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Review: Cambridge Festival

GUEST,folkandroots (guest) 02 Aug 08 - 10:08 AM
Tangledwood 03 Aug 08 - 03:04 AM
evansakes 03 Aug 08 - 06:20 AM
treewind 03 Aug 08 - 10:28 AM
Tangledwood 03 Aug 08 - 04:29 PM
Richard Bridge 03 Aug 08 - 04:52 PM
George Papavgeris 03 Aug 08 - 05:26 PM
GUEST,Frug 03 Aug 08 - 05:42 PM
GUEST 03 Aug 08 - 07:40 PM
theleveller 04 Aug 08 - 03:29 AM
Tangledwood 04 Aug 08 - 02:53 PM
CharleyR 04 Aug 08 - 07:11 PM
Liz the Squeak 04 Aug 08 - 07:44 PM
GUEST,Declan on hols 05 Aug 08 - 06:09 AM
Richard from Liverpool 29 Jul 11 - 05:46 PM
melodeonboy 30 Jul 11 - 12:14 PM
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Subject: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: GUEST,folkandroots (guest)
Date: 02 Aug 08 - 10:08 AM

Apologies for the plug but if anyone is interested we have a blog-type report and pictures from this years Cambridge at Folk and Roots, this weekend


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: Tangledwood
Date: 03 Aug 08 - 03:04 AM

Your title to this thread omits the word "folk". It's a pity the organisers didn't do that. I wouldn't have wasted my money and time coming here.
There are plenty of folk at the festival but folk music is obviously low priority. After two days at the event I am yet to actually see a performer through the ocean of standing audience. Yes, it is possible to hear them - over the loud converstions, family picnics, drinking parties, squeeking balloons, even a jam session (American Pie) on the grass outside Stage 1.

There were some useful tips in the mandolin workshop.

Cambridge and Warwick are opposite ends of the festival spectrum. I know which one I would go to for a second time!


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: evansakes
Date: 03 Aug 08 - 06:20 AM

Tangledwood, the list of artists appearing at Cambridge is published well in advance of tickets going on sale. If the line-up doesn't match your definition of "folk" why decide to go there in the first place?

It's a ticket that otherwise would've ended up in the hands of someone who would have apprciated it...

As for the noise (a typical festival crowd enjoying themselves in the usual ways) why not move to a different vantage point where this is not a problem? Easy to do at Cambridge....there are plenty of people listening closely if you move nearer the stage.

Also, you don't say who conducted the mandolin workshop but if (as I suspect) it was being led by Tim O'Brien it's hardly surprising you'd pick up a tip or two!!


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: treewind
Date: 03 Aug 08 - 10:28 AM

There has been a Cambridge Festival going on for the last week or two, which is NOT the Folk Festival. As usual, every year.

Yes, I do understand why you could drop "folk" from the name... I'm just being pedantic.

Anahata


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: Tangledwood
Date: 03 Aug 08 - 04:29 PM

"Tangledwood, the list of artists appearing at Cambridge is published well in advance of tickets going on sale. If the line-up doesn't match your definition of "folk" why decide to go there in the first place?"

Apart from the international performers most of the names meant nothing to me. I could only rely on the festival's title for a guide. International flights and accommodation had to be booked well in advance of details being placed on the website. It was only after buying the program on Friday that I found players influences to be hiphop, punk, electronica, reggae and so on.

"why not move to a different vantage point where this is not a problem? Easy to do at Cambridge"

I don't know where you found any? My legs and back wouldn't last out standing through an entire concert.

Yes Tim O'Brien was the gentleman. Excellent value!


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 03 Aug 08 - 04:52 PM

You flew to England to go to Cambridge?

Oh, once it would have been worthwhile! Lovely setting. Wonderful ambience. The unofficial stage the other side of the children's play area. The booked artists making it a point of honour to drop into the club tent pretty much daily. The open air showers near the rear entrance, over the stream. Wandering the Cherryhinton campsite late at night, and a fresh song session coming into hearing every 50yards or so, some with really famous names at. The guests camping among the punters. A few international artists, to give perspective and breadth - but all of them folk artists in their own cultures. Arrive on Wednesday, leave on Monday afternoon.

That must have ended about the 15th festival!


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 03 Aug 08 - 05:26 PM

Nah, the 18th was still good - the last one I went to. Have the beer mugs to remember it by, and also memories of sunshine, choruses, harmonies, the McCalmans, Loudon Wainwright III, the Aussie Bushwackers, June Tabor, Allan Taylor with his Cajun Moon trio, sessions, singarounds... Good days. But then I was so much younger then too.


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: GUEST,Frug
Date: 03 Aug 08 - 05:42 PM

Yawwnnnnnnnnn!!

Ya know........if there was nothing to complain about then it would be necessary to create something to complain about !! Tangledwood there has been enough expression about the nature of Cambridge Festival on this forum for a number of years.....Mr Bridge makes a point of a certain order, however there ain't been no secret about the diversity that now surrounds Cambridge.....not to my taste a lot of it either, however the organisers seem to hit some kind of niche market selling out (whoops freudian or what?) every year. I wouldn't go to Cambridge unless say the Doc or someone of a similar stature was on, however I respect the rights of others to enjoy an array of music...........Who's to say that a few punks or rappers didn't catch and enjoy a trad session?? I'm going to Broadstairs this year and then to the V Festival (working) after that Shrewsbury with a few others coming up as well............now that pretty diverse...........Thing is I choose my spots and gigs and place myself accordingly.....perhaps a bit more research, planning and organisation might help huh??


Frank


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Aug 08 - 07:40 PM

"Apart from the international performers most of the names meant nothing to me. I could only rely on the festival's title for a guide. International flights and accommodation had to be booked well in advance of details being placed on the website. It was only after buying the program on Friday that I found players influences to be hiphop, punk, electronica, reggae and so on."

Sure Cambridges line up is more eclectic than some (which indeed the Festival is up front about), but as you mentioned Friday, does your description about the lack of folk include Chris Wood, Eliza C, Mr McGoldrick, The Cherryholmes to think of obvious examples ?


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: theleveller
Date: 04 Aug 08 - 03:29 AM

"Apart from the international performers most of the names meant nothing to me."

Tangledwood, perhaps if you'd checked out their websites, myspace etc. you'd have been better informed. I'm at a loss to know what you expected a festival to be like. I agree that it can be annoying if people are shouting and screaming around you when there's an artist you want to listen to but you didn't like the artists anywasy, so why complain? Did you expect everyone to sit in silence all day; to have an allotted space with a comfy seat? It's a festival, for f**k's sake - people milling around, having a good time with some great music and a brilliant atmosphere. I couldn't make it this year and I'm really jealous of those who did.

Strikes me you're just not a festival person. Perhaps you should stick to concerts in comfortable venues with artists you know and leave the festival scene to those who love it.


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: Tangledwood
Date: 04 Aug 08 - 02:53 PM

"Strikes me you're just not a festival person. Perhaps you should stick to concerts in comfortable venues with artists you know and leave the festival scene to those who love it."

For fifteen years I've been attending festivals including being in their squads of volunteers. One of them runs over six days with twenty venues operating 9am to midnight each day. I have already mentioned that I loved Warwick.

It was unwise of me to post here on an evening when my gruntlement had well and truly departed. Probably best to let it drop now. I have no trips to UK planned next year so I won't be denying anybody else a ticket.


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: CharleyR
Date: 04 Aug 08 - 07:11 PM

Well, I really enjoyed it - apart from getting rained on and there's nothing anyone can do about that! I know it's not the same as other events which are called folk festivals, but whatever label you give to it personally I like it for what it is and no doubt I'll be going again in the future.

I did notice a surprising amount of what I call 'normal people' in the audience, by which I guess I mean conventional people you wouldn't expect to see that many of at a folk festival, and the musical instrument stalls tend to get the guitars on display rather than the melodeons like you get at more traditional festivals. As someone already mentioned, the noisy families/people with enough stuff to set up camp for a fortnight/people reading the Sunday papers (why??) can be avoided if you go nearer the front of the stage, which isn't usually difficult if there's only one or two of you and you don't take up a lot of space.

Personal highlights were The Levellers, The Chair (high-energy Scottish music), Ross Ainslie and Jarlath Henderson (Scottish and Irish pipers/whistle players) and Altan.


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 04 Aug 08 - 07:44 PM

A friend who went really enjoyed Eliza Carthy and says she's looking very pregnant.... any confirmation or news?

LTS


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: GUEST,Declan on hols
Date: 05 Aug 08 - 06:09 AM

I really enjoyed Cambridge as well. If you go out not to have a good time, it's usually easy to find things to complain about.

And yes, either Eliza is heavily pregnant or she needs to get down to weightwatchers in a hurry.


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: Richard from Liverpool
Date: 29 Jul 11 - 05:46 PM

While living "darn south" I have the misfortune of living around the corner from this thing.

I can hear it right now. And I'd just like to say, what a bloody awful racket! Grumble grumble.


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Subject: RE: Review: Cambridge Festival
From: melodeonboy
Date: 30 Jul 11 - 12:14 PM

"...why not move to a different vantage point where this is not a problem? Easy to do at Cambridge....there are plenty of people listening closely if you move nearer the stage."

Unless they've done something about the chronic overcrowding and are letting far fewer people in than the last time I went, I can't see how getting nearer the stage is "easy to do"! Coming from the back of stage one, I calculate it might involve four or five incidents of treading on someone, one or two beers spilt or knocked over, a crushed infant or two, a sandal in someone's sandwich and a very acute sense of balance to get to the front at all, and when you get there you might not be appreciated by the group that have "camped" there for the last three hours to get a half-decent view of their favourite artist without your standing in front of them! And if you want to take your beer with you, you'll only have half a pint left by the time you get there!


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