Award winning Canadian trio The East Pointers, American folk supergroup Molsky’s Mountain Drifters and Rocky Mountain five-piece The Railsplitters make up a trifecta of world class folk acts performing across the nation as part of the Woodfordia Inc. summer tours.
The tour series kicked off at Mullum Music Festival over the weekend, as The East Pointers played the first of their 20 dates to a packed out, all-dancing crowd.
Back in Australia for a third consecutive year the trio will showcase tracks from their latest release What We Leave Behind, a record blurring the line between traditional and popular music, carving a new path for the popular band.
This weekend The East Pointers head to Queenscliff Music Festival for three performances before hitting the far reaches of the country including Melbourne, Hobart, Fremantle and Darwin, stopping for six shows at the Woodford Folk Festival.
It’s at the Woodford Folk Festival where they’ll join Molksy’s Mountain Drifters and The Railsplitters, with each band playing several shows across six days to folk-loving, foot-stomping fans at the largest gathering of artists and performers of its kind in Australia.
After making their first ever Woodford appearance, The Railsplitters – a high-energy bluegrass Americana band – will hit Aussie roads for the first time to embark on a nine-date tour of eastern Australia.
Taking their fusion of traditional Appalachian music merged with musical influences ranging from samba to hip-hop, The Railsplitters will travel to Brisbane, making their way down to Bellingen, Wauchope, Cygnet Music Festival in Tasmania, Hobart and Sheffield before wrapping up in Sydney.
Also starting an East Coast tour after their first ever Woodford Folk Festival appearance, Molsky’s Mountain Drifters will spend the first two weeks of the New Year playing another 10 shows around the country.
Well known in his native America, fiddle frontman Bruce Molsky is something of a folk legend, and brings with him Allison De Groot and Stash Wyslouch to play as a three-piece in Australia for the first time.
From Woodford the Mountain Drifters will head to Brisbane to play Lefty’s Music Hall, before stopping at the regional towns of Bellingen, Wauchope, Katoomba and Sheffield as well as Newcastle, Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne, rounding out the tour at the Cygnet Folk Festival in Tasmania.
Bruce Molsky says this will be his fourth time in Australia but is thrilled to be coming for the first time as a trio.
“The Mountain Drifters is the height of my musical life these days and I’m so excited I’ll be together with Allison and Stash in Australia for this tour,” he said.
“It’s a unique trio – we draw our main energy and inspiration from the old Appalachian masters, but Stash and Allison contribute a fresh and new approach to the old tunes and songs.”
Molsky says he is consistently amazed by Australian audiences and the experience of touring down under.
“The warmth and hospitality I’ve received from folks still sticks with me, and I’ve played concerts in places I never thought I’d ever get to visit.
“Music has always been all about community for me, and it’s easy to feel that strong human connection when playing for audiences in Australia.
“The thing that always gets me is just the exuberance and excitement at the festivals.”
Woodford Folk Festival Head of Programming Chloe Goodyear urges folk lovers far and wide not to miss these acts while they’re here.
“The artists we’re sending on the road are truly gifted,” she said.
“They play joyfully, they care about their music and the histories of their styles, they care about their audiences and they really want to give to them.
“These qualities are as remarkable as their talents – it’s an absolute honour to have them on the Woodford programme, and we want as many people to experience their talent as possible.
“If they’re playing near you – go see them.”
Details on tour dates and to buy tickets:
The East Pointers: www.eastpointers.ca
Molsky’s Mountain Drifters: www.mountaindrifters.com
The Railsplitters: www.therailsplitters.com