30 July 2023
Oi Va Voi, the London-based band that blends klezmer, dance, indie rock and alt-folk, delivered a stunning performance at the Cambridge Folk Festival 2023. The band, which has been active since 2000, showcased their musical versatility and wanderlust. The audience was captivated by the band’s energy and charisma, as well as the virtuosity of their musicians, especially violinist Anna Phoebe. The band received a standing ovation at the end of their set, and left the crowd wanting more. Oi Va Voi proved once again why they are one of the most innovative and exciting bands in the world music scene.
Jenny Colquitt is a rising star in the Americana scene, with a strong and expressive voice, impactful lyrics and winning melodies1. She was named as one of RnR Magazine’s ‘Ones to Watch’ in 2022 and won the FATEA ‘Female Artist of the Year’ award in 2021/20223. She performed on the Den stage at the Cambridge Folk Festival 2023, showcasing her talent and charm to a captivated audience.
One of the highlights of her set was the song Little Blue Boy, a lullaby-inspired tune that tells the story of a boy who falls asleep under a haystack while his animals wander off. The song has a gentle and soothing melody, with acoustic guitar and harmonica accompaniment. Colquitt’s vocals are sweet and tender, conveying the affection and concern for the sleeping boy. The song also has a touch of humour, as the animals try to wake him up but fail. The song is based on the traditional nursery rhyme Little Boy Blue, but Colquitt adds her own twist and flair to it.
Little Blue Boy is a song that showcases Colquitt’s ability to craft engaging and memorable songs, with a blend of folk, pop and Americana influences. It is a song that appeals to both children and adults, as it evokes nostalgia, innocence and warmth. Colquitt’s performance of Little Blue Boy on the Den stage was a delight to watch and listen to, and it left the audience wanting more.
f you are looking for a band that can make you dance, laugh and sing along, then you should not have missed The Chair at the Cambridge Folk Festival 2023. The Chair is an eight-piece band from Orkney that plays a fusion of folk, blues, rock, dub and klezmer music with a lot of energy and humour. They have been described as a “must-see festival band” and a “rampant ruckus of fiddles, banjos, accordions and drums”. Their latest album, Orkney Monster, is a tribute to the mythical beast that is said to lurk in the waters around their home island. The album features catchy tunes, witty lyrics. The Chair will played on stage 2 on Sunday at 4:30 pm. I did not regret seeing them, as The Chair delivered a show that left me breathless and exhilarated. The Chair is one of the highlights of the Cambridge Folk Festival 2023, and I am gladd I did not miss them!
I had the pleasure of attending the Cambridge Folk Festival on Sunday, July 30th, 2023, and one of the highlights of the day was the performance of Akram Abdulfattah, a young Palestinian-American violinist who mesmerized the audience with his unique and innovative music style. He played with his quartet “Awan”, which means “time” in Arabic, and they blended jazz with middle eastern and Indian influences, creating a rich and diverse musical experience. Akram Abdulfattah is a virtuoso on the violin, and he showcased his skills and versatility in every song. He also introduced each piece with a brief explanation of its origin and inspiration, giving us a glimpse into his culture and vision. He received national and international recognition for his talent and creativity, winning several prestigious awards. He also expressed his desire to use instrumental music as a tool to introduce the world to the Palestinian rich culture, legacy, and folklore. His performance was captivating, inspiring, and uplifting, and I highly recommend anyone who loves music to check him out. He is a rising star in the folk scene, and I look forward to hearing more from him in the future.
Hollie Cook is a singer and keyboardist who blends reggae, pop, and soul with a tropical flair. She has been making waves in the music scene since her debut album in 2011, and has collaborated with artists like Prince Fatty, Ian Brown, and Jamie T. She is also the daughter of Sex Pistols drummer Paul Cook, and the goddaughter of Boy George.
On Saturday, July 29, 2023, she graced the Stage 2 of the Cambridge Folk Festival, one of the longest running and most famous folk festivals in the world. The festival, which takes place in the grounds of Cherry Hinton Hall, offers a diverse and eclectic line-up of folk and roots music from across the globe.
Hollie Cook delivered a captivating performance that showcased her unique style and voice. She sang songs from her latest album, Happy Hour, which was released in 2022 and features a mix of upbeat and mellow tracks. She also performed some of her older hits, such as “Body Beat”, “That Very Night”, and “Tiger Balm”.
The audience was enchanted by her charisma and energy, and sang along to her catchy choruses. She interacted with the crowd, telling stories and jokes between songs. She also expressed her gratitude for being part of the festival, and praised the other artists who were playing on the same stage.
Hollie Cook proved that she is a versatile and talented artist who can blend different genres and influences into her own distinctive sound. She brought a tropical breeze to the Cambridge Folk Festival, and left the audience wanting more. She is definitely one to watch in the reggae scene, and beyond.
The Elephant Sessions are a Scottish indie-folk band that have won several awards for their energetic and innovative music. They blend traditional instruments like fiddle, mandolin and guitar with drums, bass and synths to create a sound that is both fresh and rooted in their heritage. They played on stage 1 of the Cambridge Folk Festival on Sunday, July 30, 2023, and delivered a stunning performance that had the crowd dancing and cheering. Their set included songs from their latest album, What Makes You, as well as some older favourites like Wet Field Day and Lament for Lost Dignity. They also surprised the audience with a cover of The Proclaimers’ I’m On My Way, which they dedicated to their fellow Scots who were headlining the festival. The Elephant Sessions proved that they are one of the most exciting and original bands on the folk scene today, and left the fans wanting more.
Angélique Kidjo is one of the greatest artists in international music today, a creative force with thirteen albums to her name. She performed at the Cambridge Folk Festival 2023 on Sunday, July 30, at the Cherry Hinton Hall2. Here is a short review of her show:
Angélique Kidjo dazzled the audience with her vibrant and eclectic mix of musical influences, from West African traditions to American R&B, funk and jazz. She sang in multiple languages, including her native Fon, Yoruba and French, as well as English and Spanish. She also paid tribute to some of her musical heroes, such as Miriam Makeba, Celia Cruz and Nina Simone. She invited the crowd to join her in singing and dancing, creating a joyful and energetic atmosphere. She also shared stories of her life and activism, expressing her passion for women’s rights, education and environmental issues. She ended her show with a stunning rendition of her hit song “Agolo”, which earned her a standing ovation from the festival-goers. Angélique Kidjo proved once again why she is called “Africa’s premier diva” by Time Magazine.