2020 mini fest

Yorkshire Americana & Bluegrass Day

Saturday 30th May 2020

Marsden Mechanics, Marsden, Huddersfield

** UPDATE as at 28th March 2020 ** EVENT POSTPONED

We have had to postpone the event due to the ongoing Covid-19 virus crisis. Please bear with us during this devastating time for live music and grassroots musicians. Obviously our top priority is the health and personal safety of everyone in our live music community. Because we were successful in our Arts Council grant funding application, we need to navigate this carefully to ensure we receive approval for our re-scheduled event. If you already bought tickets, please note our ticket provider Wegottickets will be in touch soon about refunds. If you need a refund, they will arrange that for you (please bear in mind they are VERY busy at the moment) – otherwise please consider the option to retain your tickets for the new date, once announced. We will be in touch with a further update as soon as possible. Thanks for your support.

Our very first Yorkshire Americana & Bluegrass Day will feature performances by four outstanding bluegrass and Americana bands from the USA and UK – scroll down for more info and video clips! We’re also planning participatory workshops in harmony singing, Appalachian step dance and mandolin (and possibly more!). The event will run 2pm – 11pm approx. Please check back for full timings and details over the coming weeks. We want to acknowledge the generous support of the Arts Council who have granted us funding to help make this event a success.

Advance tickets £30. (£20 for under 16s). Tickets are on sale now online (note 10% booking fee online) and paper tickets are also available at Marsden Library inside the Mechanics building.

EVENT POSTPONED DUE TO COVID-19 CRISIS.

Americana Day A4 poster with Arts Council

More about the bands:

AJ Lee & Blue Summit – sensational contemporary bluegrass & Americana from California

AJ Lee & Blue Summit made a big impression on their debut tour of the UK last summer, with glowing reviews and packed out out shows (including a memorable sold out gig in Meltham). The band brings a contemporary approach to bluegrass and Americana, combining virtuoso instrumental work (on mandolin, acoustic guitars, fiddle and double bass) with soaring vocals. A powerful singer, talented mandolinist and gifted songwriter, bandleader AJ Lee has been making waves on the acoustic scene for many years, performing with family band The Tuttles (alongside celebrated guitar ace Molly Tuttle) since she was just ten years old! Blue Summit’s star has been rising, and 2019 saw their debut album release and international touring debut. They were also official showcase performers at the IBMA (International Bluegrass) festival in North Carolina last September, and AJ Lee won the prestigious 2019 IBMA Vocalist Momentum Award.

Jaywalkers – outstanding musicianship and songwriting from one of the UK’s finest folk-Americana bands

Cheshire trio Jaywalkers create music that’s innovative and exhilarating but still deeply rooted in tradition. They have cemented their place as one of the most exciting, talented and entertaining roots bands in the UK, since reaching the finals of the BBC Young Folk Awards back in 2008. Now with four albums and many years of touring under their belts, Jaywalkers draw on multiple influences, from folk and bluegrass to Western Swing and jazz. With one of the greatest voices around in Jay Bradberry (who’s also a fantastic fiddle player!), Jaywalkers are simply a class act. Mandolin ace Mike Giverin is also a gifted songwriter and double bassist Lucille Williams is recognised as one of the best on the UK acoustic scene. We absolutely love this incredible trio!

Zoe & Cloyd – a superbly performed blend of acoustic Americana, folk and bluegrass from North Carolina

Zoe & Cloyd is a massively talented duo made up of Natalya Zoe Weinstein and John Cloyd Miller. From a lineage of klezmer and jazz musicians, renowned fiddler and singer Natalya trained classically in her home state of Massachusetts before moving south in 2004. John is a twelfth generation North Carolinian and award-winning songwriter, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist (guitar, mandolin, banjo). Zoe & Cloyd’s third album I Am Your Neighbor was released to warm reviews in autumn 2019 and the duo has performed at venues and festivals across the USA, delighting audiences of all ages with their soaring harmonies, outstanding musicianship and heartfelt songwriting. We were knocked out when we saw Zoe & Cloyd perform in the USA back in 2018, and we’re delighted to be hosting them on their debut UK tour!


Tilter Wheel – barnstorming British bluegrass trio

Blending bluegrass, Western Swing, old style country and more, Tilter Wheel is a hugely entertaining band featuring several highly respected UK musicians. Local banjo maestro Jonny Hulme is one of the best 5-string players in the country, a phenomenal bluegrass banjoist also known for his Irish trad playing with The House Devils and Ólta. Simon Brady (mandolin, lead vocals & guitar) is an exceptional singer and musician and an in-demand session player, who has performed with the Swing Commanders among many other bands. Brilliant double bass player Ray Walmesley makes up the trio format that will be opening the show for us at our mini-fest. Tilter Wheel performed at our very first Meltham concert back in 2016 and they absolutely brought the house down!

Marsden is a scenic village nestled in the Pennine hills 8 miles west of Huddersfield. It has excellent transport links, with direct trains to Huddersfield (10 minutes) and Manchester (40 minutes). Our venue Marsden Mechanics is in the heart of this vibrant village. There will be a real ale bar at the event and there are numerous pubs, cafes and restaurants close at hand.

Advance tickets £30. (£20 for under 16s). Tickets are on sale now online (see link) – please note 10% booking fee online. Paper tickets are also available now at Marsden Library inside the Mechanics building.

A word about our funding and sponsors

We want to acknowledge the generous support of the Arts Council who have awarded us some funding from their Project Grants which aim to support and develop grassroots live music. Huge thanks to them for supporting live music and community events like this one. We are also grateful for sponsorship contributions from the British Bluegrass Music Association and from Eagle Music Shop. We still need to sell lots of tickets to make the books balance, so please support us by booking your tickets in advance! The BBMA exists to support and promote bluegrass in the UK, supporting UK festivals, promoting UK bluegrass bands and providing a tour support service for touring artists from the USA and Canada. Check out the BBMA website and please consider joining the association if you’d like to help the music to flourish in the UK. Eagle Music Shop specialises in traditional stringed instruments and accessories, learning materials and much more! With a bricks-and-mortar music store in Armitage Bridge, Huddersfield – only about 7 miles from our Marsden event – Eagle Music also has a successful online and mail order business. It’s well known among bluegrass and folk musicians and enthusiasts and has been the leading Deering banjo dealership in the world for well over a decade! Check out the Eagle Music Shop website and if you’re coming to our event, do consider a visit to the shop itself – it’s a treasure trove of gorgeous instruments and much more!

Ticket link – Yorkshire Americana & Bluegrass Day