The Slocan Ramblers are among the headliners at the inaugural Cowichan Valley Bluegrass Festival, which has moved to the Laketown Ranch after 16 successful years as the Sooke Bluegrass Festival. Photo by Jen Squires

Expanded bluegrass festival pitches its tent at Laketown Ranch

Former Sooke Bluegrass Festival outgrew previous venue after 16 successful years, organizer says

In the world of bluegrass they are household names – Claire Lynch, The Slocan Ramblers, the Lonely Heartstring Band.

But to those not familiar with niche subculture of bluegrass and Appalachian old-time music?

“I call the best music you’ve never heard,” says Bob Remington, co-artistic director of the Cowichan Valley Bluegrass Festival, happening June 14-16 at Laketown Ranch Music Park near Lake Cowichan.

The festival, which moves to Laketown after 16 successful years in Sooke, features some of the best acoustic musicians in North America including Lynch, a three-time Grammy nominee who, according to Dolly Parton, has “one of the sweetest, purest and best lead voices in the music business today.”

Programming a festival made up entirely of music that doesn’t get played on the radio might seem like a challenge, but so dedicated are its fans that the festival decided to move to Laketown after selling out campsites at Sooke months in advance.

Laketown offers acres of camping, which Remington says is integral to the bluegrass experience.

“Bluegrass and old-time festivals are unique. Fans camp out all weekend and take part in organized and impromptu jam sessions. With three chords and a guitar, you can make a lot of friends.”

ALSO READ: Snoop Dogg, Incubus, Sublime with Rome, Smash Mouth head to Vancouver Island festival

The festival features an Appalachian old-time square dance under a big top circus tent Saturday night as well top local and regional bands like The Sweet Lowdown and Nomad Jones, and free workshops with headliners.

For tickets and information visit cowichanbluegrass.com.



editor@mondaymag.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Victoria’s Oktoberfest brings out the Bavarian in all of us

Stein and Dine at Victoria Public Market celebrates German food, beverages, culture on Oct. 19

Restaurant Review: Authentic Mexican molé hits the spot

Restaurante la Tortilla Mexicana’s hearty, spicy sauce works well over enchiladas, writes Allan Reid

REVIEW: Mullins’ Weaksauce hits the mark, like a good hockey pass

UVic Fine Arts alumni and frequent CBC writer’s biographical storytelling show here through Oct. 19

Two local authors walk away with Victoria Book Prize

Kathy Page and Aidan Cassie each walked away with a literary award

Inspirational evening celebrating the power of the arts

The Victoria Guitar Society hosts Syrian Encounter – An Evening with Orontes Quartet, Oct. 18

Fashion Fridays: How to pose in photos

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra launches new season

First up: Celebrating the Concerto on Oct. 27

Trudeau to appear on Jessi Cruickshank’s Facebook Watch show ‘New Mom, Who Dis?’

Federal Liberal leader to do sit-down interview with Canadian media personality on Wednesday

‘Joker’ laughs its way to October box office record

Warner Bros. said “Joker” grossed an estimated $93.5 million in ticket sales from 4,374 screens in North America

Ginger Baker, Cream’s volatile drummer, dies at 80

Baker wielded blues power and jazz technique to help break open popular music in the 1960s

‘Interesting mixture of emotions’: Scott Moir reflects on final tour with Tessa Virtue

Multiple Olympic ice dance gold medallists skating through B.C. during the Rock the Rink tour

It’s onward and upward for Victoria gelato artisan

After winning Gelato Festival gold, Stefano Mosi will compete at North American finals in 2020

Most Read