The centrepiece of concerts at the festival, the Ham Marquee provides a comfortable seated-venue for three first class concerts each day. Daytime Concerts included in Week, Weekend and Day tickets will feature:
ALISTAIR ANDERSON & NORTHLANDS
From the heart of Northumberland, this exciting new line-up (featuring internationally acknowledged the master of the English Concertina and Northumbrian Pipes, Alistair Anderson, gifted singer and flautist Sarah Hayes, ‘go to’ guitarist Ian Stephenson and dynamic fiddler Sophy Ball), conjures the spirit of the people and landscape of the North with music that is rooted in the tradition underpinned by arrangements that make the music soar.
STICK IN THE WHEEL
East London five-piece – headed by singer Nicola Kearey, and guitarist/producer Ian Carter – are no ordinary folk band. New album Follow Them True continues to question the notion of what folk music is, and what it means in 2018. Known for Kearey’s fierce, authentic delivery, theirs is culturally and politically switched on music with its roots firmly embedded in the genre’s traditional, working-class heritage.
GORDIE MACKEEMAN & HIS RHYTHM BOYS
From Prince Edward Island, Gordie MacKeeman exemplifies the term natural showman. An ace fiddle player nicknamed “crazy legs” for his frenetic loose-limbed step- dancing, he just loves to perform. Combine that exuberance and onstage dynamism with the stellar musicianship of his multi-instrumentalist comrades His Rhythm Boys, and you have an unstoppable roots music force
STEVE TILSTON & JEZ LOWE
Two of the UK scene’s finest songwriters join forces for a concert filled with words, music, banter and intimate insights into their approach to their craft. Head to head, (guitar-) neck and neck, listen in as they rekindle the spontaneity of their late-night living-room song swaps. Questions, answers, anecdotes and anarchy… and a masterclass in songwriting!
The pioneering, ‘bloke folk’ triumvirate of Benji Kirkpatrick (Seth Lakeman Band, Bellowhead), Saul Rose (Waterson:Carthy, Whapweazel) and Paul Sartin (Bellowhead, Belshazzar’s Feast). With a wealth of experience between them, they perform together in a virtuosic display of musicianship and testosterone, rooted deeply in the English tradition.
THE RHEINGANS SISTERS
With a new CD imminent, award-winning fiddle-singers and multi-instrumentalists Rowan and Anna Rheingans make bold, playful and innovative contemporary music that is anchored in folk traditions, without being bound by them. Their performances are an intuitive musical conversation between two musicians at the height of their powers with life-time’s immersion in a variety of European traditions.
BBC Folk Award winning duo Phillip Henry & Hannah Martin bring us a new music which grows from the roots of their previous work – with traditional music of the British Isles, Indian classical slide guitar, stomping roots party beatbox harmonica, and a strong seam of original writing. “Subtle, atmospheric… Bravely original” Robin Denselow, The Guardian ****
Pete has played a major role in the British folk scene since he became a professional musician back in the early 70s. A tireless performer, impressive singer, songwriter, and a multi-instrumentalist, he switches easily from bouzouki to melodeon, banjo, dulcimer and “feet” and can handle anything from traditional ballads to comic material….with a good dose of bleak for good measure.
The mighty four-part harmonies of Barry Coope and Lester Simpson (Coope Boyes and Simpson), Jo Freya (Blowzabella/Moirai) and Fi Fraser (The Old Fashioned/ Polka Works). The quartet, previously known under their own names for Christmas shows and as part of shows with the author Michael Morpurgo, are now happily not just for Christmas! We can now enjoy an all year-round selection of songs (and instrumentals) that will touch the heart, engage the intellect and wow the ears.
THE EMILY ASKEW BAND
Their new CD showcases a thrilling collaboration where medieval and folk worlds collide! Emily – who plays fiddle, vielle, shawm, bagpipes, recorders and medieval harp – brings together her folk and early music experience to explore the possibilities of mixing these unusual sounds with modern instruments. The band features singer/guitarist/fiddler Jamie Roberts, fiddler/viola d’amore playing John Dipper and percussionist Simon Whittaker.
NATIONAL YOUTH FOLK ENSEMBLE
Celebrating excellence in youth folk music, this exciting ensemble bringing together talented young folk musicians from across England to create and perform inspiring new arrangements of folk music. Working under the expert tuition and guidance of Sam Sweeney, Artistic Director 2016-19, and a team of leading folk artist-educator, the NYFE project nurture young players’ talents, aspirations and creativity, enabling them to develop into the folk performers, educators and leaders of the future. And they are brilliant!