Friday, August 06, 2004

Cambridge Folk Festival

We spent last weekend at the Cambridge Folk Festival and had a glorious time. The weather was gorgeous, tho’ that was pretty much a given I’ve only known one wet Cambridge and that was the year of the Golden Jubilee when they had to move the dates but this is the UK so you can’t make any assumptions LOL
So we headed down on Thursday, got the tent up, went into Cambridge for a pizza then headed up to the festival site. Tom Robinson was on when we got there and as far as I could tell due to some really iffy sound was in good form. The PA picked up for ‘2-4-6-8 Motorway’ at least. After a quick wonder round the site to check out what was there we headed back to stage 2 to catch Thea Gilmore. She’s someone that get’s played a lot on several of my favourite radio show’s but none of her stuff had ever stuck but she was stunning live, performed the best version of ‘Bad Moon Rising’ I’ve ever heard.

Friday morning we went for our traditional cooked breakfast at the market café, then it was time to mooch round Cambridge and indulge in some shopping J and then we went for a punt on the river. We went up to the festival site at teatime and settled down in front of stage 1 to start, caught the Dhol Foundation, some serious Bangra drumming and then Loudon Wainright III who was on serious form! I hit the Caribbean stall for tea and tried their Sweet Potato & Chickpea curry, gorgeous. After Louden it was over to stage 2 to catch the Oyster Band. As a special they’d gone back to their roots as a ceilidh band even though I didn’t get to dance the ceilidh seemed to have much more umph than previous years.
Saturday we went for the other traditional breakfast at Clowns then popped to the market to pick up a new sunhat as it was promising to be a very hot day. We also picked up a picnic lunch which we ate back at the campsite before heading to main site. We parked ourselves back in front of Stage 1 as I particularly wanted to catch Josh Ritter, who didn’t disappoint, I’m going to have to invest in his album soon. Then it was onto the Levellers, playing acoustic but with all their usual passion so I had a good boogie! Then it was onto Jim Moray, the current rising star of British folk, good but nothing outstanding. Next up was the Old Crowe Medicine Band (standing in for the Dixie Humingbirds whose plane was delayed) playing high octane bluegrass. After their set I took a break to go for my back massage, as usual I got told off for the state of the knots in my shoulders! Then it was back to catch Gillian Welch, I’ve wanted to see her live for years & she was stunning.
Sunday it was off for another Clowns breakfast, then back to head off to the festival to park ourselves in front of stage 1 for the afternoon. First up was Show of Hands, a stunning set as ever, then it was Keb’ Mo’, nice and chilled blues for a baking hot afternoon. Then in a complete change of pace it was Asleep at the Wheel, who converted Cambridge into Texas (they reckoned it was definitely hot enough LOL) with some full throttle Western Swing, pretty much the whole crowd had a good boogie at some point during the set! Then we pretty much switched over to stage 2 for the evening, we where pretty much chilled out by that stage so we weren’t paying too much attention to the music. We did take a wander over to the club tent to catch Johnny Dickinson who did a knockout spot, then left via the Dixie Humingbirds.
We managed a first this year tho’ neither of us bought anything at the CD stall!! Though I’ve told Dave that a large internet order placed later still counts LOL. I managed to get a little bit of stitching in and finished the Whitley Julip Fobs and started their replacement in my rotation Shepherds Bush’s Cotswold Sampler. I also (and this is the major achievement for me) managed not to get sunburnt!

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