The weather for the sixth Maverick Festival (5-7 July 2013) at Easton Farm Park in Suffolk and the inaugural Americana Music Assocation UK conference could not have been any better this year: pure sunshine all weekend long. It was my first time at the festival and I was especially excited to see many of the overseas Americana acts. And sure enough, with pretty much every new band that got on one of the four stages I kept adding more names to my must-sign-up-for their-newsletter list. I also loved the location. Everyone was really relaxed, (well-behaved) dogs were allowed and the playground plus various farm animals kept kids and grown-up kids happy. Food and drink were reasonably priced with some veggie options on offer, even though carnivores definitely had a lot more choice.
Back to the main reason that made Maverick so amazing: the music. While we caught a couple of sets at the Peacock Cafe (barn) and the large outdoor stage on the Green (perfect for sunworshippers, a bit too hot for me), we mainly switched between the atmospheric Barn (second largest venue) and the Moonshine Bar (smallest one and my fav). The good thing was that if you liked a particular genre, a certain bluegrass, blues or singer-songwriter sound, you could pick out those acts and see them once or twice over the weekend learning the songs in the process. Alternatively, you could sample lots of different musical styles in one weekend and find some new favourites.
Here are a few that particularly impressed me (again), but do check out the full festival line-up as all the bands are worth giving them a listen!
Hatful of Rain: The Exit Song
The Carrivick Sisters: Garden Girl
Danni Nicholls: Time
Danny George Wilson: Follow the River
Tony and Grace: Holy Hand Grenade
Andrew Duhon: It’s Gonna Take a Little Rain
Stephen Kellogg: Crosses
Kristin Diable: Time Will Wait
Dennis Ellsworth: Electric Stars
The Good Lovelies: Best I Know
Leeroy Stagger: A Hundred Million Reasons
Ruth Moody: Trouble & Woe
As Leeroy Stagger pointed out during his Saturday night’s set, it’s good to play in front of ‘real music fans’. This pretty much sums it all up. Everyone on the farm that weekend was there to listen to some kick-ass music. No matter what style you liked best, the bands were giving their all, we met plenty of friendly Americana-loving folks and the festival was intimate enough to have chats with some of the musicians over a coffee. So better put next year’s Maverick dates into your festival calendar right now, you won’t want to miss it!
Zzz…zzz…listening to all this amazing music can be so exhausting!!