Womindra @ taste 8 great world music, folk, comedy & poetry acts was held Sat. Oct. 2nd.
Mick Conway & Robbie Long - Frencham Smith - Merri-May Gill & Fiona Claus - Valanga & Andrea Khoza & Ian Blake - Genni Kane Jon Wilby and Gavan Wickes - Blue the shearer - Nerida Cuddy - 25 member Bathurst Multi cultural choir.
We had a late line up change but lost nothing in the exercise - Genni Kane Jon Wilby and Gavan Wickes - replaced Rob Shannon & Veren Gregorov.
We had some sound issues so a bit late starting but when we did -Nerida Cuddy Was in great form she sang songs about the abundance of a country op-shop - to the bitterness of grief; from the hopes & fears of motherhood to rants against materialism; Nerida's songs celebrate the goodness of life and the value of the real. With warm vocals, rich guitar and some catchy crowd-chorus songs. Nerida is the founder of Folk@Canowindra. she has been singing and songwriting for over 20 years. “She's a composer & musician with not only an ear for music, but a social conscience and a sense of humour.” (ABC Central West) Blue The Shearer of ABC radio fame recently performed at Folk @ Canowindra to a packed audience - it was great to have him back he had the crowd in stitches - He is the scourge of politicians whom he dissects with merciless satire, he comments upon the foibles of our lifestyle and no subject is too trivial to escape the cutting edge of the incisive Blue mind. (click here to read Blue's poem of the week). What a treat the Bathurst Multi-cultural Choir performed next conducted by Tracy Callinan it was a great change of pace from satire to sensitive renditions of beautiful music from around the world.
The second bracket commence with: Genni Kane Jon Wilby and Gavan Wickes. They'd stepped in following Veren Gregorov's cancellation - between them Genni Kane, Jon Wilby and Gavan Wickes have about 100 years of playing music. They showed it, was a great way to open the middle section of the program. Sitting around one snowy afternoon, they discovered that they must also know about a million songs between them. They didn't play all of them but what they played was fantastic. Gen, Jon and Gav draw widely on their combined musical backgrounds. With their collective roots in bluegrass, country, blues and folk music, AND drawing from rock, pop, punk and R&B, they believe anything is possible on acoustic instruments. In the 1980’s Genni was the voice of the multi-award winning Flying Emus, while Gavan cut his teeth on rock and punk in Far North Queensland. Jon has played bluegrass banjo forever, until rediscovering his love of guitars, and later the mandolin. Merri-May Gill has rated 5 star reviews and sell-out seasons at the Edinburgh Fringe. She has shared the bill with the likes of Michelle shocked, Joan Armatrading and Janis Ian. Merri-May was supported by Fiona Claus who had great success with her debut solo album“Bijoux” in 2008 Fi’s debut single “Come Home” saw her film clip on RAGE and rave reviews around Australia,.. including SINGLE OF THE WEEK in BEAT (Melb) and RAVE (Bris) magazines... Going back to comedy was a master stroke the audience cracked up at Merri-May's suggestion that she was turning Moree into the Paris of the north - her assistant Janice (Fiona Claus) a trainee seconded from the Moree Arts Council brought out her box promptly tripped over a Mic lead scattering the contents over the stage- a great 5 minutes of un scripted comedy followed which had them rolling in the aisles....
Frencham Smith Liz Frencham and Fred Smith were joined byRobbie Long. I'd not seen this line up before - it took my breath away I have seen Fred & Liz often but throw in Robbie's slide guitar and what is already great just gets bigger. Many will know Fred has an impressive range of overseas achievements. Included amongst these is: Winner- 2006 Ploughshares Songwriting Comp, Phoenixville PA -Selected Official Showcase Artist at Folk Alliance Montreal 2005 - US CD Ballads & Barsongs #9 on International Folk DJ Charts Jan 07 - Australian CD release Bagarap Empire - won the Screensound Australia National Folk Recording Award. Liz Frencham does most of the vocal duties for Frencham-Smith delivering songs with a sensitivity and lion-hearted courage that has made her one of the most sought-after performers in Australia. Her assured touch on the double bass brings to the duo real warmth and solidity.
Embracing her double bass like a lover, Liz invites you along a journey through a luminous emotional landscape, reassuring you with a warm, generous voice and a smile which has become her trademark.
Valanga Khoza with wife Andrea supported by Ian Blake came on with a high energy set full of percussion huge harmonies and the dance floor came into play. Valanga grew up in a traditional setting surrounded by lively singing, drumming and dancing. Valanga began working with singer and songwriter Andrea Khoza 12 years ago. She is a founding member of the highly acclaimed a cappella group "AKASA". They’re joined by Ian Blake - Ian Blake's Spirit of Place CD, was released by ABC music in 1996. His production and sound engineering skills have earned him a Gold Disc and an ARIA nomination. They were all inspirational
The break that followed this act was probably not our best idea having been bombarded by music for 6 hours we lost some our audience. Those that left early missed out.
Mic Conway & Robbie Long. Mic Conway and Robbie long were at there vintage best (despite satirical comments about getting the graveyard shift), the legendary "Captain Matchbox Whoopee Band" numbers (I reckon Mic's Canary really would have had circles under his eyes the next day I did) teaming up with one of Australia's finest guitarists and driest wits - Robbie Long, has been a great idea for Mic the synergy is great. The hilarious version of Tom Lehrer's "Masochism Tango". Stripped back, irreverent and shameless, was a treat.
All in all Womindra was a great success.