Legendary musician and songwriter Tom Robinson brings his band to Manchester Folk Festival for an incendiary live performance. Tom Robinson’s success crosses the generations – his strong melodies and fierce lyrics as relevant and vital now as in the UK punk era.
First known in the 1970s as an LGBT activist and musician with The Tom Robinson Band (TRB), their Top 5 debut release 2-4-6-8 Motorway became one of the landmark singles of the time. Now a full-time broadcaster with BBC Radio 6 Music as well as a solo artist, Tom has recently played festivals from Green Man to Glastonbury. His 2015 solo album featured guests such as Billy Bragg, John Grant and Ian McKellen.
To mark the 40th anniversary of 2-4-6-8 Motorway in October 2017, Tom pays tribute to the original TRB by performing his entire Power In The Darkness album with a classic four piece line-up featuring Faithless drummer Andy Treacey, Richard Ashcroft guitarist Adam Phillips and keyboard virtuoso Jim Simmons, plus Tom himself on bass and lead vocals.
True power inspires awe, and Irish Mythen packs a lot of it – lyrical, musical, and personal – into a small frame. Her guitar-led contemporary folk is dominated by dynamic vocal prowess. Irish is a performing powerhouse with magnetic stage presence. A globetrotting troubadour, this Irish-born, contemporary Canadian folk artist has been amassing accolades and achievements across several continents over the years. Her live show is an impressive tour-de-force that finds Irish combining catchy anthems with traditional tunes borrowed from her proud Celtic heritage. All are woven together with a signature blend of edgy humour, heartfelt storytelling and charisma.
Irish Mythen joins us at Manchester Folk Festival as one of three special guest artists from Prince Edward Island, Canada. Every year, one country or region is offered an exclusive international partnership with English Folk Expo. So in this festival of English music, you’ll still be able to make some international discoveries. The Eastern maritime provinces of Canada have rich folk inheritance from their Celtic, French and native Mi’kmaq roots, and we’re delighted to welcome this exchange of traditions and stories. We think you’ll love it too.
Phillip Henry and Hannah Martin
Phillip Henry, one of the UK’s finest slide guitarists and harmonica players, and Hannah Martin, Devonian fiddle-singer Hannah, have a powerful musical connection. On stage they perform original alt-folk songs of lament and tunes of hope, with virtuosity, intensity and charisma. The alchemy of Hannah’s enchanting voice, fiddle and banjo blended with Phillip on dobro, harmonica and lap steel is mesmerising. Together they create a wholly distinctive world sound, reflecting their wide travels and their long journey together. Phillip and Hannah won 2014 BBC Radio 2 Folk Award for Best Duo.
This event is part of Manchester Folk Festival – a celebration of English folk in all its forms, from indie to traditional, familiar names alongside exciting new voices. From 19-22 October in and around HOME, the whole festival takes place in one area of Manchester over one weekend. The Festival presents an incredible music line-up, as well as craft workshops, film, a proper pub singaround, artists in conversation and a relaxed Festival Hub where you can watch the world go by. Friendly, inclusive and full of opportunities for discovery, it will have the spirit of a festival in a field, in the heart of the city.