Day two of CityFolk began with opening the Aberdeen Pavillion as well as the Ravenlaw Stage to the public. The Aberdeen Pavillion featured a number of local artisans and breweries as well as two small stages, one of which was used to host intimate workshops and song circles featuring musicians playing at the festival. It’s great to see the mix of local talent brought together by a mututal love for supporting their community.
Over on the Ravenlaw stage, Scarlett Jane began the night. As a folk/pop duo with a bluegrass influence, Cindy Doire and Andrea Ramolo let their soulful voices ease the crowd into their set. One thing I love about Scarlett Jane is that they not only let you in on their tales of heartbreak, but they do it in French as well, with songs like “Mon Coeur”. Doire spoke about how this song was the first one that really brought them together as a band. It was exciting to hear a handful of tunes from their new album, including one written with Tom Wilson of Blackie & The Rodeo Kings, and Lee HARVeY OsMOND fame. Their slow and meaningful “Broken Open” which was about helping yourself mend a broken heart was definitely the standout song of the set.
After skyrocketing to viral fame in 2012 with their five person/one guitar Gotye cover, Walk Off The Earth has been wowing audiences at home via youtube and on stage with their high-energy, reggae-influenced sound. While the band is a quintet, they have a number of additional musicians accompany their live performances so that we get to hear the signature big and full sound that WOTE has been known for. Last year’s single “Red Hands” and the more recently popular “Rule The World” were played before nearing the end of their set with a medley of songs (including “Somebody That I Used To Know,” and Miley Cyrus’ “Wrecking Ball”) naturally played by the five of them on one guitar.
Lastly, The Avett Brothers closed out my night bringing exactly what you’d expect to see at any respectful folk festival. Featuring banjos, violins and upright bass, the folk rock band from North Carolina showed us that they were all about high-quality songwriting, musicianship and flawless harmonies. After playing a mix of up-tempo tunes and ballads alike, The Avett Brothers ended a stellar night with the emotionally infused “And I Love You.”
Photos courtesy of CityFolk Festival.