Folk roots, polish vibes and refugee all-stars.
There’s no doubt that Hull has a rich folk heritage. It’s a heritage that has played an important part in the distinctive place the city is today and it’s completely worth shouting about.
So, to celebrate, from 6 – 8 April, BBC Radio 3 are hosting a series of live concerts which showcase Hull talent whilst highlighting our city’s close international links in Sierra Leone and Poland.
Broadcast on BBC Radio 3, the festival will feature artists like Yorkshire’s own Eliza Carthy, The Waterson family, Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars and the punk, trance and traditional Polish vibes of the Warsaw Village Band – all hailing from (you guessed it) Warsaw, Poland.
Here’s what to expect from four evenings of top quality folk.
Hull Truck Theatre (£17.50) 8pm, 6 April
First up on the uproot list is singer/songwriter Eliza Carthy who will perform alongside the Arms Wide Orchestra. Although not strictly an orchestra, not strictly a choir – the band will be led by Eliza, performing music inspired by the legacy of Hull’s Waterson Family.
Support will come from the angelic sounds of multi-instrumentalist Olivia Chaney who has worked with the likes of triphop duo Zero 7.
Hull Truck Theatre (£17.50) 7.30pm, 7 April
The Waterson family were leading figures in the English folk revival in the 1960s and 70s with a distinctive sound brought together from their closely woven harmonies. Now, they return to their home
town Hull for a special show with a first half that celebrates the traditions of the Waterson Family’s vocal harmonies, and a second half with The Gift Band, fronted by Norma Waterson. The only remaining member of the original 1960s line-up with her daughter Eliza Carthy and husband Martin Carthy.
In the interval, profiles of refugee musicians in Hull will be featured.
Hull Truck Theatre (£15.00) 1pm, 8 April
If you want to hear a healthy concoction of punk, ethno, trance, folk and roots, the Warsaw Village Band are definitely for you. Featuring vocals, violin, bass and percussion, the group mix together contemporary music inspired by Poland’s rural traditions. One member plays an incredibly rare Polish instrument called the dulcimer – a free-standing, trapezoidal instrument with strings struck by handheld hammers.
Supporting will be singer Fay Hield – referred to as folk music’s most eminent modern voices by MOJO.
Hull Truck Theatre (£17.50) 7.30pm, 8 April
Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars formed in a refugee camp during the country’s civil strife, inspiring audiences across the world with songs of joy, faith and hope.
The performance will celebrate Hull’s twin-town links with Freetown and recognise Hull as the birthplace of politician and slavery abolitionist William Wilberforce. There’ll also be a deeply special guest slot from Scunthorpe-born folk legend Martin Simpson, with his deeply moving, intense performances.