The National Folk Festival announces over 30 new artists for its 2017 line-up. Featuring top drawer acts from Australia and overseas, many will re-define and re-imagine the concept of folk.
Headlining this offering is Jarlath Henderson, the youngest ever winner of the BBC Young Folk Award, an artist who featured on Disney’s Brave soundtrack and, who has been described as ‘jaw dropping’, ‘gifted’ and a ‘benchmark for the new generation’. Born in Ireland and now based in Glasgow, Henderson brings together the old and the new creating a rich, bold and uplifting soundscape.
With a ‘voice to melt glaciers’, British Indie Award nominee Katey Brooks is a must see. Brooks has travelled many roads from Glastonbury Festival to Abbey Rd and featured on albums with the likes of The Rolling Stones’ Bill Wyman, Pink Floyd’s Nick Mason and Brian May.
Joining the line-up from the land of the white cloud is one of New Zealand’s hottest stars, Mel Parsons. With a unique style simmering between indie folk and alt-country, this gutsy artist is a two-time NZ Music Award Finalist, and in 2016 won the NZCMA Country Song of the Year and Best Independent Tour. Mel is set to captivate audiences at the National with songs from her acclaimed new album ‘Drylands’.
Blurring the boundaries of folk, the multiple award-winning electrotrad sounds of Canada’s Melisande, are a hybrid of high energy, driving beats and French vocals. This is the sound of the Festival at night. For lovers of tradition Caitlín Nic Gabhann, Ciarán Ó Maonaigh, and Cathal Ó Curráin (IRL) will not disappoint. This trio features All Ireland concertina champion, and dancer with Riverdance Caitlín Nic Gabhann, Ciarán Ó Maonaigh, one of Ireland’s leading fiddlers in the Donegal style and award winning singer and banjo player Cathal Ó Curráin.
From Brisbane and back by popular demand is the nine-piece tour-de-force Dubmarine, who packed the dancefloor at every Festival show they played in 2014. Lead by the vocal gymnastics of Indigenous superstar and Gangulu man D-Kazman, Dubmarine bring the party to the people, smashing together dub, dancehall, reggae and drum n bass into a groove all their own.
Also returning to the National in 2017 is Kutcha Edwards, who just took out the Melbourne Prize for Music. A Mutti Mutti man from the Murrumbidgee and member of the Stolen Generation, Kutcha is an icon of the Aboriginal soul/blues scene and has worked extensively with The Black Arm Band and Carlos Santana.
Other Australian artists announced today include 19-Twenty, the haunting world music sounds of Aria-winning Zulya and the Children of the Underground and Canberra’s favourite glam-folk divas Sparrow-Folk. The big drums are also coming with YuNiOn and Stonewave Taiko the stellar new taiko group from south coast NSW and, make sure you catch Melbourne’s sensational young emerging talent The Bean Project, winners of the Folk Alliance Australia Youth Award at the 2016 National Folk Festival.
Full artist announcement on the website. With a new look for 2017 at a reimagined site, the 51st National Folk Festival takes place across five fabulous days in Canberra at Easter, 13-17 April. Discounted Early Bird Tickets are now available. Keep up with all the Festival news, Master Classes and announcements at www.folkfestival.org.au or on our Facebook or Twitter pages. @natfolkfest #ournff #5daysinaperfectworld