2018 Deep Roots Festival Artists

Another year with an awesome blend of up-and-coming and tried-and-true performers on festival stages the last weekend of September. Scroll down to find a list of artists participating in this year’s Deep Roots Music Festival.

Check out this convenient one page summary outlining performer/performance details also with links to tickets in PDF format. The Ticket Pro pages also provide specifics.

Kim Barlow

Kim Barlow

Kim Barlow

Sunday Afternoon Main Stage, Sept. 30th, 1pm, Festival Theatre

A while back, world-travelling, multi-award-nominated touring and recording artist Kim Barlow got married and gave birth to twins, and joyously became a shadow of her former self. Since coming back to the Maritimes she has been musically re-ignited, with her band Ida Red and other collaborators.

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The Bombadils

The Bombadils

The Bombadils

Friday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 28th, 7pm, Festival Theatre

Nova Scotian maritimer Luke Fraser and Alberta prairie-girl Sarah Frank create beautiful harmonies and enchanting melodies by reconfiguring old folk songs, poetry, and original songs into a new folk framework.

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Ryan Cook

Ryan Cook

Ryan Cook

Saturday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 29th, 7pm, Festival Theatre

Mixing classic country music with modern satire, Ryan Cook has forged a sound between contemporary folk and dyed- in-the wool country. With nuances of pop and western swing, Ryan’s songbook reminiscences of the early hillbilly and folk pioneers but stays very much in the current landscape. On stage Ryan has toured as a solo performer opening for Country purists like Dwight Yoakam, Rosanne Cash, & Travis Tritt. His acoustic live show combines thumb- picking guitar styles, original folk & country ballads and vintage music from the 1940ʼs and 1950ʼs.

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Charlotte Cornfield

Charlotte Cornfield

Charlotte Cornfield

“Her songwriting is ravenous. Even here, in uneasy happiness, the 27-year-old sounds like she will wolf down her life as fast as she is able. The windfalls, the crises, the concerts, the chance encounters – she’ll sprint through them all, collecting burs. This is work in the tradition of Dylan or Townes Van Zandt,” – Sean Michaels, The Globe And Mail.

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Clary Croft

Clary Croft

Clary Croft

Kings County Museum, Kentville, Sept. 28th, 7pm

Clary is cited in The Encyclopaedia of Music in Canada for his contribution to Maritime folklore and his ongoing research into the traditional music of the Maritime provinces. His career encompasses television, stage, film, radio, recordings and publications.

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Jim Cuddy

Jim Cuddy

Jim Cuddy

Thursday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 27th, 7:30pm, University Hall, Acadia

Jim Cuddy has written many of the songs that have become indelible in the soundtrack of Canadian lives. With the release of his fourth solo album, Constellation, he adds ten songs to that extraordinary songbook and on this record, Jim continues to find new ways to balance personal reflection and plainspoken storytelling, remaining both intimate and accessible.

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Djugdjug Ensemble

Djugdjug Ensemble

Djugdjug Ensemble

Traditional West African songs, rhythms, arrangements, and at times dance, as well as other musical and theatrical ideas, make Djugdjug’s energetic and eclectic performances an intrinsic part of Deep Roots each year.

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Dennis Ellsworth

Dennis Ellsworth

Dennis Ellsworth

Friday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 28th, 7pm, Festival Theatre

In 2017, Dennis Ellsworth needed to make a new album. And it was an emergency. So, who better to call for assistance than Joel Plaskett, leader of The Emergency, to participate? The result is Ellsworth’s fifth solo LP, Things Change, a brilliant convergence of his irresistible power pop songwriting chops with Plaskett and co.’s trademark vintage guitar-driven sound.

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The Gilberts

The Gilberts

The Gilberts

Sunday Afternoon Main Stage, Sept. 30th, 1pm, Festival Theatre

It’s 2003.
Three kids, knee-high to a grasshopper, emigrate from the UK to Canada and settle with their music-loving parents in rural Nova Scotia. They are given three soprano ukuleles – Frieden gets the brown one, Reuben gets blue and Maisie – red. Strings buzz and zing and before long – there is music. Onward! Enter excellent teachers in the public-school music program who enthuse and encourage. Frieden picks the trumpet, Reuben the tenor sax, Maisie the alto sax and flute. Reuben discovers guitars and goes to his room – emerging some years later as a bodacious player.

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Donna Holmes

Donna Holmes

Donna Holmes

This Wolfville singer/songwriter hosts a weekly open mic (now in its 7th year); has performed and/or recorded back-up vocals for Greg Muttart, Up Dog, Heather Kelday, Mike Aube, and Andy Flinn; and is featured on “Let the Good News Ring – Christmas Songs from the Annapolis Valley” recorded with the Hupman Brothers in 2015. She has sung at the Halifax Jazz and Deep Roots Music Festivals, and she croons annually at the Moonlight-in-Paradise concert with the Annapolis Big Band.

Donna’s original music is folky and strong and sweet. Catch her performances, during this year’s Deep Roots, on Friday morning at the Wolfville Memorial Library, opening for Valdy,  and first thing Saturday morning at the Wolfville Farmers’ Market.

Jamie Junger

Jamie Junger

Jamie Junger

Fishin’ For Pickles

In 2005, Jamie became a father for the first time and began sharing his love of music with his daughter Sadie. Together they played with ideas and sounds and before long they were making music. Play time, silly ideas, and lots of love and laughter soon led to Fishin’ for Pickles, a collection of songs that will make you want to dance and/or sing along. (Nominated for 2 East Coast Music Awards).

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Mike T. Kerr

Mike T. Kerr

Mike T. Kerr

Saturday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 29th, 7pm, Festival Theatre
Sunday Afternoon Main Stage, Sept. 30th, 1pm, Festival Theatre

Mike Kerr is a wild flat-picker and ambitious country songwriter of Canadian heritage and American citizenship. During his time at Berklee College of Music in Boston and in over 10 years of performing, he’s lived his life through many historical and contemporary musical styles.

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The Kubasonics

The Kubasonics

The Kubasonics

Friday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 28th, 7pm, Festival Theatre
Friday Night Late Night Dance Party, 10:30pm, Wolfville Farmers’ Market

The Kubasonics are arguably Newfoundland’s finest Ukrainian band. Winners of three 2017 MusicNL Awards (Group of the Year, Folk/Roots Artist of the Year, The Overcast Fan’s Choice Entertainer of the Year), their trademark sound combines top-flight musicianship spiced with quirky humour, a dizzying array of exotic traditional instruments, and an eclectic high-energy stage show. They have appeared in 9 of Canada’s provinces and territories. In March 2017 they performed and recorded in Trinidad as one of only 6 acts selected from the Atlantic provinces for the Club One New Releases program. In summer 2017 they completed a three-week tour of Eastern Europe, with concerts in Ukraine, Poland, Slovakia and Romania.

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Leahy

Leahy

Leahy

Friday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 28th, 7pm, Festival Theatre

Over the course of their notable career, Canadian group Leahy has secured a place as one of the country’s most highly regarded progressive folk-roots bands. Their emergence on the Canadian music scene in the late 1990’s with their chart-topping instrumental single “Call to Dance”, introduced audiences to a new way of accessing a uniquely Canadian music genre. The “Leahy sound” – a combination of strong stride piano, unique bass guitar and drumming styles along with driving rhythm guitar – was the foundation from which wildly talented fiddle led instrumentals and vocals were launched to mainstream music listeners. Leahy would go on to win three Juno awards and receive countless accolades for their dynamic and powerful performances.

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Marilyn Manzer & Shannon Lynch

Marilyn Manzer

Marilyn Manzer

Marilyn Manzer has taught and performed music in Wolfville for 26 years and taught Kindermusik® for 11 years. This 2011 Valley Arts Award winner sings; plays piano and recorder; and has been music director for Women of Wolfville and school musicals. Many young people have been led into the lively world of music-appreciation through Marilyn’s music lessons and Kindermusik classes.

Shannon Lynch

Shannon Lynch

With Shannon Lynch, Marilyn is putting on a session designed for children under 7 years, called ‘Kids Play Music’ – a super fun session in which kids (and their adults) will sing, dance, and play rhythm instruments.

Maritime Marionettes

Maritime Marionettes

Maritime Marionettes

Maritime Marionettes, founded by partners and puppeteers Heather and Darryll Taylor, has been entertaining families in Canada and abroad since 1986. The Taylors bring traditional and original stories to life with exquisitely made and skillfully manipulated wooden marionettes. The company creates its productions from concept to finished product, including fashioning the marionettes and creating sets, props and costumes for every show.

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Scotty Marsters

Scotty Marsters

Scotty Marsters

Scotty Marsters is a pillar of the Wolfville music scene. When he’s not playing lead guitar or bass, or singing background vocals in numerous other Nova Scotian bands, Scotty steps into the role of songwriter and lead vocalist in the Scotty Marsters Band. Backed by an eclectic mix of classical, bluegrass, and country musicians, the band creates a multidimensional musical texture as captivating as Scotty’s heartfelt and genuine songs.

Playing solo or as part of a band, Scott has loads of musical talent to share.

Melgita’t Women

Melgita’t Women

Melgita’t Women

Smudging Ceremony –  September 27th, 6:15pm – in quad outside Convocation Hall

Mi’kmaq dances, chants, and songs were often accompanied by the drum which represents the heartbeat of the people. Melgita’t Women, a group of indigenous women, are exploring their heritage and culture together through drumming and singing. Rachel Whitney, Mika Francis, Kayla Mansfield-Brown, Penney Brown, and Penney’s daughter, Calla, also spend time, as a group and individually, discussing Indigenous history and practicing traditional crafts, as well as focusing on reconciliation. Some of the most poignant work they’ve done is performing for ceremonies held for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. Seeking their own roots, they conduct their work in the spirit of sharing traditions, while honouring and inviting ancestors.

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Zakary Miller

Zakary Miller

Zakary Miller

Saturday Night Late Night Dance Party, Sept. 29th, 10:30pm, Wolfville Farmers’ Market

With roots spread across the country, Zakary Miller’s songs reflect on a deeply Canadian identity. Both self loathing and loving, he’s crafted a sound he calls ‘Canadiana Swing’. Influences such as Stompin’ Tom, Bob Wills, Hank Williams and Rex Griffin shine through in his songwriting and sound, keeping a tradition of old time music alive while integrating his own introspective, silly outlook on life. Country, jazz and jugband music all intersect in a Zakary Miller set.

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David Newland

David Newland

David Newland

Sunday Afternoon Main Stage, Sept. 30th, 1pm, Festival Theatre

The Northwest Passage in Story and Song

The Northwest Passage in Story and Song is a musical and spoken-word performance of original songs inspired by the sights and sounds of the Canadian Arctic, its history and its contemporary realities.

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William Prince

William Prince

William Prince

Thursday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 27th, 7:30pm, Acadia University Hall

Recently signed to Glassnote Records, William Prince is a JUNO Award-winning singer-songwriter whose music is full of emotionally charged experiences that linger in memories. Raised on the Peguis First Nation of Manitoba, Canada, William has been honing his craft since the age of nine when he first picked up the guitar and piano. His biggest inspirations include Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson, Charley Pride, Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson and most significantly, his preacher and musician father.

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The Sadies

The Sadies

The Sadies

Friday Evening Windsor Show, Sept. 28th, 7:30pm, Memorial Imperial Performing Arts Centre, Windsor
Saturday Night Late Night Dance Party, 10:30pm, Wolfville Farmers’ Market

The essence of The Sadies’ story is in many ways summed up with the powerful image of the aurora borealis adorning the cover of their latest album, Northern Passages. Ever since the quartet, comprised of singer/guitarists Dallas and Travis Good, bassist Sean Dean and drummer Mike Belitsky, first arrived on the North American scene 20 years ago, their music has never been less than awe-inspiring, with no further embellishment necessary.

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Sarah Jane Scouten

Sarah Jane Scouten

Sarah Jane Scouten

Friday Evening Windsor Show, Sept. 28th, 7:30pm, Memorial Imperial Performing Arts Centre, Windsor

At age 5, Sarah Jane Scouten was sitting on the dining room table, singing “Lace and Pretty Flowers,” by Canadian country-folk musician, Willie P. Bennett. Hank Williams and Stan Rogers were her greatest inspirations, both a staple at Sunday morning pancake breakfast and afterward, while singing bluegrass and gospel music with her father on Bowen Island, BC. Her talent for performing came naturally, and as chance would have it, so emerged a knack for songwriting. Bringing us up to date, Sarah Jane Scouten is an internationally touring songwriter, loved by audiences across the Northern Hemisphere.

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Space Paddy Bog People

Space Paddy Bog People

Space Paddy Bog People

Denise Aspinall, Cathy Coates, Alister Thomson and Aran Silmeryn are four friends with a whimsical band name and a shared love for voyaging across the vast cosmos of traditional Celtic music.
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Siqiniup Qilauta (Sunsdrum)

Siqiniup Qilauta (Sunsdrum)

Siqiniup Qilauta (Sunsdrum)

Sunday Afternoon Main Stage, Sept. 30th, 1pm, Festival Theatre

There is a legend among the Inuit about the halo that appears around the sun. Known in some parts as siqiniup qilauta—roughly translated, “the sun’s drum”, it is a good sign; a symbol of good luck.

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Terra Spencer

Terra Spencer

Terra Spencer

Saturday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 29th, 7pm, Festival Theatre
Sunday Afternoon Main Stage, Sept. 30th, 1pm, Festival Theatre

Terra Spencer spent her youth in a basement in Summerville, Hants County playing piano and secretly strumming her granddad’s guitars along to Chet Atkins records. Since 2015 she has taken the odd break from her day jobs as a funeral director to tour the province as a vocalist, guitar slinger, and truck driver alongside a host of talented friends accompanying acclaimed folk country musician Ryan Cook.

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Tomato/Tomato

Tomato/Tomato

Tomato/Tomato

Saturday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 29th, 7pm, Festival Theatre

Hang onto your hats because this genre-bending power duo is ready to take you on a ride! Tomato/Tomato perform an eclectic mix of folk and country that will have you rolling down your windows and singing at the top of your lungs.

Their live show includes jaw dropping multitasking, dynamic guitar arrangements, and soaring vocal harmonies. Stitch these elements together with compelling, heartfelt songwriting and you have an unforgettable musical experience.

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Valdy

Valdy

Valdy

Saturday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 29th, 7pm, Festival Theatre

Valdy, born Valdemar Horsdal in Ottawa, Canada has been part of the fabric of Canadian pop and folk music for almost 40 years. A man with a thousand friends, from Newfoundland to Vancouver Island to Texas to New Zealand, he’s a singer, guitarist and songwriter who catches the small but telling moments that make up life.

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Vishtèn

Vishtèn

Vishtèn

Saturday Evening Main Stage, Sept. 29th, 7pm, Festival Theatre
Friday Night Late Night Dance Party, 10:30pm, Wolfville Farmers’ Market

For over a decade, the Acadian powerhouse trio Vishtèn has been recognized as an ambassador of Francophone culture around the world. The Canadian trio has dazzled audiences with its fiery blend of traditional French songs and original instrumentals that fuse Celtic and Acadian genres with modern rock sensibilities and indie-folk influences.

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Wee Giant Theatre

Wee Giant Theatre

Wee Giant Theatre

Festival goers love the enormous, whimsical puppets that make an appearance at the Fresh Beats Rhythm Parade and at various events during the Festival weekend. Monika Wildemann, Artistic Director of Wee Giant Theatre, specializes in puppets that energize spaces and create a carnival-like atmosphere. Dedicated to offering creative activities for youth, Wildemann creates puppets, props & costumes (all made from recycled materials) to help people celebrate living in peace and harmony, and show that it’s possible to create beauty without causing destruction.

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Winona Wilde

Winona Wilde

Winona Wilde

Sunday Afternoon Main Stage, Sept. 30th, 1pm, Festival Theatre

From the obscure underbelly of Canada’s dive bar circuit comes Winona Wilde, secret code name of Canadian singer-songwriter Noosa Al-Sarraj. A former lawyer/opera singer/dishwasher and huge fan of country music, Al-Sarraj one day absconded from all things real-life to dive head first into touring musicianhood, her true calling and lifelong torment.

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Michelle Willis

Michelle Willis

Michelle Willis

Prior to launching a solo career, British-born, Canadian-raised singer/songwriter Michelle Willis amassed an impressive résumé through a variety of collaborations and work as a session keyboardist and background singer. She graduated from Toronto’s Humber College jazz program, and began performing at weekly piano bars across the city. It wasn’t long before she expanded to become a hired gun for a variety of different acts like David Crosby, Becca Stevens, Laura Mvula, Snarky Puppy, Parachute Club and Zac Brown Band.

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