Jordie Lane & The Sleepers, Julia Jacklin (above), Áine Tyrrell, Ethno Folk Orchestra, Claire Anne Taylor, Sal Kimber & The Rollin’ Wheel, Liz Stringer, The Button Collective and many more.

The Mullum Music Festival takes place in the northern NSW town of Mullumbimby from the 17th to 20th November. Tickets are already on sales – check the official site for details.

The full lineup of artists announced so far are below:

Eilen Jewell (USA), The Harpoonist and The Axe Murderer (Canada), Julien Baker (USA), Skunkhour, Lior, Tash Sultana, Henry Wagons & The Only Children, Olympia, Gareth Liddiard (The Drones), Matt Andersen (Canada), Fourplay String Quartet, Suzannah Espie, Yirrmal, Ajak Kwai (South Sudan), William Crighton, Bobby Alu & The Palm Royale, King Tide, Hat Fitz & Cara Robinson, The Wilson Pickers, Jordie Lane & The Sleepers, Epizo Bangor (West Africa), Julia Jacklin, Sahara Beck, The Meltdown, Áine Tyrrell, Allensworth (USA), Ethno Folk Orchestra, Claire Anne Taylor, King Curly, Tina Harrod, Yeshe, TEK TEK Ensemble, Arakwal Dancers, Sal Kimber & The Rollin’ Wheel, Jo Jo Smith, Madeline Leman and The Desert Swells, Liz Stringer, The Buckleys, Mandy Nolan, Laura Targett, The Windy Hills, Hamish Stuart: ‘Someone Else’s Child’, Round Mountain Girls, The Old School Funk Band, Miss Renee Simone, The Golden Mile, Ladyslug, The Button Collective, Shelly Brown, Honey & Knives, Mrs Miyagi, Lez Karski Trio, Tullara, Levingstone, The Hottentots, Two Lions, Ben Wilson and The Job Seekers, Sali Bracewell, Aloha Baby, Dustyesky, Mario Queen of the Circus, Spaghetti Circus, Funmaker Silent Disco, Sal Kimber Bush Dance, Raise The Roof Gospel Choir, Wild Science, Roundabout Theatre, The Biggest Little Town Choir, The Cassettes, The Magic Bus

Folk Music on the 2016 Bello Winter Music Festival Lineup

Willie Watson
Image Courtesy of Willie Watson

After a massively successful debut last year the Bello Winter Music festival returns this July and once again the lineup is full of folky and rootsy goodness.

First of all, if you haven’t heard, the headliner this year is the fantastic Willie Watson. Watson, who was a founding member of Old Crow Medicine Show, was recently in the country as part of the Dave Rawlings Machine but will return this time around in solo mode. And we’ve also heard he’ll be a part of the Gram Parsons Project event at the festival with a bunch of other artists.

Other folk leaning artists on the Bello Winter Music lineup include Jeff Lang, Jaaleekaay, Joshua Hedley, Bobby Alu, Sahara Beck, Yirrmal, The Twoks, Miss Eileen & King Lear, All Our Exes Live in Texas, William Crighton, Inga Liljestrom, Merryn Jeann, Loren Kate, Raised By Eagles, Sweet Jean, Green Mohair Suits, Aine Tyrrell, The Mid North, Brian Campeau, Claire Anne Taylor, Tullara Connors, Madeline Leman and The Desert Swells, Diamond Duck and many many more.

The Bello Winter Music festival takes place in Bellingen, NSW from the 7th to 10th July. Check out the offical web site for more details.

The full lineup is as follows:

Willie Watson (USA), Jeff Lang, Kylie Auldist, Tijuana Cartel, Mojo Juju, L-FRESH The LION, Jaaleekaay (W Afr/Aus), Joshua Hedley (USA), Jazz Party, Bullhorn, Allensworth (US), Tora, Bobby Alu (solo), Sahara Beck, Yirrmal, TEK TEK Ensemble, King Tide, Majiwa (KEN), The Twoks, Miss Eileen & King Lear, All Our Exes Live in Texas, William Crighton, Inga Liljestrom, The Seven Ups, Desmond Cheese, New Venusians, Merryn Jeann, Loren Kate, Gyan, Jo Jo Smith, Raised By Eagles, Sweet Jean, Greg Sheehan, Brian Nankervis, Liam Power, Joel Salom, Mandy Nolan, Mae Wilde, Green Mohair Suits, Aine Terrell, The Grand Magoozi, The Mid North, Ilona Harker, Bunya, Brian Campeau, Claire Anne Taylor, Tullara Connors, Madeline Leman and The Desert Swells, Diamond Duck, Baby Blue, Levingstone, Noam Blat, Drama King, Then Joelene, STAV, The Brothers, The Spangled Drongos, Kaya Boom’s Love Songs, Fish on Fire, Tim Porter, Siobhan Corcoran, Honey & Knives, Horns on Helium, Bellingen Afrobeat Ensemble, The Cassettes, How Deep is Your Love?, Bollywood Sisters, The Amazing Drumming Monkeys, Roundabout Theatre, The BlueSkillet Rover Van, Tales & Songs

Brunswick Music Festival Announces 2016 Lineup

Blind Boy Paxton
Image Courtesy of Blind Boy Paxton

I feel like the Brunswick Music Festival is the quiet achiever of the folk festival season. Taking place just after the Port Fairy Folk Festival from the 15th to 20th March, the Brunswick Music Festival in Melbourne always manages to mix the best of Melbourne’s folk and acoustic talent with the incredible touring international artists.

This year the Brunswick Music Festival has announced a raft of exciting artists including Blind Boy Paxton (above), Jeff Lang, Alison Ferrier, Kim Salmon, Mandy Connell, Mick Thomas, Charles Jenkins, Cat Canteri & Justin Bernasconi, Sean McMahon, Jemma Rowlands, Rich Davies, Brooke Russell, Ayleen O’Hanlon, Hat Fitz & Cara, Zourouna, Lala Shouha, Sweet Mona’s Choir, Ajak Kwai, Jawa Pitu Band, Santa Taranta, Cumbia Cosmonauts, Los Kumbia Killers, La Descarga, Sonidero Esperanza, Alsarah and the Nubatones, Mountain Mocha Kilimanjaro, Mànran, Spiro, Moxie, Shane Howard Trio, Emma Donovan and the PutBacks, Yirrmal, Mia Dyson, Jess Ribeiro and many more.

The traditional Sydney Road Street Party takes place on the 6th March with the full Brunswick Music Festival held from the 15th to 20th March. Check out the official site for all the events taking place during the Brunswick Music Festival.

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