The 26th annual Bluegrass Festival at the Ulster American Folk-Park in Omagh begins this afternoon, with three days ahead of top entertainment from award-winning America, European and international and homegrown singers and instrumentalists.
The highly popular festival has received a boost with confirmation that it has been nominated for ‘Bluegrass Event of the Year’ by this year’s prestigious International Bluegrass Music Association Awards in the United States.
Headlining the festival will be award-winning and Grammy-nominated Kentucky singer-songwriter Dale Ann Bradley, while highly-rated Canadian bluegrass band Viper Central will also feature.
Dale Ann Bradley, at the Folk Park for the fourth time, has enjoyed success for 30 years with her soulful songs and album covers across the United States, both with her band and as a solo performer. In 2016, she received critical acclaim for her Grammy-nominated album ‘Pocket Full of Keys’. She headlines Saturday’s ‘Party in the Park,’ followed by a special Bluegrass gospel concert this Sunday in the appropriate Meeting House exhibit location. Dale Ann is also a special guest at Saturday’s ‘Mc Lecture’ series in Mellon Centre for Migration Studies.
Another returning act is the Estonian five-piece, Robirohi, who will also appear at the Sunday gospel concert. The event also features Cornish quintet Flats & Sharps and Scottish five-piece group The Dirty Beggars.
Sligo band Rackhouse Pilfer, who recently played at Glastonbury, and Roots Revival and Northern Exposure, from Northern Ireland, will feature. Festival organiser Richard Hurst said the diversity of talent at the festival this year is exhillerating, with 10,000 again expected.
“The festival is an excellent way to experience the sights, sounds and heritage of Scots-Irish emigration over several centuries ago, and how our culture has contributed to the American musical landscape for generations. Bluegrass is a genre suiting all types of music lovers,” said Richard enthusiastically,