Pokey Lafarge & The South City Three

The Vancouver Folk Music Festival is ready to roll through Vancouver, offering three days of ground-breaking musical performances set against a backdrop of sea and mountains. This year’s 35th annual lineup will feature 60 artists and groups from around the world between Friday, July 13 and Sunday, July 15.

Vancouver Folk Fest Day 2
[Vancouver Folk Music Festival, Day 2; photo © Ariane Colenbrander, 2011]

In just over two weeks, Jericho Beach Park will once again be transformed into a village of music tents, local artisan offerings, eclectic food options, and a Little Folks Area. A variety of on-site amenities makes it easy to spend an entire day out enjoying a unique mix of music.

As in past Festival years, familiar and well known artists mingle and perform with new and rising stars. North American artists share stages, even workshop concerts, with artists from almost every other continent on the earth; varied musical genres and cultures come together to create the magic of discovery. This year’s roster of artists is geared to deliver an incredible musical experience.

Ani di Franco
[Ani DiFranco; photo courtesy of VFMF]
Some of this year’s Vancouver Folk Music Festival talent will include Ani DiFranco, renowned roots singer/songwriter Lucinda Williams, Seattle’s The Head and the Heart, world superstar K’NAAN, Newfoundland’s Hey Rosetta!, South Africa’s The Johnny Clegg Band, Vancouver’s own beloved Dan Mangan and award-winning singer Serena Ryder.

hey rosetta!
[Hey Rosetta!; photo courtesy of VFMF]

There are seven outdoor stages to enjoy during the three day festival that includes a Friday night opening concert.

Emmanuel Jal
[Emmanuel Jal closing the Folk Festival on the Main Stage; photo © Ariane Colenbrander, 2011]

This is one of my favourite summer festivals for its lively, inclusive atmosphere.

The festival also prides itself on its sustainable and environmentally responsible practices: no plastic water bottles are sold on site (patrons are asked to bring re-usable containers to fill with water from locations around the park); reduce, reuse, and recycle receptacles are provided; all plates are washed (food is not served on paper plates). A committee of dedicated volunteers ensures that the park will be both protected and respected.

Vancouver Folk Fest Day 2
[Vancouver Folk Music Festival, Day 2; photo © Ariane Colenbrander, 2011]

This year, The Memory Project invites festival lovers to share their past festival memories on the festival’s website to celebrate a 35 year legacy of personal and momentous highlights. Festival artist Veda Hille will compose new songs based on those memories to be unveiled at a main stage performance during the festival weekend.

Full details on all festival initiatives are available online.

Vancouver Folk Music Festival

Dates: Friday, July 13 (5 to 11 pm); Saturday and Sunday, July 14 and 15 (10 am to 11 pm)
Venue: Jericho Beach Park, Vancouver
Tickets: Online, by phone 604.602.9798, in person at the Festival Box Office (Suite 100, 2425 Quebec Street, Vancouver; open weekday office hours), or at Zulu Records, Highlife Records, Neptoon Records, and Banyen Books.
Adult weekend passes: $150 (Advance prices to July 12) to $165 (at the gate July 13)
Adult one-day Saturday and Sunday tickets: $75 (to July 12) to $80 (at the gate)
Adult Friday evening tickets: $45 (to July 12) to $50 (at the gate)
Students (19+ years), Youth (13-18 years), Elder (65+ years) and Group (15 or more) discounts available for Friday evening, one-day, and weekend passes.
Children under 12 are free when accompanied by an adult.

Cedric Watson
[Cedric Watson; photo courtesy of VFMF]

2012 Festival Artists

The Atomic Duo (TX)
The Barr Brothers (QC/RI)
Geoff Berner (BC)
Mark Berube (QC)
Besh o droM (Hungary)
Bette and Wallet (QC)
Blitz the Ambassador (NY)
Bombolessé (QC)
Bryan Bowers (WA)
Canailles (QC)
The Cave Singers (WA)
Chatham County Line (NC)
The Johnny Clegg Band (South Africa)
Amelia Curran (NF/NS)
Dala (ON)
Kat Danser (AB)
Ani DiFranco (NY)
Colleen Eccleston (BC)
Ramblin’ Jack Elliott (CA)
e.s.l. (BC)
David Essig (BC)
Mike Farris & the Cumberland Saints (TN)
Fearing & White (Stephen Fearing & Andy White) (NS/Ireland)
Roy Forbes (BC)
Jaron Freeman Fox and the Opposite of Everything (ON)
Tret Fure (WI)
Los Gaiteros de San Jacinto (Colombia)
Leela Gilday (NT)
Good For Grapes (BC)
The Head and the Heart (WA)
Hey Rosetta (NF)
Veda Hille (BC)
H’Sao (QC; Tchad)
Jaffa Road (ON)
Martyn Joseph (UK)
K’NAAN (CAN/(Somalia))
Murray McLauchlan (ON)
Dan Mangan (BC)
Marley’s Ghost (CA)
Emel Mathlouthi (Tunisia)
Minor Empire (ON)
Mrigya (India)
Holly Near (CA)
The Once (ON)
Evalyn Parry (ON)
Pied Pumkin (BC)
Possessed by Paul James (TX)
River City Extension (NJ)
Alejandra Robles (Mexico) 
Serena Ryder (ON)
Shakura S’Aida (ON)
Sidi Touré (Mali)
Silk Road (BC)
Wake Owl (BC)
Cedric Watson et Bijou Créole (LA)
Wazimbo (Wazimbo and the Orchestra Marrabenta Star de Mozambique) (Mozambique)
Ken Whiteley and the Levy Sisters (ON)
Lucinda Williams (US)
The Wood Brothers (GA/NY)
Royal Wood (ON)

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