Jean-Guy Roy and Rob Mitchell of Federal Lights (Nicholas Friesen)
The 28th annual Brandon Folk Music and Art Festival kicks off Friday, July 20, at the Keystone Centre.
This year's lineup has a ridiculous amount of talent, from legendary
performers to indie darlings that are sure to become some of your new
Representing Manitoba you have the likes of The Crooked Brothers, Nathan, The Magnificent Sevens and The Young Pixels (and many more), while the festival is studded with some prominent performers like Jane Siberry (whose been touring this year with k.d. lang) and Judy Collins, who is in the fifth decade of her career!
Amongst these acts are a couple choice bands who we feel are truly worth checking out. Here are our five top choices for the festival.
Kinne Star: Star is not the easiest of artists to define. She's a poet, actor and hip hop and folk musician who also writes and produces for other artists. She has toured all over the world while her live shows continue to evolve. Brandon is lucky to have her.
Great Lake Swimmers: Fronted by singer/songwriter Tony Dekker, Ontario's Great Lake Swimmers have simply become one of Canada's finest live acts. Dekker's lyrics relay beautiful images in your head while his charmingly paced melodies will stay with you long after the show. There is good reason the Swimmers are headlining opening night.
Wax Mannequin: Hamilton's Wax Mannequin is unique to say the least. Armed with a Spanish guitar, a low growl of a voice and some darn fine lyrics (and suspenders), this guy can put on a show. A relentless tourer, he will be sure to please.
Geoff Berner: Vancouver's Geoff Berner has made playing the accordion seem like the coolest thing going. This guy takes the sound of traditional eastern European Jewish music and infuses it with humour and some gloriously entertaining showmanship. Hear Berner live and you'll want to dance, dance and dance some more.
Federal Lights: It's almost criminal how many stellar acts come out of Winnipeg. The Federal Lights is a band composed of some of this city's finest with members from Quinzy and The Attics playing along with husband and wife duo Jean-Guy and Jodi Roy. Their methodical brand of alt-rock demands to be heard live.