So, on Easter Monday, during the lockdown, I went to a music festival. The people behind the podcast Folk on Foot, which I subscribe to, had organised a “Front room festival” . I hadn’t been to a festival since the Reading festival in 1975, but on Monday, on a sunny Bank Holiday Monday, I settled down on the couch in front of our TV, to watch 15 top folk artists, most of whom had featured in an episode of the podcast, playing in their front rooms who all played sets of around 30 minutes.
The whole festival, over 7 hours long, can be viewed on Youtube
And there’s a podcast available of some ofthe highlights here.
There was a twitter hashtag for the event #frontroomfestival and it was fun to read the comments and look at the photos being posted there. Some people were really getting into the spirit of the thing, setting up their living rooms as if they were out in the middle of a field somewhere! (Absolute Radio were also running something similar, but with a different type of music! and were using the same hashtag)
And like any other music event, they even had a “merch tent” with t shirts and hoodies for sale.
No beer or food tents, mind. You had to sort that out for yourselves!
Folk on Foot was launched by the broadcaster and former BBC executive Matthew Bannister in August 2018. In each episode Matthew walks with a leading folk artist in the landscape that has inspired their music and they sing and play on location.