Well, that was a bit special, wasn't it?!

Last Friday, we were proud to welcome the BBC Radio 2 Folk Singer of the Year Bella Hardy to Downend Folk Club... and she showed us exactly why she scooped the prestigious award back in February.

Bella delivered a mixture of traditional songs and her own compositions, relying just on two fiddles and her stunning voice.

More than 120 people - easily a sell-out - were present to hear Bella's mesmerising performance, and also to enjoy the fabulous Great Western Brewing Company beers...

We're already looking forward to the next event, Ange Hardy in June. Tickets are on sale NOW!

In the meantime, our very own Alan Cole popped his photographer hat on for the evening to capture Bella's gig, and you can view the gallery here. Apologies for the rogues gallery towards the end! Please note that clicking this link will take you to Alan's Music Festival Photos website. Have a look around, it's a great site!

See you in June!


Photograph by Alan Cole

Used with permission.

This Friday (16 May) we are proud to welcome the reigning BBC Radio 2 Folk Singer of the Year Bella Hardy.

Bella joins us as part of the solo leg of her "Thirty for 30" tour at Frenchay Village Hall for a sold-out gig.

Doors open at 7.30pm for an 8.00pm start, and there will be a bar (selling fantastic bottled Great Western Brewing Co. real ales), a raffle (with great prizes including a signed CD and a year's subscription to The Living Tradition magazine) and a shop (selling great CDs, magazines and merchandise).

If you booked online, you need to print out the PayPal receipt that you received by email; this will act as your ticket.

We're excited, and we hope you are too, if you're one of the lucky ones that got a ticket!



What a line-up we’ve got in store for our Autumn/Winter programme at Downend Folk Club!

The September-December programme is headlined by a Christmas-time gig from our very own Patron, Jim Moray. But that’s not all! In September, we welcome fast-rising stars India Electric Co., a duo made up of Cole Stacey and Joseph O’Keefe, who have been earning rave-reviews lately.

In October, we will host The Jennifer Crook Trio. Jennifer spent much of her early life in Downend, and indeed, many of her family are still based in the area. The trio comprises Jennifer, cellist Bethany Porter and guitarist/accordionist Mike Cosgrave.

And the programme is completed with a gig in November from Jess Vincent, who was recently shortlisted for the Isambard Folk Award at the Bristol Folk Festival. Jess will be joined on stage by multi-instrumentalist Marcel Rose.

Scroll down for more info about each gig. Oh, and we haven’t forgotten August. We’re working on something a bit different for our Summer event… watch this space!

Ticket prices, venues and full details for all gigs will be announced in due course. We’ll also let you know when tickets for each event go on sale.





Friday 19th September 2014

Fresh from touring with the likes of Midge Ure and Hazel O'Connor alongside headline concerts across Europe, Cole Stacey & Joseph O’Keefe are now India Electric Co.

They've recently received airplay on the likes of BBC Radio 3, BBC 6 Music, played the likes of Glastonbury Festival, Larmer Tree Festival, Le Bus Palladium and become notable exponents in the field brewing coffee.

Sometimes folk, sometimes not.

"Just so fresh…one of the more interesting collaborations of the year." - BBC 6 Music (Tom Robinson).

"Fresh, original and inventive. [On Hire] is one of the best albums from young songwriters I’ve heard all year." - Steve Knightley (Show Of Hands).



Friday 17th October 2014

“Amazing…the kind of thing that gives modern folk a good name” - Zeitgeist

Following a “very impressive” (Pledge Music) crowd-funding campaign, Jennifer Crook’s third solo album will be released by Proper in June 2014. Based at Real World Studios, Jennifer will be working with Leon Hunt and with Stephen W Tayler (Suzanne Vega, Kate Bush, Stevie Nicks, Peter Gabriel) who says:

 “Jennifer is a rare talent, creating wonderful atmospheric, poetic songs with gorgeous accompaniment – superb instrumentalists and instruments – especially her own harp and of course featuring her beautiful voice. She even manages to make the banjo cool! These songs are like short stories, photographs, movies… truly captivating and magical.”

In a career that has led her from the BBC Young Tradition Award to touring with Snow Patrol, Jennifer has earned a reputation for outstanding harp playing as well as her singing and songwriting skills. Produced in Glasgow by Boo Hewerdine, and featuring guests like Eddi Reader and Darrell Scott, Jennifer’s last album earned her excellent reviews, national airplay and a live session with the legendary Bob Harris on BBC Radio 2.

Jennifer’s new record features her live trio: cellist Bethany Porter (Eliza Carthy Band, Newton Faulkner) and guitarist and accordionist, Mike Cosgrave (Jackie Oates, Jackie Leven), with a collection of songs that have become popular at Jennifer’s concerts as well as some brand new material inspired by their travels.

This is beautiful, rootsy, acoustic folk that draws on Jennifer’s Americana influences but remains undeniably English in it’s story-telling. With the combination of great musicianship, and wonderful songs that inspire a genuine emotional connection, the new album promises to be something very special indeed.



Friday 21st November 2014

"Jess Vincent is a name that should become as familiar on the lips as the wind is upon the trees” says Fatea Records.

Jess is a captivating performer from Wiltshire, who delivers her extraordinary songs with subtle arrangements and a maturity that belies her youth, yet allows her vulnerability to shine through.

Accompanying herself on guitar, baritone uke and shruti box, her unique and gorgeous voice has been compared to many, such as Kate Bush, Iris Dement and Maria Muldaur - but is so distinctive that it could only be Jess Vincent.

Jess will be joined by the talented multi instrumentalist Marcel Rose, who accompanies Jess, interpreting her songs with a rare sensitivity.   Jess was shortlisted for Fatea Best Track of 2013 and Bristol Folk Festivals Isambard Folk Award 2014.



Friday 19th December 2014

Jim Moray is one of the most consistently inventive musicians working in English traditional music today. Winner of five BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, after five ground-breaking albums he now finds himself at the forefront of a new folk revival in the UK, and hailed as a pivotal influence by a new generation of folk musicians.

In 2013 he celebrated both 10 years since his landmark debut album Sweet England and the success of his 2012 career best Skulk. Now he brings material from his forthcoming album of traditional ballads out on the road for an evening of storytelling music at its best.

And, of course, he’s Patron of Downend Folk Club!