Eric Bogle – Eric has recorded 14 CDs and, together with his long term partner John Munro, has literally taken his music to the world. He has toured extensively over the last 25 years or so, and this includes 8 tours of North America, 10 Tours of Europe and God knows how many tours of Australia. He has appeared at every major Folk and Country music festival in Australia and overseas: Port Fairy, Woodford, Tamworth, Gympie Muster, Philadelphia Festival, Newport, Toronto, New Orleans, Vancouver, Edinburgh, you name it, he’s done them all, and many times as well. He has won quite a few awards along the way including the Order of Australia medal for services to the entertainment industry, and a Peace medal from the U.N. for his efforts, through music, to promote peace and racial harmony. All this makes Eric sound like a cross between U2 and Mother Theresa. Well, he’s not, he’s just a literate and thoughtful songwriter who can cut to the heart of the matter with some well-crafted lines. He’s also a warm and engaging stage performer who, with his sharp, often self-deprecating wit and shrewd common sense view on the world, communicates well with an audience and draws them in to his performance. John and Pete Titchener will be performing with Eric. Pete also has one slot as a soloist – very funny and worth seeing. Eric, John and Pete will be performing Saturday and Sunday only.
Damien Leith – is an Irish-Australian singer–songwriter. In just over 10 years Damien has enjoyed platinum-selling albums and been nominated for multiple awards including ARIAs, MTV Australia Video Music Awards and Helpmann Awards. His ARIA wins include Number 1 Chart Awards for the Albums Where We Land and The Winner’s Journey, Highest Selling Album (The Winner’s Journey), and Highest Selling Single and Number 1 Chart Award for the track, Night of My Life. His music has been chosen to appear in commercials and television shows, with his song, Beautiful, accompanying a global Estee Lauder campaign and Not Just For The Weekend, being the theme song for the television series, Saving Kids – a show that Damien also hosted. Damien will be performing Saturday and Sunday only.
Mile Twelve (USA) – a fresh, hard driving young band beautifully walking the line between original and traditional bluegrass. Fast gaining recognition for their outstanding performances in bluegrass and folk circles, Evan Murphy, Bronwyn Keith-Hynes, Nate Sabat, BB Bowness and David Benedict write captivating songs and daring instrumental pieces from diverse influences. Banjo luminary Tony Trischka says, “Mile Twelve is carrying the bluegrass tradition forward with creativity and integrity.”
The New Macedon Rangers (USA) – a versatile acoustic duo comprised of Novocastrian Ashlee Watkins and North Carolinian Andrew Small. Their performances combine vibrant interpretations of early country, bluegrass, and old-time music with original songs and tunes on mandolin, fiddle, banjo, and guitar. Showcasing the 2015 Australian National Bluegrass Mandolin Champion, the duo has also won prizes at some of the most prestigious fiddlers’ conventions in the USA. Ashlee and Andrew recently toured Australia as members of the NC-based old-time string band The Haywood Billy Goats and they have performed at many of Australia’s top folk festivals.
Rob Barratt (UK) – a comic poet, humourist and singer. His brain-tickling, word-mangling performance combines clever word play, verse and song with satire, parody and audience participation. Rob deals with such important topics as squid, data-driven education, Neanderthals, the weather in Scotland, distressed furniture and tuk-tuks. In recent years Rob has appeared at folk, literature and arts festivals all over the UK and in Australia. “His head is well and truly located in “Planet Barratt,” clearly a place of wonderfully bizarre inspiration.” (Coventry Telegraph)
Claymore – Claymore’s reputation as outstanding entertainers has led them to perform at many local and international festivals, they have performed in New York, Scotland, France at the” Festival Interceltique”, the largest Celtic festival in the world many times, New Zealand, Sydney, Melbourne, Launceston Tasmania, National Celtic Festival, Port Fairy Folk Festival, Queenscliff Music Festival, Big Blues Day Out, Perth International Arts Festival, Brunswick Music Festival and many more. The band has played many live radio and television performances in Australia and overseas. With a mixture of traditional Scottish and Irish music and modern self penned celtic rock the band represents the best of new age Folk Music. Through a diverse and unique mix of sound’s featuring guitar, mandolin, fiddle, military snare, the highland bagpipes and even a didgeridoo, it is little wonder Claymore are one of Australia’s most popular festival acts. A not to be missed extravaganza.
The Dingo’s Breakfast Oz Music & Poetry Band still tour Australia from the National in Canberra through to Uranquinty in NSW. From The Alice to the Fairbridge & Nannup Festivals in W.A to Newstead in Victoria and many places in between. The Dingos are returning to the East after a highly successful Perth launch of their new Jack Sorensen CD . . ‘Weaver of Dreams’ in August.
Louey Hesterman’s Whimsy – Veteran songwriter and guitarist Louey Hesterman along with Cora Browne, Christy Cooney, Cyril Moran and Ben Rogers will be performing original songs from Louey’s recent CD, together with recent and all time favourites.
“Wondrous melodies with lyrics to make your heart sing.”
Penny Larkins and Carl Pannuzzo – Truthful and engaging storytelling through song, presence, distinctive yet borderless harmonies, piano, guitar or tenor ukelele. Penny and Carl create exceptional live events, intimately weaving the listener into trust with considered graceful sounds and infectious and engaging stage presence. They are both exceptional songwriters and deliver their music with arresting honesty, peppered with a healthy dose of humility and humour, Penny and Carl work seamlessly together with world-class musicianship to blend sound and energy into light. Their borderless harmonies (both musical and energetic) provide an ever deepening truth to delicately hold you in their storytelling. “Penny and Carl singing together, the gods have not yet created a more sublime experience… I am always awed by yours and Carl’s amazing musicianship and creativity” …(Kristina Olsen)
The Good Girl Song Project (Helen Begley & Penny Larkins) – History meets art in the exquisite songs of The Good Girl Song Project. Penny Larkins and Helen Begley present a powerful account of the journeys that thousands of brave young women voluntarily took to Australia in the 1830’s. With songs by Helen and spoken word devised from eyewitness accounts, Penny shines as the voice of these ancestral female emigrants. This year, Helen and Penny launch and tour The Good Girl Song Project Album and theatre piece. Recorded live on the tall ship Enterprize and to be performed on tall ships and at festivals nationally and internationally.
With a poet’s heart and rocker’s soul, Rich Davies & The Low Road deliver a ‘foot-stomping contemporary folk attack’ (Mick Thomas). Davies spent his formative years in Scottish folk clubs steeped in the ethos of the genre, and his second album, Ghosts, has seen him reconnect with that world, placing song craft front and centre, heart-wrung voice leading the charge. Hailed as ‘The Pogues meets Springsteen, glorious, visceral folk music with a dark undercurrent’ (Post To Wire), The Low Road are renowned for their raucous show and heart-stopping harmonies, traversing tender ballads to upbeat folk tunes.
Richard Perso – The one man excitement machine, Richard has developed a delivery blending multiple genres fused into a folky rocking roots and blues. He doesn’t seem to have enough arms, legs or lungs to pull off such a physically demanding performance but that doesn’t stop him from playing 3 didgeridoos, driving a weapons cache of 3 overdriven acoustic guitars and replacing the drummer with little more than his 2 feet. Quickly establishing himself covering festivals all over Australia and Canada with his unique take of mixing styles from the 1960’s pub rock through to current roots and blues.
The Royal High Jinx – Melbourne’s exciting Gypsy Dance band, The Royal High Jinx write, play & sing music inspired by European traditions, shaded with gypsy jazz, Klezmer & a pinch of classical virtuosity, while sporting a spectacular wardrobe combining dapper suits and burlesque exuberance. Experience a world of colourful costumed ladies, Sarah Busuttil Palmer & Jen Hawley, and suited up gents, Silas Palmer & Terry Cole, singing and rocking out on their instruments. They will drive their rhythms of passion through your soul, while seducing you with a cheeky smile. Come along, have a dance and grab a copy of their brand new album ‘Wheel Of Poor Choices.’ Hijacking the Maldon stage, this is a High Jinx show you won’t want to miss!
Martin Pearson – The world’s funniest male, long-haired, Victorian, piscean folk singer. Martin has risen to fame like a dead pigeon in a water tank. Martin plays the fool in B sharp. Martin is a very funny satirical performer. He has been amusing, even thrilling audiences around the globe for ages now, and if you haven’t seen him live – you’re missing out. Martin tickles the funny bone. The act is full of scintillating , he has an ability to take current events and observations of everyday life, and turn them into side splitting comedy routines.
Janette Geri with Tracey Roberts – Janette’s music is a potent mix of Celtic, contemporary and traditional, cool guitar playing delivered with total honesty and rare warmth. A voice truly remarkable, rich in beauty and power, she delivers songs of substance with grace, soaring passion and great tenderness. “She has a hauntingly beautiful and warm voice that puts instantly a spell on the listener. Wonderful harmonies coupled with stirring rhythms and angelic singing make her music a real treat for your ears.” – Adolf ‘gorhand’ Goriup, FolkWorld
Linda Mizzi (NSW) – had the privilege of performing at the Maldon Folk Festival with her duo Hobo Grace back in 2015. It was wonderful. Cletis Carr now resides in Nashville and she will be performing with her band, Alexander Keller, Stefano Cosentino and Ian Morrison.
Georgia and Garry Rose – Georgia and Garry Rose are a family duo that features Golden Fiddle winner 20 yo. Georgia playing a scintillating range of Celtic tunes from mesmerizing airs to breathtaking jigs and reels. All accompanied on Guitar by Dad Garry (Briagolong band) who songs ranging from betrayal in war to hope of a new start to vampires, immigration and more will transport you through a range of emotions that will have you laughing, crying or singing along.
Dodsworth & Dodsworth – Headed by Graham Dodsworth, the Dodsworth Clan, individual performers in their own right, conspire collectively to bring a dynamic mix of Australian, Celtic, UK and original music to the unsuspecting ears of anybody within earshot.
The boys of Knot O’ The Gate have been performing together for over 10 years. Likely to be found performing at the Celtic Club once a month usually Fridays, wineries, the Shamrock Hotel in Bendigo, or at the many Celtic and folk festivals throughout Victoria.
Eric Purdie –The Glasgow Stand-Up Hour – Delivered in a ‘stand-up’ Glasgow style, Eric Purdie’s comedy presentation features humorous stories and anecdotes about life in Glasgow and the humour of the streets. His outrageous gags and unaccompanied songs provide a window into a culture few of us have seen. Eric’s workshop, entitled “The Glasgow Working Man – A Social History of Glasgow”. In this workshop, Eric talks about growing up in the tenements and working on the building sites describing the heroic struggle of the women and men who fought to improve their conditions.
Khristian Mizzi – 2017’s ‘Troubadour Artist’ Khristian Mizzi, is known for his stirring words and his intimate and powerful live performances. With songs that explore humanity, social injustice and gratitude for life and love, all sung with ‘A voice that sounds like a big warm hug’ , Khristian captures the hearts and imaginations of his audiences and has been cited as being ‘a genuine troubadour of our time’.
The Humbuckin’ Pickups – Four piece harmonies and solid musicianship along with The Humbuckin’ Pickups genuine enjoyment and thrill at performing translates into a truly great show. The Humbuckers are story tellers, grabbing tales from wherever they travel and bringing the stories to life through song. One minute you’ll be in the 1800’s traipsing the floor boards of a country pub with an Australian icon, next you’ll be surviving a shipwreck in Namibia, or even shedding a tear for a rose loving ghost. With an equally strong Americana influence The Humbuckers will also have you kicking up your heels and singing along.
Campbell the Swaggie – a throw back from a bygone age. He has travelled around Australia for over thirty years, and is a man of passion and delights in the great writers and poets, who are not only an anchor for, but are the very essence of Australian folklore. His repertoire which is reputed to include a couple of hundred or more poems, encompassing his own writing and the poems of Banjo Patterson, C.J. Dennis, Henry Lawson and many others. A living history of the culture of a bygone age, he is the last of the swaggies. (https://open.abc.net.au/explore/110063)
Michael Waugh – 2017 Golden Guitar Award nominee and nominated Best Country Album of the Year at The Age Music Victoria Awards, Michael Waugh gives a profound new voice to the Australian experience. His insightful storytelling cuts to the emotional heart of everyday life. A unique, intelligent and emotionally charged performer, Waugh has been compared to the honesty and power of Australian folk and country legends, Mick Thomas, Paul Kelly and John Williamson. He is uniquely Australian and genuine – the real deal. His new single, “Little C Word” has just been released.
John Fegan – After 20 years fronting one of Australia’s most iconic folk rock bands, Rough Red, John has a wealth of stories and songs about people and places from all the far flung corners of Europe and Great Britain. A renowned raconteur and award winning writer the stories resonate with all the colour, pathos and drama of a magical musical journey. They were the first Aussie band to play in many of the great summer festivals of Europe and Scandinavia forging a path that many would follow. John Fegan’s presentation is all about a good yarn and a well-crafted song which takes the listener on a remarkable journey of laughter and music that very few ever get to experience …
Hannah Schmidli – Hannah is a talented young singer-songwriter who has been writing, performing and carving her own niche in indie/folk/acoustic stylings.Her melodies, beautifully blended harmonies and powerful lyrics belie her 16 years of age. She has found a unique way of expressing her own experiences in dealing with everyday teenage issues, whilst appealing to all ages musically. The Maldon Festival has been a large part of Hannah’s musical journey, from the early days of busking on the main street, performing with The Patch Tags, Sadie (Girl on the Hill), to 2016 performing songs from her debut LP.
Meg NightJar – Accompanying herself on guitar and violin, Meg NightJar’s emotive voice melodically meanders through her original contemporary folk ballads, reminding one of the eternal place, the elusive centre and the stories we create in its wobble. She also plays traditional folk songs from England and Ireland. NightJar has previously performed with her father Graham Dodsworth at Maldon Folk Festival and The National Folk Festival in Canberra.
Kestral – Utilising harmonic singing and a unique complex percussive style of guitar playing, Kestral’s music focuses on sublimation and understanding of some of the trickier aspects of existence. Considering individuality and universality to be one and the same through the magic of song and seeing life itself as a great composition he really loves to share this vision.
Angie & the Doc – Locals Angela Mitten and Doc Henry play a folk inflected style of country/bluegrass music which leads them to describe their music as ‘folkgrass’. Their strong “high and lonesome” harmonies coupled with Doc’s intricate guitar fingerpicking and Angie’s solid acoustic bass playing have resulted in a steady stream of engagements in Central Victoria and earned them a growing reputation.
Harpers Bizarre – Central Victorian harp ensemble – our regular local opening act for the Saturday night acoustic concert in the Anglican church.
Traditional Australian Tunes Workshop with Don Gingrich – Have you ever wondered about the people and events in Aussie songs? In this workshop we’ll alternate between talking about the history and singing the songs together. A document with the histories and the scores of the songs, with lyrics will be available for a gold coin donation.
Brewers Own Bush Band – We are a long running Bush Dance Band (Formed in 1978)- specializing in Family Fun Bush Dances! We love to bring the English, Irish, Scottish, American and even Scandinavian traditional dances for the public to have a go at with a focus on Fun!!! We support the Maldon FF to bring this Sat. afternoon dance for folk to enjoy and will continue to do so as long as we are able!
Woody’s World – Imagine a teddy bears picnic at Woodstock and you are joined by Dr Suess and the Muppets. This is the home-spun flavour of Woody’s World live shows that have entertained well over 10,000 children in the past two years. But this is a new show with a difference! Inside Woody’s Magic Box is are all the acts and talent a child can imagine; music, stories, colourful puppets, laughter and engaging activities that will keep everyone on the edge of their seat. But it is up to the audience to make up the show – it’s a lucky dip. Everything from the theme song, to very nature of the show is made up on the spot by each audience member that reaches into the box to draw the next act. Dave Splatt will also be performing puppetry in the street.
Michael the Balloonologist – Michael the Balloonologist is an entertainer who is twisted but not bitter. He continues to delight festival goers, young and old, with boggling balloon brilliance – hot air optional.
The Chat-Warblers choir – A women’s choir from Castlemaine, now in its 15th year with a cheerful wide repertoire, and a discerning taste in both songs and cakes, singing for social justice, local wildflowers, our beautiful rivers, through locally written songs, which speak of our place and our lives in this time.
Rudy The One Man Band – carries a drum on his back with Macadamia, or Macca, the monkey beating the drum, Pistachio, or Archie, a baby gorilla playing the tambourine, Nutmeg the Monkey sitting on a swing under the drum, and finally Mr P Nut, an adult gorilla, sitting on top of the drum playing the cymbals. To complete the picture he wears a large umbrella over the top, a piano accordion over which he plays a guitar, a mandolin or a fiddle.
The Britannia Morris Men – Once more the valiant Britannia Morris Men will sally forth from their hideout in the Croydon hills to enchant the good folk of Maldon with that ancient, traditional, ritualistic art that is Morris Dancing. Oh, and we’ll bring some friends too – they will do, wait for it, MORE Morris Dancing!
Ukes D’Jour – love strumming, singing, laughing and performing together and sharing the fun with whoever will listen. Feet won’t stop tapping and the smile won’t leave your face with music that includes old style blues with a bouncy mix of Bluegrass/Jug and Jazz. Not only Ukuleles! Our sound explodes with Ukes, Bass, Banjo, Guitar, and Washboard; plus Sax, Kazoo, Harp and Jug! A mix of ages from youngens to grey heads, Ukes D’Jour hits the streets to delight both young and old!
Uke joint Jumpers – The Uke Joint Jumpers were established in a sly grog shop under an old speakeasy in the regional gold mining city of Bendigo, Victoria. Cutting their chops at the second Bendigo Blues and Roots Festival, this eclectic group play their unique ukulele barrelhouse blues, covering the songs of Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker and Louis Jordan. Good enough to get the crowd jumping like bed springs on a honeymoon, get on board the Uke Joint Jumpers Blues Express.
Kyneton Street Band – The Kyneton Street Band provides a vibrant outdoor band experience, featuring marimbas, wind, brass and percussion instruments in a unique mobile format. Led by Andy Rigby who brings his varied repertoire of Latin and African inspired music to the streets of Maldon.
The ‘Rhymer from Ryde’ is a true entertainer in every sense of the word. He lives for the stage and the thrill of connecting with a crowd and the ‘adrenaline rush’ that performing brings. Graeme’s audiences become an integral part of his shows as he draws them into his wide range of stories sourced from his extensive repertoire of Traditional, Contemporary & Original Bush Verse. Comedy forms the backbone of his performances as he lets loose his larrikin nature to ensure the audiences leave the marquee laughing! He’ll also invoke their deepest emotions with his touching serious recitations and throw in a good old fashioned yarn or joke for good measure. He’s a ‘live-wire’ sort of character, good with a quick ‘ad-lib’ or pithy observation on life’s funnier moments. Whatever you do, don’t miss him!
Raging Bull – a very animated bush poet
Geoffrey W Graham – He’s a storyteller, a poet, muso, and actor – a theatrical communicator- suffering from an obsessive disorder based on a passion for Australian heritage. Thrives on connecting to an audience on an emotional level and spreading the word across Australia about icons like Banjo, Henry and CJ Dennis. His Dinkum Oz style encompasses layback humour, audience interaction and a stunning grasp of bush verse. Specialising in theme shows; his most recent shows are The Sentimental Bloke and Voices of War: An Anzac Story.
Wedderburn Charming Emus, Gay Charmers of Lake Charm Old Time Dance Band
Sweet Potato Pie (Tas) – Folk music for all ages! Sweet Potato Pie breathe new life into Americana family favourites as well as obscure gems that have undeservedly been gathering dust. They will tickle everyone’s fancy (but especially the little folk!) with their sweet harmonies and playful arrangements.
Kevin McCarthy (NT) – Songs & Stories from Crocodile Country – Songs and stories from Australia’s Deep North – a land where tropical sunsets are a constant delight, and the dance of the campfire throws flickering light, across a silently-moving tidal creek, where red beady eyes are waiting to feed.
Jeanette Guillespie & Duncan Brown – our regular Sunday gospel concert hosts and they will also be coordinating the Saturday tribute concert to Danny Spooner.
Festival Choir with Jane Thompson, James Rigby & Margaret Crichton
Garry Hayes is based North-East of Melbourne and has performed for over 40 years in bands and as a soloist. He now performs solo with vocal, guitars and looping pedal in a folk-rock-country style.
A skilled and versatile guitarist, multi-instrumentalist, vocalist and accompanist, Garry has performed extensively in his local area and at many festivals throughout Victoria, including the Port Fairy Folk Festival, as one of 10 finalists in the Songwriting Award. Garry writes songs on local, historic, social and political themes and with some of these won the Maldon Minstrel Award at the 2016 Maldon Festival.
Goose’s Bridle – 5 Piece Goodtime Music Band, based in Guildford, Central Victoria. Vocals & Harmonies, Ukuleles, Bass, Drums, Bells, Whistles & Stuff, a quirky whiz bang combo from the Forties to the Noughties.
Brandon Lee is a young singer/Songwriter who’s folky, rocky acoustic sounds allude to a diverse style of music. Having over ten years of songwriting under his belt, his fingerstyle guitar and mellow tunes are sure to give new meaning to easy listening.
Girl Friday – Last year’s Roddy Read Award winner Tracey Hogue evokes a sense of nostalgia, innocence and melancholy. Her rich, soulful voice and heartfelt lyrics remind us that people have felt and sung about the same things forever and a day. She will be joined by the spectacular Ashley Jones on violin for the festival. “Girl Friday’s arrangements mark her out as an interesting writer on ukulele and guitar – but it’s that evocative, nostalgic style that has us in the palm of her gently strumming hand.” Mandy Connell
Be entertained by the lively performances of the O’SHEA-RYAN IRISH DANCERS, dressed in their colourful costumes and accompanied by the bright toe-tapping music of Irish Jigs and Reels. Many Senior Dancers from this Group have performed at Festivals throughout Europe and Asia, and a Group have recently returned from their performances at International Folk Festivals in Greece and Spain, and presenting the Irish segment at the International Military Tattoo in Malta.