Jul 21

The Calgary Folk Music Festival Approaches

by Nathan Atnikov · 0 comments

phototake by: Connor Turner

photo taken by: Connor Turner

Pretty soon, people will be walking all over the downtown core carrying backpacks, lawn chairs and tilley hats, and that can only mean one thing – the Calgary Folk Music Festival is about to descend on our fair city once again. There are few surer bets than the Folk Fest, which annually takes over Prince’s Island Park with an amazing mash-up of international music, and always provides people with a laundry list of new favourite artists.

This year’s docket is as packed as ever. Thursday promises to be a can’t-miss night, with rebel rocker Michael Franti, folk messiah Iron & Wine, and Toronto-based alt-country singer Justin Rutledge lighting up the main stage. Friday will feature bookish indie rockers The Decemberists and the fabulous, Montreal-based instrumental troupe Bell Orchestre, which is made up of members of Arcade Fire.

The weekend main stage lineup is a little quieter, but no less impressive. Country legend Glen Campbell will surprisingly serve as Saturday’s warm-up act for headliner Sarah Harmer. Sunday, the festival will draw to a close with the legendary Mavis Staples and Loreena McKennitt.

One of the newer features of the festival is the Twilight Stage, which features evening sets during the Friday and Saturday main stage acts. For a more intimate show, you can check out Calgary’s own Chad VanGaalen, occasional Broken Social Scene member Apostle of Hustle, and the uplifting alt-folk act Akron/Family, among others.

And, of course, there’s the workshops. Taking place Saturday and Sunday during the day, the workshops put all of the artists in a blender and spits them out over the festival’s six stages. Electronic artists will mingle with roots musicians; DJs will be cast on stage with banjo players; throat singers will chime in on Neil Young covers. All just business as usual at the Calgary Folk Music Festival.

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