Every year, Worcester Music Festival includes a packed programme of folk events. Promoter John Taylor gives us an insight into the ‘folk face’ of the festival…

John Taylor - WMF Promoter & Committee Member

Click image to find out more about John

Each year Worcester Music Festival attracts more and more applications from folk musicians. So much so that it is now one of the most subscribed to genres. Starting off in a small venue it soon became obvious that somewhere larger was required, so in 2010 we used the Guildhall for the first time and remained there for the next three years. This move produced bigger bands, bigger events and more variety, including ceilidhs.

In fact, it’s now fair to say that the folk events have evolved into a mini-fest within WMF, including an “open house” jam session at The Farriers Arms each year in which anyone can participate for a few hours making all kinds of acoustic folky music. With ever-increasing audiences and line-ups, the main folk events had to move to a new home in 2013 – St Swithun’s Institute.

The mention of “folk music” can sometimes be a bit of a deterrent due to preconceived opinions or ideas as to what it involves. With a such a wide choice to be made from the applications I have tried over the years to introduce as wide a definition of folk as possible, so that there is something from “traditional” to “contemporary”. Judging by past attendance numbers this approach has been quite successful.

2014 will see the introduction of an extra folk venue to accommodate more acts overall from the 170 plus that have applied. It is always disappointing to only offer a small percentage of applicants a performance slot. To whet the appetite you can expect to see headline performances this year from Bitterroots, Dryftwood, Fred’s House, Blue Horyzon, and last but not least Granny’s Attic! The support line-up isn’t bad either.

Come and enjoy.




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