Les Barker writes strange poems and comes originally from Manchester, but he's now Welsh. He was an accountant before he became a professional idiot. He's written 85 books, which sell in large numbers at his gigs because people don't quite believe what they've just heard. His poems have spawned a number of folk heroes: Jason and the Arguments, Cosmo the Fairly Accurate Knife Thrower, Captain Indecisive, and Spot of the Antarctic, to name but two.
Hannah Sanders & Ben Savage
Since emerging in 2016, Hannah & Ben have been defying all conventions of style, genre and compartmentalisation. A touch of ‘Americana’, yet quintessentially English. Traditional, yet contemporary, with their individual writing style. Playful and instinctive, they make music with such panache and natural chemistry it makes perfect sense.
Scolds Bridle have been entertaining audiences throughout the UK and abroad since they were barely out of their teens.
They epitomise the art of Folk entertainment and continue to enthral audiences with their unique style and humour.
Catch their " We Are The Women ( left on the shore ) Show" with songs by Ron Baxter from Fleetwood.
Chris Ronald’s “keenly luxuriant voice and immaculate songcraft” have won him many accolades including a nomination for “Songwriter of the Year” at the Canadian Folk Music Awards. Ronald emigrated from England to Canada in 2002, and his music has been described as being “on the folk side of Americana.” 2017 saw Ronald’s latest album, Fragments, released on esteemed Canadian folk label Borealis Records.
Caffrey, McGurk & Madge
Caffrey McGurk Madge is a trio performing Contempory and Traditional songs and music. They bring years of experience both as a trio and solo work to make up a strong pleasing sound and audience embracing performance. CMM are considered amongst the best performers around.
"True English Folk singing, in my humble opinion, doesn't come much better than this." Keith Kendrick
Blue Woods String Band
The Blue Woods String Band was formed in 2018 when Kendal based couple Janet and Steve Crame teamed up with their friend Bernard Dart from Buxton. The three met at an American Old Time Summer Camp in Northamptonshire seven years ago and their mutual love for music and the great outdoors has cemented a close friendship. The trio (Janet Crame: fiddle and vocals; Steve Crame: double bass and vocals; Bernard Dart; guitar, banjo and vocals) play a variety of Old Time tunes, Country ballads and other Americana favourites. Their driving rhythms and high energy will get your feet tapping. A great addition to the cafe mini concerts and keep an eye out for their Old Time session in the programme.
Taffy Thomas & John Crouch
Well known storyteller Taffy Thomas MBE and chef John Crouch present "Three Golden Apples" a collection of the tales and tastes of Cumbria. The 2008 youth heritage project, where Staveley Youth Club members were participants, produced this recipe and storybook. Tales set in locations such as Kendal, Kentmere and Grasmere are accompanied by tastings of local recipes. The recipes will be prepared by John as Taffy tells the tales of sausages and star apples in the Rum Nicky. Mrs Wobble the Waitress may make an appearance too....
Taffy and Chrissy Thomas will also host the Friday Folk Club where songs, tunes and stories will be welcome from the audience.
Joe & Mo Nicholson
Mo & Joe from Harrogate have been singing and hosting clubs and singarounds for many years and are frequently to be found welcoming performers at Whitby, Saltburn & Cleckheaton festivals. They were routinely at Fylde festival too for many years. They have a wealth of songs to share but they love to encourage others to find their voice too.
Lea Nixon and Mark Connelly are singer/songwriters and are called
THE PELICAN BABIES
The Pelican Babies are sort of a refreshing, tuneful, harmonious, Didgeridoo and harmonica playing, guitar picking song writing duo.
Just recently two of their songs have been included on a compilation album of Pop/Baroque music with Gerry Rafferty, Genesis,
Bert Jansch, Donovan, The Zombies and others. Their biggest songwriting success was one called 'Some Say' being included on the soundtrack of a Disney TV film ‘Zenon Z3’.
Local(ish) Sedbergh based band The Moonshine Shakers are a high energy 6 Piece band using a range of genres, instruments and voices. Playing a mix of Rock'n'Roll, Folk, Americana and Re-Worked Pop Rock Classics
See them in Hawkshead Brewery Beer Hall on Friday night.
UnTethered is a local 5-piece band from the Kendal area who take a new look at popular and traditional songs from across the decades. With vocals, guitars, bass, harmonica and percussion they will happily play in a gentle acoustic setting or can turn up the volume (just a little) for a more lively venue.
AdLib is an a cappella quartet comprising Christine Wood, Gill Smith, Jan Burgess and Joyce Tedcastle, who first got to know one another singing in a local choir in the South Lakes. They love harmony singing of traditional-style folk songs, mostly from the British Isles.
See them at one of our cafe venues
The team performs traditional music and dance from the Appalachian mountains of America, sometimes referred to as American Old Time music and dance.
Hannah Rarity’s sublime voice imbues the music she performs with a depth of emotion that is inimitable. It’s this ability that has seen her become one of Scotland’s foremost young singers. Winner of BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year 2018, her status as a rising talent has been further consolidated by her Scots Singer of the Year nomination at the 2017 Scots Trad Music Awards and feature as ‘One to Watch in 2018’ in The Scotsman.
For more than 40 years BOB FOX has been regarded as one of “the iconic voices” of British folk song. Deeply influenced by the working class culture and industrial folk song prevalent in his native County Durham he has become a first rate exponent of storytelling through song.
Don’t miss a chance to experience his warm, rich voice, virtuoso guitar style and newly acquired melodeon playing skill. Expect to hear songs of love, joy, work and humour as he performs material from WarHorse, newly written songs from the New Radio Ballad series and old favourites from his many recordings.
The Time Bandits
The Time Bandits are a Chester-based folk band who came together for the first time in 2001. We are equally at home playing for both concerts and ceilidhs. Our repertoire mixes Renaissance and early dance music, particularly tunes from the John Playford collection, with traditional folk tunes and songs and an increasing proportion of music written by ourselves.
Central to the band’s philosophy is that early music is not for the museum. Whether first played 500 hundred years ago, or perhaps a mere hundred years ago, this is living music that should be played and enjoyed with a passion. We hope you agree.
Close Quarters are Sandra Harrison and husband Steve with friends, Jen Wilson and Judith Gleave.
Steve, Sandra and Judith have been singing together for over 30 years, formerly as Quartz, which included Pete Gleave, Judith's late husband. As Quartz they made four recordings, which were well received.
After Steve and Sandra moved to the lake District Jen joined them to perform as a trio at some north west folk clubs, but for some festival appearances Judith can still be tempted to join them to add her distinctive harmonies.
Their repertoire, delivered a capella, includes traditional and contemporary songs, gospel, music hall and some self-penned songs from Steve. A couple of his songs are sung quite widely and recorded by others on the folk circuit. They sing in close harmony and give their audiences lots of choruses to join in with. An album should be available this year.
The 50th year and final night of Jacqui and Bridie's folk club was celebrated at the Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool on 23 January 2011. Who knows? In another world, veteran performer Jacqueline McDonald, a Geordie raised in Yorkshire, might have been playing on the stage with the Philharmonic Orchestra, as she had wanted to learn to play the oboe. However she discovered that oboes were around £70 whereas she could buy a cheap guitar for £4!
With her guitar and singing partner, Bridie, Jacqui travelled far and wide enjoying a successful and rewarding career in folk music, spanning over 60 years to date.
Still charming her audiences with songs, stories, dancing dolls and reminiscences.
Martyn is a caller who works with many different bands. From local birthday parties with a small duo to late night hoolies nights at top festivals and family ceilidhs at Sidmouth and Whitby folk festivals he loves putting a smile on dancers' faces and making sure that events go with a real swing.
Crook Morris are a local side based in the town of Kendal and celebrated their 40th anniversary last year. Crook dance traditional English Morris in the styles of Cotswold, Welsh border and Rapper sword dancing as well as occasionally performing Mummer's plays. Crook can easily be recognised by their flowery hats, maroon and green odd socks and noisy bells. Crook loves to dance well while having fun and hopes to also be entertaining to the audience! Email email@example.com
Four piece UK eclectic folk rock band The Jigantics, are a talented band of multi instrumentalists who play with a close style and lots of verve and brio. Their frankly astonishing reimagining of well-known and not so well-known songs, stand out with powerful reworking and sheer class. With all four members contributing vocals, the harmonies are spot on and a unique sound, and it’s not just their musicianship that is world class either. They pack a mighty musical punch. Brimming with energy, confidence, style and an ear for a melody and an eye for a lyric, The Jigantics are one of those bands who sound like they should be playing to a festival crowd. See them in Hawkshead Brewery Beer Hall on Saturday night.
A seasoned writer and performer on both sides of the Atlantic, singer-songwriter Mandy Woods, now based in Glastonbury, Somerset, has spent most of her adult life giving in to wanderlust and crafting songs wherever she has happened to find herself on her unconventional journey. Mandy grew up (mainly!) in Oxfordshire, but later spent a decade living, working and making music in Austin, Texas, and regularly visits Nashville. She performs throughout the UK at folk and acoustic clubs, and enjoys playing house concerts. (www.mandywoods.com)
See her in a village cafe venue over the weekend.
All@Sea are Steve & Sandra Harrison, Jen Wilson and John & Maggie Stockdale. They sing shanties and songs of the sea with close harmonies - some even have actions!!
They have sung individually and together at many venues around the country. Great songs, great singing, audience participation encouraged!
Dave taught himself to play guitar in the 1960s because he thought it would annoy his Mum and might make him popular with girls. One of these goals was achieved with great success.
He performed as half (more like two thirds by volume) of the popular duo His Worship and the Pig for twenty several years, until they retired in 2012.. Dave doesn’t like to talk about which of them was the pig because he gets disgGRUNTled.
He says he tried to stop writing songs, but they seem to seep out of him when he's not looking.
So now he is back singing solo. Bringing his quirky humour and a special blend of handmade songs, old and new, funny and poignant and enjoying every minute!
He hopes you will too.
If you want to know a bit more maybe try: -
Catch him in one of the village cafe venues.
Paddy is one of the hardworking folk weekend team. He plays a mean guitar often with a bluesy, ragtime feel. A modest, charming and very talented singer.