Friday, August 8, 2008

Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Festival kicks off tonight

Really good music'
The Telegram

The Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Festival kicks off tonight boasting one of its most diverse lineups ever. It's part of the "Folkies Without Borders" theme organizers chose to celebrate the relationship and ancestry folk shares with other forms of roots music.

"We want to make sure we represent the living traditions," explains Newfound-land and Labrador Folk Arts Council chairwoman Anita Best, who had a hand in selecting this year's performers."It's not just a dead culture we have," she says. "It's a culture everyone's participating in."

With that, the festival will feature performances by artists from an array of musical backgrounds, including Sylvia Tyson, Andy Irvine, Roy Johnstone, blues act The Roger Howse Band, local reggae-ska outfit The Idlers, and a special reunion performance by legendary Newfoundland ensemble Figgy Duff.

"We went with what we thought would be a good mix," explains Best.


Newfoundland troubadour Ron Hynes, who will perform on the main stage tonight, began his career around the same time the folk festival started and shares Andrews' sentiment on the event.

"The folk festival is so important to us because we have a longer history of original and traditional music," he says, explaining the uniqueness of folk music in Newfoundland and Labrador.

"It stems from local storytelling, poets in small towns all around the island and in Labrador who wrote songs about things that happened in their communities," he continues. "(The songs) weren't written to be published ... they were written to define who the people were.

Read the rest of this article here.

Weekend passes for the 32nd Annual Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Festival are $60 for adults and $40 for students and youth. Day passes are $25 and $15 respectively and session passes are $15 and $10.For more information visit


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