Last night I visited Bournemouth Folk Club for the first time and I was absolutely blown away.
Over the past couple of years, I’ve tried to make an effort to attend various folk clubs and open mic nights, both as a listener and a performer. The majority of the events I’ve attended share a similar running order; the floor is open for “folk” to perform a track or two to appreciative ears.
Bournemouth Folk club has a somewhat different stance on proceedings. Speaking to the organisers at the end of the evening, they prefer to not open the floor to just anyone, but select competent musicians well in advance to grace the centre stage. Encouraging new acts is still important to them, but maintaining a level of high quality performers (twice a week) is central to the core of their vision, and it’s a decision that has huge benefits…
The level of musicianship throughout the evening was absolutely staggering. Three acts graced the stage providing a diverse mix of offerings; from traditional folk arrangements through to spectacular and mesmerising guitar playing.
I only paid £6 on the door – a bargain price to watch a calibre of bands that I would have easily of paid 5x as much to see perform.
The bands in question were Bristol based “Holika”; a three piece featuring dual acoustic guitars that will unquestionably leave your jaw on the floor. To the point, I turned to my friend and muttered that I was from that moment on, giving up playing the guitar.
Holika were a tough act to follow, but headliners “Mike Dawes and Amy Turk” managed the unthinkable and upstaged Holika with a performance that would not be out of place on Jools Holland’s TV show. Mike and Amy were simply incredible; a guitar and harp duo, filling the room with the most beautiful, majestic sound.
I’m extremely fortunate to have such a quality live music venue on my doorstep. Full praise goes to the organiser, Paul Burke and his team – they are doing a great job in encouraging up and coming musical acts, and providing the listener with a consistently high standard of live music.
If you can’t get to Bournemouth on a Thursday or Sunday evening, why not grab some tickets to the Bournemouth Folk Festival. If last night’s offerings are anything to go by, it’s going to be immense.
Big thanks to Paul and the Bournemouth Folk Club team. For more information, check out the links below: