All Folk & Bluegrass News

That's a wrap for 2018 gigs... we think!

Well, we have certainly been very lucky here in Dorrigo over many years to host gigs under the Festival wings. We've used many local venues to feature Australian and International artists. In 2018, we have come to the end of our programmed gigs before the 17th Festival. With no more gigs in sight (keep your eyes peeled as this may change!) we are busily preparing for another wonderful weekend of music in October. Our line-up is complete and you can read about and listen to our artists on the Artist List. 

Here are some snaps and words about how we felt about the concerts. 

oneup rachel

In January we were thrilled to host a Double whammy gig featuring One Up, Two Down (AUS and USA) and Rachel Baiman (USA) in the Megan Hall. The hall was full and the dinner table set with filling food for everyone. All the musicians had been with us at the festival before and so the concert was a meeting of familiar faces and fans, with a couple of newbies from far and wide, who have since become apart of the regular Megan Hall audience. Every aspect of the evening sought and received emotion and reaction, with topics such as politics, shame and love sung of and traditional and original songs and tunes played. 

republic strings

Also in January we were honoured to host Darol Anger & the Republic of Strings (Tristan Clarridge, Monique Clare and Emmy Phelps) in the Old Gazette Theatre. This was the first gig in the theatre for many years and the crowd was delightful and supportive. There was a great many years of musical knowledge and collaborative skills displayed. It was so nice to see Brisbane local cello extraordinaire Monique Clare playing with such renowned musicians from America. At intermission we were greeted with home-baked cakes with fresh tea and coffee to wash it down. Dave faced some new challenges with sound levels but never-the-less provided top sound. We were absolutely chuffed to have Darol, Tristan, Monique and Emmy in Dorrigo! 

liz n fred

In February we had wonderful Fred Smith & Liz Frencham in Dorrigo Wholefoods. This was the first time we'd worked with Kenton & Monique in their cafe outside of the Festival weekend. They served up delicious home-made sushi, curry and a tapioca dessert and everyone's bellies were well satisfied. Mind you, their youngest had just broken her arm and was in hospital! Fred's storytelling made us laugh, cry and think while Liz's beautiful harmonies soared through the venue. Dave did a magnificent job testing the boundaries of a new venue. Thank you to everyone for supporting the evening. 


The year just kept getting better and better; in March we had Lindsay Lou and band from Nashville,USA in the Megan Hall. Wow, it was an absolute ripper evening! Thank you to Lindsay, Josh, PJ and Jeff for making our hearts sing. The audience was energised and happily participative with hearty harmonies, and many had travelled from far and wide to fill the hall. A massive thank you goes to George Jackson for setting Lindsay and band up with the Australian Tour via Due South Touring Co. It was the first Megan Hall gig with drums! 

flats n sharps

Also in March Flats & Sharps from Cornwall,UK took to the stage in the Old Gazette Theatre. The Theatre was full as the Cornish accents and slang made everyone laugh. We couldn't help but catch onto some of their phrases! It's been so brilliant to see young musicians doing right by the live music industry and Flats & Sharps are no exception. It was lovely to see Australia's very own Robyn Martin stepping in to play Double Bass. The night was bangin'! 

Paul Mckenna

In May we had the pleasure of working alongside Woodfordia Inc. to host the Paul McKenna Band from Glasgow, Scotland in the Old Gazette Theatre. The Theatre was cosy as we were blown away by the Scottish vocals and instrumentation. There's nothing like seeing a band that you love live; this one went well and beyond any expectations! I personally couldn't get enough of their thick Scottish accents. It was a perfect encounter, as this Festival celebrates the first year of having a Scottish band at the Festival, coming from Glasgow too. Thank you to the Paul McKenna Band for making the trek up the mountain. 

string theories wholefoods

We fought off the cold of Winter with String Theories in Dorrigo Wholefoods. It was a pleasure to have the trio back in Dorrigo after having them at the Festival. The cafe was filled with stunning acoustic instrumentation and vocals from the Sydney based trio. We were grateful for Kenton's hearty cooking as the chill crept about outside. We are very lucky in Dorrigo to have international musicians but we are extremely lucky to have the infrastructure to host and support local Australian artists too. There's two things we love on the Festival committee and that's music and food, especially together! 

john trio

We finished off 2018's gigs with the John Flanagan Trio from Melbourne, in the Megan Hall. We were extremely lucky to have the JFT at the Festival in 2016 and we are over the moon to announce they're coming again this year! There were once again familiar faces and fans in the audience and they joined in for some gorgeous sing-a-longs. John Flanagan said that Dorrigo and it's Festival is a secret best kept that way. We have to agree! We are extremely lucky to have such amazing and beautiful musicians coming our way. We couldn't fault one moment of the evening; the trestle table was heaped with warming food, the Hall had had heating installed, brilliant sound from Dave, a lovely audience, and lively tunes from Bill on the piano. The John Flanagan Trio delivered a beautiful concert with perfectly gorgeous and warming harmonies. 

We loved every moment of these gigs and can't thank everyone involved enough! Special thank you's go out to the Musicians, DF&BF Inc Committee, Dave on sound, the Megan Hall and Theatre Committee's, Kenton & Monique at Dorrigo Wholefoods, Woodfordia Inc. and George Jackson. 

Please keep an eye on our Concert page just in case we are able to host another gig before the Festival! All the best, the Festival Team.