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The Big House (McGuinness Bar)

3:00 PM - Steafan & Saskia

Saskia from the UK, & Steafan from Ireland, moved to Canada in 2007 with 3 children and over 800 instruments! After 22 years of playing together, and many sessions under their belt for other people, Steafan & Saskia released their first duo album called “Moorchild”. Between them, Saskia & Steafan have played with thousands of artists both live and recorded, including Uriah Heep, Loreena Mckennit, Bjork, Depeche Mode, The Band of Hope (with Martin Carthy and Dave Swarbrick), SinÉ, The Afro-Celt Sound System, Oliver Schroer, David Newland (in his project Northbound Passage), and most recently Sultans of String, George Crotty, Shannon Linton and MEDUSA. They have been session musicians on TV shows which include Relic Hunter, Earth Final Conflict, Murdoch Mysteries, Copper, Cabinet of Curiosities (Del Torro) and Friends (the one with Ross’s Wedding). Together they worked on developing the Celtic music for the hit Broadway show “Come from Away”. Steafan is the author of bestselling books “The Bodhran Book” and “The Low Whistle Book”. With his other hat, Steafan is a TD and sound/lighting tech for theatres (and a very useful person to have around)

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The Speakeasy at Russell's Gin Emporium

5:00 PM - Nigel Wearne

Nigel Wearne, an artist from Gunditjmara country in southern Australia, skillfully blends blues, jazz, and Americana-noir in his music, reflecting the influences of Nick Cave, Tom Waits, and Rickie Lee Jones. As a guitarist and multi-instrumentalist, he delves into themes of human frailty, grace, and the cosmos with a style that's both peculiar and profound. Wearne's tours have taken him across Australia, New Zealand, the US, UK, and Canada, gracing stages at major festivals like the Cambridge Folk Festival, MerleFest, UK Americana Music Week, and others. His critically acclaimed second album, "Black Crow," received a 4-STAR review in Rolling Stone, was nominated for Best Country Album at the Music Victoria Awards, and debuted at #1 on the AMRAP Charts. Described by BEAT Magazine as having the narrative-fueled prose of Paul Kelly, Wearne is not just a singer-songwriter but also a luthier, poet, and gleaner, creating vivid lyrical imagery in his music.

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The Townhouse

7:00 PM - Amy McCarley

Amy McCarley, a talented Americana artist from Huntsville, AL, has made significant strides in the music industry with her third studio album "MECO," released in 2019. Developed with the help of Nashville Songwriter Hall of Famer Pat Alger and co-produced by Grammy-winner Kenny Vaughan and George Bradfute, "MECO" is a metaphor for McCarley's shift from NASA contractor to musician. The album, acclaimed for its emotional depth and McCarley's intense guitar style, features contributions from artists like Chris Scruggs, Marty Stuart, and Kenny Lovelace. Following her career pivot in 2013, McCarley has performed at major festivals and opened for famous acts, continuously garnering praise and expanding her influence in the Americana genre.

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4:00 PM- The Goddamsels

Based on their name alone, The Goddamsels aren’t your grandparents’ idea of country music. Formed out of the longstanding friendship between Alberta-based singer/songwriters Mallory Chipman and Frédrique “Freddi” MacDougall, The Goddamsels write songs with strong, empowering messages, blended with elements of folk, pop and traditional country, all tied together by their stunning, instinctive harmonies. It’s all fully displayed on their six-song debut EP, Wayward Daughter (Royalty Records 2022) produced by Juno Award nominee Scott Franchuk. Wayward Daughter explores classic country themes of hardship, heartache, and the power of togetherness, all delivered with a modern edge. The Goddamsels were nominated for the 2023 Roots Artist of the Year at the Country Music Alberta Awards, and recently represented Canada at the 2023 Folk Alliance International showcase in Kansas City, Missouri.

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The Vinegar Man

6:00 PM - Ernest Aines

A multi award-winning Americana styled folk singer-songwriter from Melbourne, Australia, Ernests soulful voice conveys songs that belie his age with lyrical expressionism that draw comparisons to the work of Ray Lamontagne, Bon Iver and Jeff Buckley. This year Ernest has played many Folk Alliance International Official Showcases at the yearly conference in Kansas City, sponsored by Sounds Australia for the official showcase and the Library of Congress Archive for a special tribute show. Armed with only a guitar and a stomp box he is a master of the stage, that audiences follow and continue to return for. He has since released three original singles from his highly-anticipated new album – a project five years in the making. The single ‘Rigged Games’ spoke volumes on behalf of Ernest’s unfiltered, authentic approach to the art-form, with live performance clips depicting compelling devotion to the heartache and desperation conveyed in his lyrics and signature voice. Along with the single ‘So Far’, the new music has amassed thousands of streams online, and Ernest’s second single ‘Yellowstone’ earned high-rotation at ABC Country.

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Mo Chara

8:00 PM - Maddie Storvold

After relocating to Edmonton in 2016, Storvold quickly became a notable figure in the city's arts scene, capturing the raw essence of her music in her debut LP, "The Old Brag Of My Heart," recorded in unconventional locations. The album, released in 2017, received critical acclaim and topped folk/roots radio charts in Canada. Her follow-up album, "Freedom, Books, Flowers & the Moon," was launched in 2018 at the Telus World of Science planetarium, again to a full house. In February 2019, Storvold released "Don’t Say You Love Me," a ballad written and produced by Bryan Adams, which not only hit #1 on the country charts within hours but also surpassed artists P!nk and Lady Gaga on the overall charts. Known for her engaging stage presence and humor-infused performances, Storvold is a festival favorite, having graced numerous Canadian events. Her music, both tough and tender, effectively combines storytelling with emotional resonance, establishing her as an emerging voice in Canadian folk music and a new generational icon.

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