An amazing lineup of incredible musicians for this year’s Folk At The Fringe.
The Orange Circus
Whilst having a hand in roots, rock and gospel music, and updating traditional songs taken from The Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia -The Orange Circus Band produces original music that has a wholly unique, fresh sound. You can expect wild playing, beautiful harmonies and boundless energy guaranteed to raise the roof and warm the hearts.
“I first heard The Orange Circus Band via Roger Daltrey who sent me an email saying, ‘I think you’ll love them, Bob’. He was absolutely right – Rooted in Bluegrass and UK Folk Music, they’re a wonderful bridge across the Atlantic. ” – Whispering Bob Harris, OBE BBC 2 Country
Female-fronted folk with a bite. Accidentally on a quest to write as many songs about the sea as possible.
”I started writing and performing originals at 12 inspired by artists like Florence + the Machine, Imelda May and The Clash. After moving to Cardiff for uni I formed Beard to finally hear my songs in a full band setting.”
Since forming in mid-2022, the band has played sold-out gigs at Clwb ifor Bach, Tiny Rebel and played for BBC 6’s Immersed Festival. Beard is Back.
Dark And Twisties
Swansea super group Dark and Twisties are; Sarah Birch, Kate Ronconi, Sarah Passmore, Danny Kilbride and Huw Rees, a collective made up of members of Lost Tuesday Society, Rag Foundation, and Sarah and the Creepy Uncles.
In this new venture, they bring stories old and new, woven into strange and beautiful songs with their glorious harmonies and skilful musicianship. They recently wowed Swansea Arena’s Coffeeshop Sessions and are hotly tipped to be stars of this year’s Swansea Fringe.
Rona Mac (she/her) is a trailblazer for expression within music. She is a queer Singer-Songwriter bringing us lo-fi alt-Indie with Folk and Americana influences, crafted in her caravan home-studio in west Wales. Her music comes raw and unfiltered, aching with the kind of nostalgia that comes with rural, rugged places. She weaves satisfying guitar-driven riffs with hooky melodies and she shows the ability in her sophisticated lyricism to reach out to people and make them feel. Her strive for depth and grit evokes the singer-songwriter movement of late 90’s as well as contemporaries such as SOAK, Marika Hackman and Holly Humberstone.
Despite music composition and performance being prominent in her life from a very young age, Rona Mac’s project as a solo musician began in 2020 and she has since released a DIY Debut Album ‘Sheelah’ and EP ‘Shades Of Ham’, exhibiting her captivating talent with music production. Her personal highlights of 2022 are plays on primetime BBCRadio1, BBC6Music and Radio Wales, performing at 6music Fest and Boomtown, and getting featured in Clash magazine. Funded by PRS foundation Women Make Music and Help Musicians UK, she will be releasing a new album in 2023, as well as collaborations with artists Dan Bettridge, Minas and Wil Owen.
Forged in slate and small-town angst in the foothills of Snowdonia by bearded brothers, Liam and Siôn Rickard, Lo-fi Jones weave tales of love and loss in an ever changing landscape. Here, lo-fi synths meet high-rise harmonica, rhythmic guitar and vocal harmony recall windswept valleys, sweaty dance floors, and saxophone kissed city streets. With lyrics in both Welsh and English (and French) and their heady mix of folk, tragi-comic pop and indi-Gymreig, Lo-fi Jones like to take audiences on a journey, where moments of gentleness are juxtoposed with surrealism, anarchy, and a party atmosphere.
Some of Lo-fi Jones’s highlights so far were Cân i Gymru 2023, Fire In The Mountain Festival (2022), the Mari Lwyd cellebrations in Dinas Mawddwy, Gwyl Y Pethau Bychain (festival of the small things) (2022), performing on Noson Lawn on S4C (2021), collaborating with Catrin Toffoc and Irfan Rais on the folk song “Ble’r Wyt Ti’n Myned?”, releasing their debut EP, Llanast Yn Y Llofft (a mess in the bedroom), hearing the songs on Radio Cymru and Radio Wales, and having their song “Slag Heap” nomiated in “best original English language song” category in the Welsh Folk Awards 2023. This song was also selected as a ‘Fresh Fav’ on the poplular music blog, Fresh on the Net. .
Lo-fi Jones’ roots are in folk, and prior to the pandemic, Liam and Siôn were travelling regularly (by bus & train where possible!) and perfroming with musicians from around the globe. Lo-fi Jones’s debut EP, “Llanast Yn Y Llofft”, is available now from the website and on streaming platforms, and many more releases are planned in 2023.