Here’s what to check out Sunday at the Winnipeg Folk Fest
“I’m so tired and want to go home, but I don’t want this weekend to end.”
That sentiment pretty much sums up Sunday at the Winnipeg Folk Fest. Everyone’s tired and already basking in the afterglow, but something inside you compels you to eke out “one more song!”
Always a favourite (read: get there early to get a decent spot) is the traditional Sunday morning gospel workshop. And quite often it features a previously unknown artist that is at the festival solely to host this workshop, like Ruthie Foster, for example. This year it features Sunny War, Devon Gilfinnian, and Jerron “Blind Boy” Paxton, three American artists steeped in the gospel tradition who have already created their own buzz at the festival. It’s hosted by Andrina Turenne. A fine vocalist (and guitar player) in her own right, Turenne is best known as a founding member of Juno Award winning vocal group Chic Gamine. The workshop, titled We Shall Overcome, is on the Big Bluestem Stage at 11 a.m.
Young & Bold: Celebrating 20 years of YPP. The Young Performers Program has grown from a seedling to a forest since the days when it used a plywood sheet for a stage, and as they say, the proof is in the pudding. At 11 a.m. Sunday morning in Shady Grove, desert will be served. This workshop features five young up-and-coming performers who have caught the attention of music lovers, critics, and the industry across the nation: Jesse Matas, Roman Clarke, Two Crows For Comfort, Taylor Janzen, and Olivia Lunny. Of particular note, Janzen currently has a top ten hit on CBC Music, and Lunny won this season of The Launch on CTV.
Three Minute Rule is a workshop of short songs featuring a trio of acclaimed songwriters: Colter Wall, Courtney Marie Andrews, and Kathleen Edwards.
The incredible William Prince ends the daytime events with a concert at Bur Oak Stage at 4:30 p.m.
Americana, alt-country, no depression, roots, call it what you will, Sunday night mainstage has it all, starting with the un-retired Canadian alt-country queen Kathleen Edwards, who last graced the Folk Fest stage in 2008; followed by Sam Lewis who’s got some wicked Robert Cray like licks mixed in with the country; some straight ahead old school country from Saskatchewan’s Colter Wall; Rayland Baxter, who’s contemporary alt-country sound crosses over to mainstream now and again (“Yellow Eyes,” “Casanova”); and one of the hottest artists on the planet right now, grammy-winning Kacey Musgraves, who’s brand of country pop is Gaga to Twain’s Madonna.
But don’t leave yet. The festival ends with a stage full of artists and volunteers singing a trio of spirituals with the audience. It’s the perfect nightcap to the festival finale and will send chills up and down your spine.