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Vancouver Folk Music Festival Thrills: Photos Capture Spirit of Brilliant Festival Featuring Artists like Bruce Cockburn, The New Pornographers, And A Global List Of Musicians
by Staff Writer

Summer’s here and that means it’s that time of year for one of Vancouver’s favorite music festival, the 39th annual Vancouver Folk Music Festival, to carry on it’s tradition of entertaining people of all ages. For 3 days, July 15 to 17, thousands of people flocked to hear and see from a eclectic list of performers who astrummed, sang and danced at various stages set up at Jericho Beach Park.

Selected photos taken during the 3 days show only a selection of the dozens of performers who entertained the largely enthusiastic festival crowd.

On Friday night, people got a sampling of hoedown music, courtesy of Mandolin Orange, Sarah Jane Scoulten, and The Bills.
On Stage 2, British performers, Lucy Ward, The Young’uns and the Moulettes faced the friendly crowd with lively music. At another stage, famous slam poet, Shane Koyczan and the Short Story Long, amazed people with his enthusiasm and his powerful words.

Canadian Elage Diouf took to Stage 3 with his upbeat, rousing Senegelese-inspired music. He thrust out his hands in enthusiasm, much to the delight of the audience. (see photo below).

The schedule for Friday also saw Vancouver’s own, The New Pornographers, (below) take to the stage full of the raw power of their carefully crafted songs.

On Saturday, there were more new performers who enthralled the audience. Some artists came as far away as China. Dressed in partly traditional gear and performing traditional instruments,(see photo below) Aginai’s music was a careful blend of electric guitar meshed with hypnotic and eastern Mongolian folk music. Even if people didn’t understand the singer’s nonEnglish lyrics, it was all easy listening.

Over on Stage 6, a big, sweaty crowd danced to a group of performers, including Venezuela’s ensemble group, fronted by Betsayda Machado. (pictured). The feel-good Afro-Latin American music got people smiling, happy and dancing with enthusiasm.

The weather was mostly favorable throughout the weekend, except for Sunday, when a few showers showed up for a brief, few hours.

By the time the incomparable, Bruce Cockburn, took to the stage at 8 pm, the rain disappeared and many people who brought rain gear, doffed it off as quickly as they put it on.

Around the festival grounds, one could see a few young people dressed up in fun, festive gear. On ocassion, one could see unique sights: like a man walking with a book on his head, or an older man wearing loose-fitting clothing twirling around to the sound of the music. (see photos).

In the kids’ area, young children were busy with plenty of activities, such as going on stilts (see photo below), playing instruments, or swinging the hula hoops.

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IMG_7084Left: Bruce Cockburn

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If You Plan On Going To One Festival This Year Go See: The Vancouver Folk Music Festival
by Staff Writer

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Photos: Left: Bruce Cockburn and Ajinai plays the Folk Fest this year. (Photo courtesy of VFMF media centre)

Are you ready to have fun? Do you have friends in town or if you are planning a staycation or have the weekend free, you must go to the world’s friendliest and hippest music festival, The Vancouver Folk Music Festival. From July 15-17, performers from all over the world will show off their talents at 7 beach front stages at Jericho Beach Park.  How many performers? Well there’s more than 60 acts from more than 18 countries.

You’ll hear music from all over the world. Here’s just a partial list of some amazing performers.

-There’s a fusion of experimental Afro-beat from Jojo Abot.

– Ajinai (China) offers up ancient sounds from Mongolia. Unknown-5

-Folk, gospel, soul music comes courtesy of Birds of Chicago.

-Desert Blues is offered by Faris Amin. (Italy, Algeria).

-Grammy awards nominee, singer-songwriter, Hayes Carll from Texas, offers up some clever, roots-oriented lyrics.

-Music legend, Bruce Cockburn, will dazzle the audience with lots of heart-felt songs from his 40-plus career as a singer-songwriter.

-Slam poetry champion, Shane Koyczan (British Columbia)  comes back to the fest, bringing along his back-up band, the Short Story Long. If you have never seen Shane perform, you are in for a treat. In fact at one live showing, one of his poems hit a nerve and tears were streaming down my face. Wow. That’s truly up close and personal.

-BC’s own, The New Pornographers takes to the stage with their creative, lively and wonderful music.

-For a taste of Algiers, catch the talented Karim Saada who will show audiences his smooth voice and his skill on many instruments, including the banjo, the mandol, and the guitar.

To get a full list of the performers and to get ticket information, go to : http://thefestival.bc.ca/2016-home/

Don’t forget to bring extra cash because you have a chance to meet some of the performers and buy their music at the festival.

Another wonderful thing about the festival is it’s laid-back atmosphere. You will meet regulars who come to the fest annually. There are even tents set up by attendees who relax before and after the concerts, and many people of all ages get up and simply dance. You may also see men and women of all ages, swing the hula hoop.

The festival is family-friendly because there’s even a childrens’ area called, “Little Folks Village.” Children can learn to make crafts, get their faces painted, and also listen to interactive story-telling.

Environmentally-Friendly

I also like that the festival promotes green initiatives.

No bottled water is sold at the festival so people are encouraged to bring their own bottle.

Compostable cups and cutlery are provided at the site.

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Below: from a previous festival, a woman shows off her hoola hoop skills.

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Current Family Friendly Events
Bring the whole family to see tons of top performers and musicians. The Kitsilano Showboat has been entertaining locals and visitors for decades. On a recent visit, I attended showboat and listened to the amazing big band sounds from the Royal City Concert Band.

To see the schedule go to: http://www.kitsilanoshowboat.com

 

Below the Royal City Concert Band.

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July 10th

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