Ilfracombe Folk Festival announces its 2017 line-up

Ilfracombe 2017

Solid Entertainments is delighted to announce that Ilfracombe Folk, Roots & World Music Festival will be returning to Ilfracombe Holiday Park on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 20th, 21st, 22nd October!

Following the great success of last years music festival, even though this years a different genre, the line-up had to equally………if not more striking.  So with two blockbusting headliners Fairport Convention and Lindisfarne plus fifteen very different beguiling acts, a final headline act to be announced very soon; this will most definitely be one of North Devon’s finest festivals in 2017 and certainly a weekend not to miss!

Based in suburban north London, Fairport Convention played their first concert in a church hall in May 1967 and half a century later, they are in fine form and are still one of the busiest bands around.  In 2002, they won the coveted Lifetime Achievement Award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and the seminal album Liege And Lief was voted ‘Best Folk Album Ever’ by Radio 2 listeners.  In Summer 2006, Liege And Lief was awarded a Gold Disc for its continuing sales.  In August last year, the band staged Fairport’s Cropredy Convention music festival in Oxfordshire and in most years, there are tours in the USA, Canada and UK by the Fairport Acoustic line-up and the spin-off band The Dylan Project.  The current line-up of Simon Nicol (lead vocal, rhythm and electric guitars), Dave Pegg (backing vocals, bass guitar, mandolin), Ric Sanders (violin), Chris Leslie (lead vocal, fiddle, bouzouki, mandolin) and Gerry Conway (percussion and drums) is still packing venues wherever they play!

Lindisfarne, the unforgettable 70s folk-rock pioneers return to form with a classic six-piece line up of long-time members, fronted by original founder-member Rod Clements on vocals, mandolin, fiddle, guitars; Dave Hull-Denholm, vocal, guitars; Steve Daggett, vocal, keyboards, guitars; Charlie Harcourt, guitar, vocal; Ian Thomson, bass, vocal and Paul Thompson (ex-Roxy Music) drums.  With a repertoire of incredible songs like ‘Meet Me On The Corner’, ‘Fog On The Tyne’, ‘Lady Eleanor’ and ‘Run For Home’ and a reputation for live performance second to none, Lindisfarne’s power to galvanise festival and concert audiences remains undimmed and is guaranteed to get the crowd on its feet and singing along

The line-up comprises:

Friday – Papillon – Folklaw – Galley Beggar – Emi McDade – Kezia

Saturday – Lindisfarne – Gilmore & Roberts – Said The Maiden – Mia And The Moon – Crumbling Ghost – Alice Gullick

Sunday – Fairport Convention – Willie & The Bandits – Richard Digance – Linda Em – Luke Daniels – The Broadside Boys

When artists of this calibre get together, festival goers can expect to see top class live performances and hear a range of incredible sounds, with sets that incorporate a creative mix of original new material and a few classic numbers that many will remember.  Keep an eye out for the announcement on who will be headlining on Friday!

Situated in a beautiful part of the country, the holiday park has been extensively refurbished by the new owners and with fully furnished apartments, ranging from one bedroom to as large as three bedrooms and a range of other great facilities; there is everything needed under one roof.  Facilities include:

Two Heated Indoor Pools – Sauna – Fully Equipped Gym – Indian Cuisine & Takeaway – Free WiFi in the Clubhouse – Launderette – Bar Meals – Store On Site – Restaurant & Takeaway

With accommodation for the weekend being just a short walk away from the music you won’t need to worry about booking that taxi to take you home or to a hotel at the end of each night.  Also – car parking is free for the weekend – so you don’t have to worry about where you leave your car.  So whether you’re local to North Devon, travelling from the other side of the country or overseas to be with us, you’ll only have to focus on the music and enjoying yourself.  No need to search for food and drinks on the day either, there will be a range of alcoholic/non-alcoholic beverages, real ales available and a varied menu that should meet everyone’s taste.

If you fancy a stroll into Ilfracombe, to maybe see world renowned artist Damien Hirst’s Verity sculpture in the picturesque port – you’re situated only minutes away.  Alternatively, if you want to chill out (literally), why not have a wander on one of the many fine and award winning beaches in and around the area, with secluded coves and wide stretches of golden sand and crashing surf.

The festival will take place in North Devon’s largest entertainment venue at Ilfracombe Holiday Park, Marlborough Road, Ilfracombe, Devon EX34 8PF

Early Bird Ticket are only £119 per person – includes 3 nights self catering accommodation (Based on 2/3/4 Sharing)

Early Bird Ticket (Single Occupancy) are only £145 – includes 3 nights self catering accommodation

Day Tickets are only £25 per person

Tickets can be purchased by calling 01472 349 222 or online at http://www.ilfracombefolkfestival.co.uk/tickets.html

Festival website: http://www.ilfracombefolkfestival.co.uk/index.html

Campie’s Capers at her first Cropredy festival 2016

Campie's Capers
Photo by Darren Beech

It is that time of year again and I had an invite to join the lads from folking.com and ‘do’ the 2016 Cropredy Festival. As a Cropredy virgin and non-camper, three days before the event I was filled with trepidation and angst, although the music beckoned! How could you not with such a line up?! This is what kept me going.

I arrived at Folkmaster Towers the day before, to be greeted by camping equipment and God knows what else – strewn all over the front lawn. Were we packing for the army? Decisions of which tent to take, go wash this, do that, but it kept my mind off sleeping in a cow field the next night! I announced I had bought a pop up tent for the occasion as it was quick and easy to put it up, I confidently said, I was told they are a nightmare to put down……..that’s another story!!! A visit to Waitrose followed the front lawn episode.

vanman1
Photo by Darren Beech

The day dawned. We were to meet the rest of the team at the ungodly hour of 7am at a service station over an hour and a half away. Everyone turned up at the appointed time, and we sped off in convoy to all arrive at the same time, to be in the same field and set up the Folking.com camp. Paul turned up with a transit van, complete with proper bed, fairy lights, toilet but no kitchen implements or the food and cooking equipment he was supposed to be bringing.

Great start but we had a laugh! We ended up in Field 4, full of cow pats but no cows thankfully. My tent went up a breeze with the help of the wonderful Chris, but our Beloved Leader was hampered by a slight drizzle and size of his tent, and then fluffed about filling it with comfy mattress and everything including the kitchen sink. Jon, Chris myself and Paul just amused ourselves while we were waiting the two and a half hours it took him to create the classic boudoir experience for himself which was only marred by the forgotten sarong which was meant to have provided some sort of Bedouin shade.

fairport cropredy opening set 2016
Photo by Jean Camp

Onwards to The Field…. The Festival was opened by Fairport MC – Anthony John Clarke and Thursday kicked off with a Fairport Acoustic set, lots of people already in attendance and we had a good view from where we were, and two huge screens were either side the stage for those further back.

Hayseed Dixie Cropredy 16
Photo by Jean Camp

I was on photo duty, so could get to the stage area easily to capture the artists. One of the acts – Coco And The Butterfields were a new name to me and were suggested by Debs Earle and her daughter Rosie from Folk In The Barn, to the Fairport Team, and a good choice. Energetic vocals from these Canterbury buskers.

These were ably followed by Hayseed Dixie, whom I have wanted to see for ages. A rip-roaring Bluegrass Rock with attitude!

Madness with front man Suggs, completed the first day as Headliners. They certainly didn’t disappoint and belted out their hits and more with gusto.

Suggs Cropredy16
Photo by Darren Beech

We returned to our tents. I discovered a hill where my head was going to be and managed 4 hours sleep!

Friday dawned very hot, not normal Cropredy weather I’m told , went off for a shower to find the Cricket Pavilion showers blocked. I was the last one and was told I couldn’t have a shower there. Darren suggested that I should have used the excellent Fairport free ones (which he promised to point out to me, but never actually got round to doing). This advice was provided after he paid his two pounds fifty at the Cricket Pavilion, had queued, showered and dressed within ten minutes… Well, if it was going to happen to someone… It was going to happen to me! By this time the acts had started and I missed A J Clarke and Peggy, also BBC R2 YFA winner Brighde Chaimbeul, although I could hear them. Thankfully I surfaced for the female rock duo – Sound Of The Sirens who I had seen earlier this year supporting Rick Astley, they are a favourite of R2 presenter Chris Evans, have performed at Glastonbury, and are so energetic and a joy to watch and listen to. Definitely ones to watch out for.

Sound of The Sirens Cropredy16
Photo by Jean Camp

I had to visit the medical tent… again… it could only happen to me… went in to get some different tablets for a water infection as the ones I had were not working and came back out having being wired up to an ECG machine for an irregular heartbeat. I said I had a Festival to go to, was a first time camper, had a shower disaster, had lost my tooth brush, so what did they expect!? If my ticker was dicky it would last until Sunday! (No alcohol had been consumed by the way).

Another band I enjoyed but had heard before were Willie And The Bandits who are labelled as a classic blues rock band, but they are so much more. They have played Glastonbury and all over Europe. The Cropredy crowd loved them.

Willie & The Bandits Cropredy16
Photo by Jean Camp

Next came festival favourites Steeleye Span with Maddy Prior, who had everyone on the field eating out of their hands. Performing a mixture of songs including their latest album – The Wintersmith and of course – All Around My Hat! In 47 years, the band has notched up a family tree of member changes and like Fairport, have been one of the bands responsible for putting folk-rock on the map. They still sound great!

Steeleye Span Cropredy 16
Photo by Jean Camp

Friday ended with Headliners – The Bootleg Beatles – who have appeared some years ago at Cropredy. As expected, they belted out a variety of Beatle Hits and a couple of dress changes denoted different eras the Beatles went through. “George” wowed the audience with a fantastic rendition of “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.” I think Cropredy were lucky to get them as they are touring all over the world shortly. Apparently they are the most successful Beatles Tribute act ever. I’m not surprised. Fabulous!

Bootleg Beatles Cropredy 16
Photo by Jean Camp

Dave LongboatAfter the main act finished, the rest of the crew (all bar Chis and me) headed off to see the other Paul, Mr. Johnson who was camped near the bottom of the disabled field to listen to him do a couple of his own songs as well as meeting up with his daughter and daughters partner “Dave Longboat’ who had lost his way on the Thursday night back to campsite 4, misplaced his footing and ended up in the Canal. Dave asked me to extend his thanks to the Cropredy villagers, who were having a party at the time and came to the rescue with towels. My camping buddy Paul said, “there are only two things that go in a canal, one a longboat and the other is Dave”, hence the name. I believe that the folkmaster penned a poem to mark the occasion and Paul Johnson is rumoured to be writing a tune for it for next year.

Richard Digance Cropredy 16
Photo by Jean Camp

Saturday – main day and another hot one in more ways than one – early start for getting a decent spot on The Field. Richard Digance kicked off the day’s proceedings and was so funny. He can sing well too and play a mean old rag! We ended up with 20,000 people plus doing a Morris dance with hankies! Had to be seen to be believed! Good fun.

Other highlights for me were Maia, who call themselves sci-fi folk genre. Certainly different and very watchable. Then we had Gilmore & Roberts who were a duo I had wanted to catch up with and they didn’t disappoint. They played as a four piece band and I enjoyed them very much.

Pierce Bros 1 Cropredy16
Photo by Jean Camp

The Pierce Brothers from Australia brought the house down! The brothers were overwhelmed as they had not played such a big crowd before, and seem very humbled by the response they got from the enthusiastic crowd. Fairport’s Simon Nicol said later that The Pierce Brothers had been knocked for six by the audience reaction to their music. Hope to see them back in the UK soon.

Damien Barber and his Demon Barbers was something else! An energetic fusion of song, dancing, hip hop, trad folk, everything all rolled into one. Very visual and entertaining.

Demon Barbers XL Cropredy16
Photo by Jean Camp
Photo by Jean Camp.
Photo by Jean Camp.

Highlight of the Festival for me was the legend who is Ralph McTell. A classic gifted wordsmith, prolific guitarist and a truly genuine guy. The set included, amongst others, Barges, Pepper and Tomatoes and a rousing rendition of From Clare to Here and he had the audience eating out of his hand and rightly so. A truly fabulous performance from our National Treasure. Of course, Streets of London was there as well, and hearing 20,000 or more people singing it, was a joy in itself. You could tell by the huge smile on Ralph’s face when he finally said goodnight that the love was following in both directions with abundance! Lovely that Paul Johnson and Darren (aka Folkmaster) had done such an amazing interview with Ralph the previous day (listen again below).

Fairport sat set 1 Cropredy16
Photo by Jean Camp

Fairport Convention ended the evening and the weekend. They opened with some very funny Olympic themed visuals which you can watch again on the “Fairporters” Facebook group if you missed it. Simon Nicol made a superb speech to the memory of Fairport founder virtuoso fiddler Dave Swarbrick, who sadly died a few months ago, but who has left a fantastic musical legacy and will not be forgotten. Dave has inspired so many people to take up the fiddle over the years and will also be remembered for his song writing, sense of humour and character. The compilation of Swarb photos from across the years was also a lovely touch as well.

Fairport sat set 2 Cropredy16

An outstanding set from Fairport followed which included a guest appearance from 11-year-old blues guitar wonder-boy Toby Lee, who played the lead on ‘Mr. Lacey’ (I think). Plus the traditional ‘Matty Groves’ and of course, ‘Meet On The Ledge’ ending, the point where the field, all twenty thousand of us, unify around the song that examplifies the reason we all go. My team mates and I all linked up together to sing this and felt myself welling up. I had so enjoyed my first Cropredy, been introduced to some new and amazing artists and their music, and was sorry to have to say goodbye for another year. Yes, I will be going next year for Fairport’s 50th year celebration!

Jean Camp

GILMORE & ROBERTS – Conflict Tourism (GR! Records GRR006)

GILMORE & ROBERTS Conflict TourismI remember once, in Ireland, hearing that some American tourists’ idea of a fun day out was a taxi ride down the Falls Road. That kind of “thinking” forms the theme of this album, the fourth from Katriona Gilmore and Jamie Roberts.

The opening track, ‘Cecilia’, is a very powerful way to start with double bass from Matt Downer and all manner of additions from producer Mark Tucker, notably the percussive crack presumably imitating gunfire. It’s followed by ‘Jack O Lantern’ which starts out quietly and builds up to a big finish with Phillip Henry on lap steel. It has the Devil ruminating on being tricked not once but twice by the titular Jack. Next come a song from each writer which seem to link: Katriona’s ‘She Doesn’t Like Silence’ and Jamie’s ‘Selfish Man’ and here’s where I need to turn to the lyrics which are available on their duo’s website. Both are about internal conflict: the former is decorated by Phillip Henry’s lap steel and Dobro while the latter once more benefits from mark Tucker’s programming. As a man brought up in Derbyshire I should really like ‘Stumble On The Seam’ more than I do but by now I was beginning to find that the music was overwhelming the songs.

‘Peggy Airey’ is about a 19th century Barnsley character with the narrator regretting his former cruelty to her and ‘Peter Pan’ is dedicated to Jamie’s cousin who died prematurely – another aspect of internal conflict – and the one song in the set that doesn’t try too hard. Katriona and Jamie seem bent on moving towards the mainstream and, while I can’t deny them their ambition, where they’re going may not be where I want to follow.

Dai Jeffries

If you would like to order a copy of the album (in CD or Vinyl), download it or just listen to snippets of selected tracks (track previews are usually on the download page) then click on the banner link below to be taken to our associated partner Amazon’s website. Buying through Amazon on folking.com helps us to recover a small part of our running costs, so please order anything you need as every little purchase helps us.

Artists’ website: www.gilmoreroberts.co.uk

‘Cecilia’ – the official video:

The Lost Art – new single

The Lost Art - new single

Having developed a reputation as a fascinating and spectacular live act, The Lost Art have now mastered the art of doing things a little unorthodoxly. With immediately engaging vocals and dazzlingly innovative guitar work, the duo have been captivating audiences throughout the UK with the band already having supported the likes of Cara Dillon, Lotte Mullan and Emma Stevens.

Written whilst under the influence, the stomping new single ‘Kicking the Habit’ out 12th October, finds Greg Hooper and Gordo Francis in a playful, raucous mood. The creative track brings lively vocal hooks, exciting arrangements, provocative pace and inventive guitars to keep the ears guessing whilst giving a familiar summertime feel, transporting the listener straight back to the festival season and hitting you in the head like a serotonin beach ball.

’Kicking The Habit’comes from pair’s Special Edition version of their self-titled debut album set for release 2nd November. Included with the release are special remixed songs along with a fully notated score allowing fans to enjoy this forward thinking duo’s music in a new and unique way. Mixing the old with the new, the varying cocktail of quirky remixes add extra flavour to this inspired thirst quencher of an album.

‘Kicking The Habit’ live at Eynsham Hall:

 

Artists’ website:   http://www.thelostartduo.com

Gilmore & Roberts – new video

Gilmore & Roberts - new video
Photograph by Barnaby Aldrick

BBCR2 Folk Award nominees Gilmore & Roberts have unveiled the video to ‘Cecilia’, from their upcoming album, Conflict Tourism.

Conflict Tourism is the fourth album from award-winning duo Gilmore & Roberts. Following a year of touring in mainland Europe, Canada, and their native Britain, Katriona Gilmore and Jamie Roberts noticed a common thread running through their latest crop of original songs. Conflict, whether an internal struggle between positive and negative, or a healthy body and a disease, is an everyday phenomenon captured perfectly by these 11 tracks.

Previously nominated twice at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, Gilmore & Roberts cover a broader and more contemporary genre-spectrum than might be expected from a duo wielding guitar, fiddle and mandolin. Produced by Mark Tucker and featuring Matt Downer (Jamie Smith’s Mabon), Phil Henry (Phillip Henry & Hannah Martin) and James ‘Hutch’ Hutchinson (Bonnie Raitt), Conflict Tourism packs a considered punch from start to finish. From the industrial weight of ‘Cecilia’ and the insistent energy of ‘Peggy Airey’ to the hauntingly hypnotic ‘Jack O Lantern’, Gilmore & Roberts’ songwriting inflicts multiple earworms after a single listen.

If you would like to order a copy of the album (in CD or Vinyl), download it or just listen to snippets of selected tracks (track previews are usually on the download page) then click on the banner link below to be taken to our associated partner Amazon’s website. Buying through Amazon on folking.com helps us to recover a small part of our running costs, so please order anything you need as every little purchase helps us.

Artists’ website: www.GilmoreRoberts.co.uk