FolkFest Update – May 5

We’re abuzz at the response to last week’s announcement of the 2016 festival lineup. Traffic to the website has been HUGE, and the response on social media has been really exciting to see. This tells us that this festival is a place where musical adventurers and world-curious seekers of new sounds and fresh experiences find a home. It’s where appreciation for the familiar and much-loved meets the delicious anticipation for the not-yet-known.

Today is the Mexican celebration of Cinco de Mayo – marking the Mexican army’s victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla – so to honour their special national day, let’s meet the Mexican Institute of Sound.

Classic Mexican music samples from the 1920s to the 1960s mixed with vocal samples and modern scratches and beats – this forms the boundary-busting basis of the sound of Instituto Mexicano del Sonido. The brainchild of Mexico City-based DJ and producer Camilo Lara, the Instituto is at the forefront of a growing Mexican electronica movement fusing folk and more traditional music with modern sounds. Think a pastiche of dub, cha-cha, cumbia, beats, electronica and more. A moment of “wow!” is in your future!

May 8 is the day to celebrate moms, so let’s check in with The Wainwright Sisters as they sing the songs they learned from theirs.

Martha Wainwright and Lucy Wainwright Roche didn’t grow up together, though they shared the same dad – musician Loudon Wainwright III. There is that DNA connection then, but their true bond is music. Both their mothers would sing them lullabies – Kate McGarrigle to Martha, and Suzzy Roche to Lucy – and to honour them, now 30 years later, Martha and Lucy are singing many of those same songs. Some are penned by their mothers and father, and some are songs that shaped their childhoods, made famous by folks like Woody Guthrie and Jimmie Rogers. Their debut album, Songs In the Dark, captures them on disc, and we’ll get to hear them live at the festival. Why not bring your own mom along and listen!
Watch them perform Lullaby for a Doll by Martha’s Mom, Kate McGarrigle.

And here’s the original version with the McGarrigle sisters and a young Martha. 

Stream the full album on CBC Music and hear lots of mom content in this BBC interview.