Seasick Steve and folk favourites announced for annual Hatfield House music festival
- Credit: Supplied by Folk by the Oak
Three big names including bluesman Seasick Steve have been announced for an annual Hatfield music festival.
Folk by the Oak will return to Hatfield next summer on Sunday, July 19, 2020.
Organisers have confirmed the first acts playing the all-day festival in the grounds of Hatfield House, with Seasick Steve joined on the bill by international folk legends Richard Thompson and Kate Rusby.
The perfect combination of gifted songwriting, deft fingers, easy-going charm, sharp wit and gravel voiced blues, Seasick Steve's popularity is no doubt partly thanks to his attitude to live performances.
He says: "I live in the world of going out and rocking, you know. We do our best, every night.
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"If someone has taken the trouble to spend their money to come and see us play, then we owe them to deliver. They're my boss!"
Seasick Steve has had a busy 2019 writing songs for his next album, which is due for release in the spring.
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Folk by the Oak organisers told us they were "over the moon" that he had agreed to join them to close their one-day festival at the Hertfordshire stately home.
Steve's long-time drummer Dan Magnusson - aka Crazy Dan - will, of course, be with him on the tour.
Seasick Steve can't wait to get out on the road, and is quoted as saying: "We rock. That's what we do.
"When I see a club full of people, or a field full of people, they're just with us and ready to get down in the mud - sometimes real mud! We love it, and we love them."
Also gracing the FBTO main stage next summer will be Ivor Novello Award-winning and Grammy Award-nominated Richard Thompson.
One of the world's greatest guitarists, Richard last performed at Folk by the Oak in 2014, receiving rapturous applause.
His easy rapport with his audiences combined with his exceptional songcraft and guitar playing ensure that he remains one of the most influential artists on the music scene today.
Indeed, everybody from Led Zeppelin's Robert Plant, Don Henley, and Elvis Costello to REM, Sleater-Kinney and David Byrne has covered his music.
Festival director Adam Slough said: "Richard is an esteemed icon of the festival world and we receive so many requests every year for his return.
"We are beyond delighted he has agreed to join us again this summer."
Richard's career has been powered both by his ability to compose the most evocative of songs and his simply incredible guitar playing.
He holds a coveted spot on Rolling Stone's '100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time' and counts a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Americana Music Association in Nashville, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the BBC Folk Awards among his many accolades.
His anthem, 1952 Vincent Black Lightning, sits proudly on Time Magazine's '100 Greatest Songs Since 1923' list.
Another artist who is back by popular demand is Folk by the Oak favourite Kate Rusby.
She last performed in the Queen Elizabeth Oak Field in Hatfield in 2017, the year that marked Folk by the Oak's 10th festival and 25 years of Kate's exceptional music making career.
Renowned for being a remarkable interpretive singer, at her last Folk by the Oak appearance audience members were thoroughly entertained by Kate's warm Yorkshire wit and her choice of much-loved classics from her back catalogue stretching over her two decades of music making, together with a selection of then new songs from Life in a Paper Boat (2016).
Next summer Kate will be enchanting festival-goers with numbers from her more recent albums Angels and Men and Philosophers, Poets and Kings.
She will be joined on stage by the cream of British folk musicians who form her select band - Damien O'Kane on guitar, electric tenor guitar and banjo, Steven Byrnes on bouzouki, Nick Cooke on diatonic accordion, and Duncan Lyall on double bass and moog.
Folk by the Oak organisers have also announced the first two names for their smaller second stage in Hatfield Park.
The Acorn Stage is billed as the festival's "platform for a new generation of folk artists" and the first acts announced are Ye Vagabonds and Katherine Priddy.
Super early bird tickets for Folk by the Oak 2020 are on sale for £35.50 for a limited period at www.folkbytheoak.com
Children's tickets cost £18.