Australians do folk festivals really well. They are organized but laid back, welcoming and most of all very festive! Except for a few large commercial events, the folk festivals are grass-roots, usually hosted by a town council or group of people and lots of volunteers in a town with a common desire to enrich culture and community in their rural area.
It was an honor to have played the Yackandandah Folk Festival and to be included in the unity that this vibrant and creative community works towards. We had three performances over the weekend, each in their unique space. It was a good learning experience for us all to take into considerations the mood, lighting and vibe of each space and offered the audience three similar but very different performances.
One of our favorite things about festivals is that they offer us a chance to connect with other muso’s out there touring like we do. And, at Yackandandah we finally got to meet our friends The April Maze after years and years of internet friendship. What a joy to hear their journey coming together as a couple and as musicians, and their performance was breathtaking. We meet another US traveling family/band called the Alaskan String Band, and talked shop about buses, home school and serving. There was also a fantastic youth tent with bands from around the region, one of which our son admired called The Hounds Homebound from Yackandandah. And, our favorite new find was the Good Lovelies from Canada. Their harmonies were like silk, just beautiful and reminded us of The Andrews Sisters.
A highlight was connecting with our mates, The Beez (from Berlin), who we met at the Burke and Wills festival a few years back. Thanks to our gracious host family, Fiona and Ken Jones, we enjoyed an evening meal and “after party” of jamming and sharing road warrior stories.
Hope to see you next time around YACK!