2023 LINE-UP

To be announced…
You can browse through some of our 2022 artists below

Canadian quartet The Slocan Ramblers blend impressive bluegrass virtuosity with a fresh contemporary appeal, emerging from Toronto’s lively roots music scene a decade ago. Winners of the International Bluegrass Music Association’s 2020 Band Momentum Award, the Slocan Ramblers have also conquered the bluegrass heartlands of the USA. They’ve toured extensively across North America and Europe, building a reputation as a barnstorming live band. Their latest album Queen City Jubilee won Traditional Album of the Year at the 2020 Canadian Folk Music Awards, and earned a prestigious 2019 JUNO Award nomination. The band’s performances include a mix of fine original songs and energetic bluegrass standards, with classic three part vocal harmonies. With a fun and entertaining stage presence complementing their impeccable musicianship on banjo, mandolin, acoustic guitar and double bass, the Slocan Ramblers have become firm favourites at festivals and venues around the world.

Easily one of the most entertaining young bluegrass acts on the scene today and recently having signed with Mountain Fever Records, Seth Mulder & Midnight Run were formed in early 2015. Comprising young like-minded musicians, all of whom are graduates of various college music programs, the band has spent the last 5-plus years honing its high-energy act of blazin’ solos, tight harmonies, and questionable jokes, mostly as long-standing resident performers at the Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Tied to the rich traditions of bluegrass music yet willing to stretch boundaries, they aim to deliver a ‘fresh approach to the High Lonesome sound’; this is solid ‘old-style’ bluegrass that appeals to the purist. But it’s more than that. This is also bluegrass for the soon-to-be converted, an act that ensures the uninitiated sit up, take note, tap their feet, and call for an encore. As the Midnight Run official bio states, ‘it is about connecting with the audience and leaving them with a memory that will last a lifetime’ – Conservatory.

Vivian Leva & Riley Calcagno are based in North Carolina and perform a mesmerising blend of old time Americana, folk and bluegrass. This acclaimed young duo combines fine original songs with old time fiddle tunes, with striking harmony vocals and accomplished musicianship. Their debut album was released in 2021, produced by Grammy-winning Cajun musician Joel Savoy and named in many best-of-year lists. Vivian grew up in Virginia with folk musician parents and began writing songs and performing at the age of nine. Her debut solo album was released in 2018 and Rolling Stone named her one of the top ten country artists to watch. Riley has also been immersed in traditional music from an early age. Originally from Seattle, he’s an exceptional multi-instrumentalist, playing fiddle, guitar, banjo and mandolin. Riley co-founded celebrated old time stringband The Onlies when he was just eight years old, and later studied at Oberlin College & Conservatory.

Virtuoso banjo player and fiddler Aaron Jonah Lewis has been elbow-deep in traditional American music since their first lessons at the age of five with Kentucky native Robert Oppelt. Their concerts take audiences on a journey through the back roads of American old time and folk music, with detours through ragtime and early jazz. Aaron is passionate about sharing early fingerstyle banjo music. They bring light to the fact that classic banjo was the most popular form of music a hundred years ago, though today it’s almost entirely forgotten. They are “trying to keep (classic banjo) alive and spread it around, as it’s a delightful style that brings joy and connects us to the depth of our shared American history.”

Tethered by an interest in American roots and bluegrass music rarely found in Scotland, The Fountaineers are a Glasgow based quartet, a home renowned for its fierce traditional music scene. Callum MT (mandolin), Jeri Foreman (fiddle), Michael Wright (guitar/vocals) and Rob Hart (banjo) are creating music that adheres to traditions, fosters creativity, and blends the progressive intent found in shared musical heroes such as Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs, Tony Rice and Allison Krauss and Union Station. They released a debut single covering music by Mandolin Orange, competed in the final round of the Hands Up For Trad - Battle of the Folk Bands 2021, and most recently have been selected as an International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Official Showcase Band for the 2021 IBMA World of Bluegrass Conference in Raleigh, NC.

Long Way Home is a roots music duo, currently based in Co. Cork, Ireland. While drawing from experience in bluegrass and American-roots music, their diverse repertoire ranges from recognizable favorites to original songs that are based on their own real-life experiences.

Owen Schinkel (The Netherlands) and Kylie Kay Anderson (Utah, USA) met in Johnson City, Tennessee while studying in the Bluegrass, Old-Time, and Country Music Studies program at East Tennessee State University. Through their experiences, they both gained a deep interest in the international bluegrass music scene. After completing their studies, Owen and Kylie decided to relocate to Co. Cork, Ireland to learn, experience bluegrass music abroad, and to become inspired by new music genres. The Long Way Home project is the result of their inspiration and experiences.

Cup O’Joe is a progressive bluegrass and folk band founded and based in Northern Ireland by three siblings, Tabitha, Benjamin and Reuben Agnew, and later joined by Tabitha’s husband David Benedict. Their unique mix of original compositions and re-imagined traditional songs paired with their lively performances has given them a growing presence in the acoustic music scene surrounding Ireland, The United Kingdom, Mainland Europe, and beyond. Their quartet lineup features tight sibling harmonies, tasteful arrangements, compelling originals and virtuosic solos. Tabitha Benedict brings her unique style of banjo playing and delicate vocals to the group, which were both recognised by the IBMA (International Bluegrass Music Association). She holds the 2020 Momentum Instrumentalist of the Year Award. Cup O’Joe have made their name known among the folk and bluegrass circuit internationally, with appearances at Celtic Connections, IBMA in North Carolina, and the Omagh Bluegrass Festival in their neighbouring county. In 2015 the band were runners up in the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Awards, as well as being the first youth band to showcase at IBMA in Raleigh, North Carolina. They have not only made a name for themselves on the touring circuit, but have also appeared in several BBC television documentaries. In January 2020 they released In The Parting which features nine original songs and one reimagined traditional song from their native Ulster.

"They make a truly gorgeous sound and play with such intuition as only a family can do.” Cara Dillon “Imagine what these young artists will accomplish before they’re done”. - Bluegrass Today

Rachel McCarthy, Jackie Rainey and Katie Richardson 

Premier of a new special collaborative performance in celebration of our 30th birthday from musicians and songwriters Rachel McCarthy, Katie Richardson and Jackie Rainey! They will play songs from some of the Bluegrass, Folk and Americana artists who have inspired them over the years in their own diverse creative journeys. This show will be packed full of three part harmonies and beautiful covers from a diverse range of artists such as Emmylou Harris, Gillian Welsh, The Milk Carton Kids, Gram Parsons, CSNY, First Aid Kit, The Staves and many more.

Katie Richardson is a musician, songwriter, composer, music producer and facilitator who currently makes her own music under the name Hex Hue. For several years she was a member of Choice nominated ‘Pleasure Beach’ with whom she toured the UK and Ireland. Under several different guises, she has worked and collaborated with musicians such as Foy Vance and Duke Special as well as supporting artists like Van Morrison, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, Jesca Hoop, Bell X1, All Saints and many more. As a composer/songwriter Katie has worked with many Theatre and film companies across Ireland. In 2018 she starred in and worked as on-stage musical director in the production of Good Vibrations in The Lyric Theatre. Her work in film has included a score for 'The Death of a Projectionist' by Oscar nominated and Bafta award winning Out of Orbit Films.

Rachel McCarthy is an incredible singer-songwriter from Bangor. As well as being a member of NI music prize nominated ‘The Darkling Air’ Rachel was also a founding member of Farriers and has toured and performed with artists such as Foy Vance, Juliet Turner and Duke Special. Rachel is currently working on a third album release with the darkling air as well as curating music and stories for a historical project called Bangor's Ghost - which will hopefully see it's forth performance in Summer 2022.

As well as being a talented songwriter who regularly travels to Nashville TN to co-write, Belfast based musician Jackie Rainey is also an International touring artist who has been the opening act for artists such Paul Brady, Eliza Gilkyson, Gretchen Peters and many more. An in-demand session musician Jackie was a touring member of Sinead O'Connor's live band providing rhythm guitar and backing vocals across Europe and America 2019-2020. In 2012 Jackie toured the west coast of Australia as opening act for Hat Fitz and Cara and has performed in prestigious venues such as The Ulster Hall when she provided backing vocals for a sold out show with Davy Watson and The Ulster Orchestra.

Hailed by Hotpress Magazine as ‘One of Northern Ireland’s most exciting bands to emerge in recent times’, No Oil Paintings are a vivacious, dynamic, alternative-folk band from Belfast. Using typical folk instrumentation and four-part harmonies they produce music that’s a little wilder than what is often associated with the genre. The band switch and share vocal leads, each member playing to their own strengths and bringing their own style to the songs they shepherd. Expect to hear everything from swampy blues rock to straight-up country waltzes.

Anthony Toner & The Doone Brothers

A unique pairing of songwriting and playing talent - Anthony Toner is regarded as one of Northern Ireland's finest songwriters and guitarists, famed for his insightful lyrics and his top-notch acoustic fingerstyle approach to folk and blues material. Here he teams up for a one-off festival performance with The Doone Brothers, who give HIS material a sweet bluegrass twist, while he adds some fine flatpicking and slide to THEIR songs. Formed 'in utero' in 1993, The Doone Brothers (Sean, banjo and guitar and James, double bass) are a two-piece folk band from Belfast who play a mixture of original material, combining James' dark lyricism and Sean's bluegrass influences. Along the way. expect some fine songs from each - and a selection of folk songs from shared favourites like John Prine, Townes Van Zandt and Blaze Foley.

Broken String Band

For around 20 years, the Broken String Band have been purveying great bluegrass, roots and string band music. Local musicians Michael Ashe (banjo and vocals), Ivan Muirhead (guitar and vocals), Philip Steele (bass and vocals), John Fitzpatrick (fiddle) and Adrian Muirhead (mandolin) all play with energy, enthusiasm and feeling. The band have played in many major festivals, in Belfast and beyond, from private parties to the 'One Show '. Their eclectic repertoire from Doc Watson to Aerosmith keeps the ears interested and the feet tapping, you just don't know what's coming next!

Listen to our Bluegrass Omagh 2022 Spotify playlist here.