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Page last updated at 13:43 GMT, Wednesday, 7 July 2010 14:43 UK
Three days of folk music in Sark
Jamming in the field
Clem of the Barley Dogs jammed with The John Wesley Stone

The population of Sark more than doubled over the weekend of 2-4 July 2010 as the first ever Sark Folk Festival took place.

The brainchild of fiddle player Simon Harvey, who was inspired by a trip to the Shetland Islands, the festival took the committee a year to put together.

Simon said the organisers had been "astounded by the number of people" at the festival.

He added that the island's residents had also been very supportive.

Phil Capper

Guernsey acoustic and folk music veteran Phil Capper opened the festival with a solo set on the Vermerette stage.

He said: "It was quite an historic moment, I was really proud to be on there doing it."

Phil used to help organise the Guernsey Folk Festival, which included a 1993 performance from The Dubliners on the Crown Pier in St Peter Port, and said: "That's why I was particularly pleased to see a new folk festival cropping up in the Channel Islands."

He said that people seemed more open to acoustic music styles now than they had been in years past because people had begun to realise: "Folk music is really accessible, anyone can do it."

The John Wesley Stone

Americana infused skiffle country band The John Wesley Stone brought something different to the festival Friday evening with their rock 'n' roll infused folk sound.

Drummer, Lynchburg, said: "There's such a wide range of folk... we can get away with playing a bit of rockabilly and a bit of skiffle... it's all roots music."

He added: "Turning up here you'd think the festival had been going on for years."

The drummer's enthusiasm was shared by the other members of the band. Tinshack said: "It's brilliant, good atmosphere, good beer, good people and good sound... I just hope it happens again next year."

The Barley Dogs

As a band made up of members of the organising committee The Barley Dogs, and their guest drummer/bass player James Le Huray, had something extra invested in their performance on the Saturday afternoon at the festival.

Stand up bass and banjo player Clem Brouard said "I absolutely loved it, it was rocking", of their set while guitarist Mick Le Huray added: "It was the best gig I've played."

James said "I never anticipated a response as positive of this", to both the festival and the band's performance.

Fiddle player Simon Harvey added: "We've had a really positive response from the locals."

Big Sheep

The one truly local band on the bill were Sark folk trio Big Sheep, who were joined for their set by violinist Jess Nash.

Guitarist Tom said it was "nerve wracking but good in the end", as bass player Wez pointed out it had been the biggest crowd Big Sheep had ever played to.

Being based in Sark the trio play on an irregular and informal basis as gigs are not that easy to come by. Singer, guitarist and violinist, Dave said: "We play three or four times during the summer at events and occasionally down the pub."

Big Sheep thought the festival was a good thing for the island as it was "something a bit different" and would bring more bands to Sark.


D3uce opened the third and final day of the festival in their stripped down acoustic two piece form.

Violinist Becky said: "It went well, baring in mind the morning hour!"

Though the band are not a strictly folk band guitarist Eamon O'Neill, who travelled from Ireland for the show, said: "It's nice to mix it up - though it's a folk festival we did our normal set, rock songs in a 'folk' way."

The duo said they had both grown up with folk music with Eamon's father being a fan of traditional Irish songs and Becky playing Ceildhs in her youth. But Becky added: "Folk is music of the people, so it can mean anything you like as far as I'm concerned."

In pictures: Folk music finds a home in Sark
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In pictures: Folk Festival fills up on day two
05 Jul 10 |  BBC Introducing
In pictures: Relaxed end to Sark Folk Festival
05 Jul 10 |  BBC Introducing
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