I'm off to the annual Folk Alliance International conference today. It's a crazy, mad few days (Wednesday through Saturday) listening to lots of live music, attending conference sessions, seeing old friends, and making new ones. Each day there are conference sessions during the day, private showcases in hotel rooms in the afternoon, followed by the official showcases from dinner time until 10:30 p.m., and then more private showcases until 2:30 or 3:00 in the morning. Rinse, repeat each day!
Close to 3000 people attend: musicians showing off their work, venues of all sizes from house concerts like ours to legendary venues like Club Passim to festivals like the Kerrville Folk Festival, Planet Bluegrass, Winnipeg Folk Festival, Edmonton Folk Festival and Walnut Valley Festival, to name only a few, folk DJs, record labels, agents and managers, and other music industry people.
It's absolutely a blast, energizing and exhausting at the same time. I'll come back with new artists I want to book for a show and maybe even some bookings. There's a little video taste of the conference, shot at last years conference, at the bottom of this post.
You can get an idea of the scale of the conference by scrolling through the official showcases - there are almost 200 of them. We have had the privilege of hosting four of this year's official showcase artists: Abbie Gardner, Ana Egge, Dayna Kurtz, and Missy Raines and will be hosting a fifth, Ordinary Elephant in July 2018.
If you go listen to any of the artists online and are interested in seeing them in a future house concert, leave a comment below or send me an email at [email protected] and let me know. I'll try to add them to my list of people to see at the conference. No guarantees but I'll at least let you know what I thought about them and whether we are likely to book them.