For the first time ever the island of Majorca is to play host to the UK Folk Festival. It is known as "the festival that puts a smile on your face, a song in your heart and the sun on your back" rather than the traditional British folk festival where the sun occasionally, makes a rare appearance and the weekend is spent invariably in a soggy wet tent and a pair of mucky wellies!
Over 20 top folk acts from the UK & Ireland plus Majorca’s very own BOC Mallorca will be appearing at the five-day Costa del Folk Festival based at the BH Mallorca Hotel in Magalluf from 23–27 April. The idea of a folk festival in sunny Spain comes from UK-based holiday firm Enjoy Travel, which specialises in music and dance events.
They’ve based their thinking on the fact that the weather often spoils similar events in the UK, while it’s aimed at holidaymakers from the UK and expatriates on the island who enjoy folk music. The principal compere for the event will be folk singer, broadcaster and comedian Mike Harding, who has been hosting this event since its inception in 2014. He will be on hand again this year to ensure that everything runs without a hitch. Mike is a mean banjo player and as well as his role as compere he will be seen from time to time, mainly late at night heading up the various sessions that will inevitably spring up around the hotel complex.
Mike says: “The idea of a folk festival with (virtually) guaranteed good weather is just too good to be true. We’ve lined up loads of the best folk, roots and acoustic acts the UK and Ireland have to offer.”
The line-up under Mike’s stewardship is awesome and here are just a few names to whet your appetite:
They make modern, folk-based British music, acoustic at heart sometimes intense, sometimes rocking. Since 1978 they’ve toured 35 countries - festivals, concerts, bars, rallies, jails, and now Majorca. They’ve also won five BBC Folk Awards and made thirteen studio albums and one DVD and we’re sure that they will have a few with them for sale in April.
It is generally recognized that the first attempts at a closed circuit central heating system resulted in the birth of the Uileann Pipes, but not the way Mick Doonan plays them. This is a family band with attitude and are firm favourites with all Costa del Folk customers, having performed at all previous events in Spain and Portugal. Definitely not to be missed!
With a line-up consisting of a bouzouki, bodhrain, fiddle, button accordion and banjo, they are all seriously accomplished musicians with a worldwide reputation. It's to be hoped that they remember that, if and when they play the odd hornpipe or two, the timing has changed in Majorca from triple time to Greenwich Mean Time plus an hour added on.
Curtis Eller’s American Circus
Curtis Eller is a banjo player, songwriter, rock and roll singer and an all-round good egg. After beginning his show business career at the age of seven as a juggler and acrobat, the Detroit native turned to the banjo and set out for New York City where he rose from obscurity as “New York’s angriest yodelling banjo player”. Citing Buster Keaton, Abraham Lincoln and Elvis Presley as his primary musical influences, Curtis became a staple of the beer halls, burlesque houses and underground theatres of the eastern seaboard and now it’s Majorca.
Angela Schofield, one of Enjoy Travel’s managers, says: “We are delighted to be bringing the festival to the beautiful island of Majorca and chose this destination as we were looking for a home that the festival can grow into and become a fixed annual event on the island. Magalluf is often on the receiving end of some pretty bad press in the UK. Well we’re about to change all that.”
“We are really looking forward to a fantastic festival and if you’d like to experience some or all of it then don’t hesitate to contact us.”
email@example.com or call +44 1254 445050
There are many more solo artists, duos and trios and groups scheduled to appear during the five-day festival, too many to mention here but all are equally good. Additional information that you may require is listed on www.costadelfolk.co.uk or www.enjoytravel.co.uk. There are literally hundreds of folkies travelling from the UK and Ireland so a good time is assured. If you live on the island, then you are more than welcome to come along.
Full five-day festival passes or just individual day passes are available as follows:
Full five-day festival wristband, 100 euros.
Daily entry. 25 euros.
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