After a busy three day weekend at the Vancouver Folk Music Festival, here are our top picks from the schedule:
Wish I Was There
Sable: I wish I could have checked out Fish & Bird concert on Sunday morning at the Folk Fest. I was impressed with the gentle strums on their instruments and the very West Coast influences in their songwriting.
Twila: I wish I could have been at the CountryFolk workshop featuring Roger Knox, Jon Langford & Jean Cook, The Honeycutters, Leonard Sumner and Suzie Vinnick. The Honeycutters won their way into my heart with a Stan Rogers reference and some good old fashioned twang on Sunday morning, and now I’m kicking myself for missing any of their appearances in Vancouver.
Sable: James Hill was my new Folk Fest find this time around. I actually heard him briefly in Winnipeg as a tweener but at this festival I was actually heard him play a solid sampling of songs. It was magic hearing some ukulele influenced by the sounds of Cole Porter and Irving Berlin in his piece, Lying in Wait. I’ll be excited to hear his new album release in Fall 2014.
Twila: Stephen Kellogg. A solid singer-songwriter with a voice which is both comforting but commanding, sadly I only caught a tiny sampling of him at the Playing With Fire workshop, but I will certainly be looking for more of his music in the future.
Sable: Jenny Ritter, James Hill, and Eliza Gilkyson had my drowsy ears entranced at 10 AM on Sunday morning. There were some killer electric guitar and fiddle solos interspersed throughout the workshop set. There was also a great crowd sing-along moment with Ritter’s We Must Sing near the end. It was the perfect festival wake-up call.
Twila: Straight Up. Both a way to order a drink, and the name of my favourite workshop session in Vancouver. Winnipeg’s Oh My Darling played host to our southern neighbours the Lost Bayou Ramblers and Langhorne Slim & the Law. It was pure Canadian folk fest magic. A little bit of jamming, and lots of listening and appreciation between the musicians on stage.