*Performers may be subject to change*

Aimie Laws (BC)
A shining star on BC’s emerging artist horizon, the sky’s the limit for this roots rock singer/songwriter
whose potent vocals and effortless command of the stage make her performances a pure delight to behold.

Alexis P. Suter Band (USA)
Alexis P. Suter is a true vocal phenomenon. When she takes the stage, thunder rumbles, lightning bolts from the sky and sparks fly everywhere! Her larger than life stage presence and powerful bass/baritone voice have won the praise of artists like B.B. King and Levon Helm, among countless others. Backed by her tight, soul-rocking ensemble, Alexis will take you on a musical journey of gut-busting blues and soul, the likes of which you’ve never heard before.

Daniel Champagne (AUS)
This is one young artist from down under who is definitely on his way to the top! Sounding closer to a three-piece band then a twenty year old singer/songwriter, Daniel Champagne uses a variety of tunings, two-hand tapping percussion, and fine finger work, as he moves between intense blues-driven crowd pleasers to centuries old folk, amping the experience along the way with his proud Aussie twang.

Elena Yeung (BC)
Nailing the old-time bluegrass genre to the wall, Elena Yeung serves up a heapin’ helpin’ of original well-crafted songs that range from fast and furious picking to mournful lullabies. Her lyrics tell simple yet vivid stories that reflect upon hardship, longing and life lessons of the human condition, while her infectious melodies and tasty five-string banjo will keep you coming back for more. Elena has been featured on CBC Radio’s “North By Northwest” and has enjoyed national airplay on CBC’s Radio 2, as well as local and provincial radio stations across Canada.

Erik Mongrain (QUE)
Erik Mongrain’s remarkable two-handed guitar tapping technique is nothing short of genius, making him a #1 YouTube sensation with almost four and a half million views of his signature song, “Air Tap”.


Ex-Centric Sound System (IS/GH)
Assembled by bassist extraordinaire, Yossi Fine, who has worked with David Bowie, Lou Reed, and Naughty by Nature among others, Ex-Centric Sound System unleashes a modern revolution on the world music scene, mixing Jamaican dub techniques, hip-hop beats, and techno. This seemingly bottomless melting pot of exotic and deeply textured blends is a new sound for the future featuring kora, balafon, kalimba, flutes and other African instruments, always with the rock steady grooves of one of the best bass players of our time.

The F-Holes (MB)
The F-Holes, named after those little f-shaped sound holes on many acoustic instruments, amalgamate rockabilly bass, jazz banjo, bluegrass trumpet, surf guitar and swingin’ drums in a fiery concoction that showcases this Manitoba band’s attention to musicianship, clever arrangements and finely crafted songwriting.

Five Alarm Funk (BC)
From full-on funk and fast Latin to epic reggae and thunderous Afro-beat, Vancouver’s Five Alarm Funk throws down intense horn lines and searing guitar leads backed by an explosive four-man percussive maelstrom so hot, their feverishly frenetic, costumed stage shows erupt into irrepressible dance mania every time they play.

Flora Ware (BC)
Part jazz diva, part soul singer, part cabaret performer, Flora pushes the boundaries of swing standards, R&B, or her own original songs with smokey smooth vocals and a compelling stage presence that is wise beyond her years.

Fred Penner (MB)
Fred’s dynamic live performances are an entertaining mix of educational song, musical fun and comedic merriment that enchant not only the little ones but also delight parents, grandparents and everyone who joins in Fred’s family-friendly circle of song.

Gord Downie & the Country of Miracles (ON)
Best known as lead singer/songwriter for the Tragically Hip, Canada’s trad rock icon, Gord Downie, backed by Canadian indie band, The Country of Miracles, emanates a passion and poignant sensibilities that few others deliver with equal conviction. Renowned as much for his compelling onstage presence as his eclectic original music and lyrics, Gord’s expressive songs are filled with timeless messages and imagery centered on Canadian themes, ranging in style from folk and country-rock to jazz-tinged experimental. Look for Gord’s third solo album, “The Grand Bounce” scheduled for release in June.

Grupo Fantasma (USA)
If your foot doesn’t immediately start tapping to Grupo Fantasma’s spicy blend of raucous horns and the rhythmic assault of the band’s slew of drummers, you need to see a doctor. Widely acclaimed as the funkiest and hardest working Latin orchestra to come of the US in the last decade, this ten man funk orchestra is bursting with energy and spontaneity offering an assortment of Latin flavors that extend from Cuban son to Colombian cumbia.

Jacky Essombe (BC)
Jacky Essombe’s message is simple. If you can breathe, you can dance. A true ambassador of the African culture, Jacky’s passion for African traditions inspired her to become a professional dance teacher and storyteller, using dance as a medium to express life to its fullest. Jacky will conduct dance workshops throughout the Festival weekend and invites you to join her and “open your heart and feel Africa.”

Joan Armatrading (UK)
Three time Grammy nominee Joan Armatrading is one of the most influential female guitar players of our time – the first female UK artist to debut at #1 on Billboard’s blues charts and the first female UK artist nominated for a Grammy in the blues category. With twenty spectacular albums to her credit (some reaching gold, platinum and silver status), she has touched millions of people the world over with her powerful vocals and distinctive musicianship, and consistently earned widespread and unanimous critical acclaim for almost three decades.

Joe Louis Walker (USA)
Joe Louis Walker’s powerhouse guitar virtuosity, unique voice, and prolific songwriting have earned him multiple Grammy & WC Handy awards; nominations for five of the top blues awards at the 2010 Blues Music Awards; and a reputation within the blues world as a true “living legend”.

John Lee Sanders (BC)
Billed as “Birmingham’s answer to Little Stevie Wonder” by the time he was twelve, John Lee Sanders can sit in front of a piano and transport you from the everyday to a smoky New Orleans Cajun bar, then on to a blues club in Chicago, and still further on to an uptown jazz club in Manhattan – all in one set! The full-bodied and blood-washed sound inherent in this WC Handy nominee’s Mississippi Delta roots style results in nothing less than New Orleans deep fried funk at its finest.

John Németh (USA)
Critically acclaimed as the next great blues superstar, John Németh is natural born to play the blues, belting out retro-modern blues and soul with emotion, taste and inspiration, and wailin’ on the harp like there’s no tomorrow.

Julian Fauth (ON)
2009 Juno Award winner for Blues Album of the Year, Julian Fauth mixes traditional blues and contemporary urban story telling with two-fisted barrelhouse piano blues and an individualistic style, making him one of the most mesmerizing blues artists to come along in years. Definitely an artist to watch, he was recently nominated for Acoustic Act of the Year and Piano/Keyboard Player of the Year at the Maple Blues Awards in January.
Kate Morgan (BC)
A sixteen year old singer/songwriter sensation from Kamloops whose fresh take on pop and rock was featured at several 2010 Olympic venues and is sure to create a buzz at this summer’s Lilith Fair concert in Calgary.

The Kerplunks (BC)
The Kerplunks have established themselves as Canada’s hippest new children’s entertainers with multi-award wins and nominations including a 2010 JUNO nomination for Children’s Album of the Year. This imaginative foursome plays catchy high-energy tunes guaranteed to engage kids of all ages through musical creativity and interactive sing-alongs … and they even wear outfits that match!!

Kinobe and Soul Beat Africa (Uganda)
Kinobe and Soul Beat Africa utilize traditional instrumentation including koras, kalimbas, adungus, endongos, ngonis, and drums, while enhancing the rhythms of Mother Africa with modern guitars and keyboards. Driving poly-rhythms touched by influences from around the globe underlay transcendent melodies and rich vocal call and response lyrics. This is a new groove for a new world.

Rolling Stone
describes K’NAAN as someone who “thinks like Bob Marley, flows like Eminem, and mixes African music with conscious hip-hop, unabashed pop and even metal”. With his 2009 release “Troubadour” up for three 2010 Juno Award nominations: Artist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year and Rap Recording of the Year, this Somali-born rapper is one of Canada’s fastest rising stars, widening the traditional hip-hop perspective through songs of global awakening that express emotion and provocative subject matter with a true sense of reality.

The Kropotkins (USA)
The Kropotkins’ unique sound fuses American Revolutionary militia band strains (fife, field drum, banjo and violin) with a punk-inspired Mississippi Delta blues, reminiscent of the legendary Captain Beefheart. The group is the Delta-punk invention of Soldier String Quartet composer and violinist, Dave Soldier, whose eclectic musical background includes playing guitar with Bo Diddley, collaborations with John Cale, and string arrangements for Talking Heads leadman, David Byrne; and drummer, Jonathan Kane.

Kym Gouchie (BC)
A self taught guitar player and traditional hand drum player, Kym Gouchie proudly represents the beauty and strength of her Carrier, Cree and Shuswap ancestors. As one of the Interior’s rising Aboriginal artists, she is often called upon to share her musical heritage at special events and has been making a name for herself in the Okanagan music community for almost a decade.

Lil’ Ed and the Blues Imperials (USA)
From smoking slide guitar boogies to raw-boned Chicago shuffles to the deepest slow blues, Lil’ Ed Williams is an awe-inspiring master bluesman and winner of multiple Blues Music Awards and Living Blues Awards including Band of the Year and Best Live Performer. He and his blistering road-tested band, the Blues Imperials generate a modern blues firestorm steeped in tradition and propulsive boogie that will take you on a fast trip from your chair to your feet.

MarchFourth Marching Band (USA)
Get set for complete sensory overload as the MarchFourth Marching Band busts out a zany funkfest of burlesque, vaudeville, jazz, horn-driven funk and marching band madness. Consisting of a twelve-piece horn section, ten-piece drum/percussion corps, battery powered electric bass, stilt-walkers, unicycles, fire eaters, puppets, flag twirlers, and a bevy of burlesque dancers, this bizarre big band spectacular is unlike anything you’ve seen before!

Maria Dunn (AB)
Maria Dunn is an arrestingly powerful singer/songwriter whose songs are inspired by both historical and contemporary figures. As a storyteller, she infuses the North American folk and country music styles absorbed during her Alberta upbringing with the influences of her Scottish heritage. Haunting melodies and rollicking sea shanties balanced with simple songs that celebrate life’s little uncertainties make this Edmontonian songbird’s repertoire a sonic feast well worth sinking your teeth into.

Martha Wainwright (QUE)
As the sister of Rufus Wainwright, and the daughter of Loudon Wainwright III and the late Kate McGarrigle, Martha Wainwright is proving to have some pretty outstanding chops of her own as she continues the legacy of one of the world’s most acclaimed families of song. Performing a beautiful selection of rare and acclaimed Edith Piaf songs, Martha bears it all with a depth and a passion you dare not miss in this stunningly brilliant performance.

Mishka (Bermuda)
Mishka’s musical vision and bare bones approach to his songs have garnered him a solid worldwide following for the past decade. Setting his message of empowerment and encouragement to hypnotic reggae grooves filled with socially conscious lyrics and seductive vocals, his multifaceted performances overflow with wholly positive vibrations that make him utterly captivating to see live.

Morlove (BC)
Morlove is the creative collaboration of Victoria’s Corwin Fox and Iroquois, Ontario’s Miss Emily Brown, both dyed-in-the-wool songwriters and multi-instrumentalists whose fluent use of acoustic guitar, double bass, banjo, mandolin, flugelhorn and autoharp come together in an authentic and yet experimental sound, reminiscent of amped folk played through an ancient jukebox full of nickels

Nomfusi (South Africa)
Nomfusi’s message of love will engulf you. Emanating joy and hope in a refreshing blend of Sophiatown (African jazz from the 60’s) and classic Motown, her larger than life vocals and an inner light that shines brighter than a supernova make for awe-inspiring performances that will leave your heart full.

Non Stop Bhangra (USA)
Bollywood comes to Roots and Blues with the swirling colors, pounding feet, and relentless energy of Non Stop Bhangra! Featuring their own high-octane MC and live DJ, accompanied by the thumping beats of a master dhol player, this group will blow you away with pulsating nightclub vibes the whole weekend through as they pump out a visual and sonic explosion of bhangra, hip hop, reggae, and electronica. To complete the experience, Non Stop Bhangra will even teach you how to dance like a true Bollywood star!


Ohbijou (ON)
This seven piece ensemble crafts songs wrought with the romantic afflictions of big city life, then dresses them up with intricate melodies and lush vocal harmonies. Ohbijou’s comprehensive musicality has earned them a string of accolades and an army devoted of fans, as well as appearances on CBC Radio’s Definitely Not The Opera and GO programs.

Old Man’s Beard (BC)
A unique blend of reggae, boot-stompin’ folk and rock and roll, balanced with well-placed harmonies and streamlined guitar work is the standard for this band that loves to play music anywhere and anytime for their growing fan base.

Pura Fé (USA)
Pura Fé has the power to move you! Bringing Native contemporary music to the forefront of mainstream genres, this 2006 Native American Music Award winner for Best Female Artist plays good old fashioned blues that reflect a potent mix of Native influences. Her slicing, lap-style bottleneck guitar and powerful vocals combine world beat rhythms with searing rez blues as she reveals the common bond and the indigenous connection to the birth of the blues.

Raygun Cowboys (AB)
Ride hell bent for boot leather with Edmonton’s Raygun Cowboys as they gallop their way across a range of styles mixed with rockabilly sensibilities, including jazz, bluesy numbers and the occasional obligatory drinking song thrown in. It’s the most fun you can have with your boots on!

Royal Wood (ON)
Exploring the vast architectures of lyrical expression and emotion, Royal Wood’s velvety vocals and elegant piano playing harken back to the traditions of song crafting that go straight to the heart. His classic tunes have been featured on several US and Canadian television shows and movie soundtracks with regular airplay and feature sessions on CBC Radio.

Sasha Lewis (BC)
Summoning edgy, powerful vocals and strong songwriting sensibilities, Sasha’s personal experiences and inner reflections serve as the cornerstones for songs that will touch your soul and warm your heart.

Scarlett the Scarecrow (BC)
Local entertainer, Roxy Roth, introduces the latest addition to her eclectic and sometimes eccentric family of characters, Scarlett the Scarecrow. Watch for Scarlett’s many talents including face painting, creative balloon art, live statue poses, and roving tom-foolery that will tease a smile from everyone she encounters as she roams throughout the Festival grounds.

Shane Koyczan and The Short Story Long (BC)
Multi-award winning spoken word performer Shane Koyczan, formerly one third of T.O.F.U., breathes new life into the genre of talk rock with his band, the Short Story Long, a trio with a musical range that stretches from folk to funk while showcasing all of the beautiful in between.

Shemekia Copeland (USA)
Still in her twenties, Shemekia Copeland already has a clear shot at the future title of Queen of the Blues. As heir to the rich tradition of soul-drenched divas like Ruth Brown, Etta James and Koko Taylor, her passion for singing, matched with her huge, blast-furnace voice, gives her music a timeless power and a heart-pounding urgency that comes from deep within her soul.

Supergenerous (ON/USA)
Serving up a cool cocktail of maritime, samba and country styles, Supergenerous is Canadian guitarist virtuoso and player of all things stringed, Kevin Breit; Ian DeSouza, one of Canada’s most sought after bass players; and Cyro Baptista, a Brazilian percussionist whose treasure trove of instruments consists of the traditional snare drum, Balinese gongs, metal refrigerator drawers and everything in between.

Tom Fun Orchestra (NS)
Fresh, intuitive and a hoot to listen to, this eight piece ensemble of Cape Breton Islanders have been blowing the top off every venue they play with their self-proclaimed “cluster-rock”, a musical blend of styles that range from swing and rock to jazz and Celtic.

The Trollsons (BC)
turn fantasy into enchanting real life characters with musical fun and storytelling based on traditional folklore. Their interactive tales, some based on stories by Hans Christian Andersen, feature incredible artistry in masks and costumes, physical comedy, improvisation, and good old fashioned troll trouble! These extraordinary characters will enthrall you with their imaginative flights of fancy as they roam throughout the Festival singing songs, dancing and playing music, reading rune stones, matchmaking and generally causing mischief and merriment.

Wassabi Collective (BC)
A spicy five-piece out of Nelson that utilizes dynamic explorative jams with feel-good lyrics and tasty pockets of funk to express messages of environmental consciousness and social and spiritual activism. Nominated in 5 categories, Wassabi Collective earned Album of the Year (“Stories Not Forgotten”) and Best Female Performer at the 2008 BCIMA’s.

Watermelon Slim & the Workers (USA)
Whether he’s playing smooth and shimmery on his slide guitar or moanin’ long and lonesome with a voice that grabs you by the heartstrings, Watermelon Slim aka Bill Homans sings songs wrought from Americana and traditional blues while his backing trio, the Workers, are a crack outfit whose rock-solid accompaniment surrounds Slim’s candid musings with eloquent proficiency.

Wil Campa & La Gran Union (Cuba)
With his unique voice and infectious ability to move an audience, you’re sure to be hit with Caribbean dance fever as Wil Campa and his 13 piece samba squad let loose their native Cuban sound.


Mishka’s musical vision and bare bones approach to his songs have garnered him a solid worldwide following for the past decade. Setting his message of empowerment and encouragement to hypnotic reggae grooves filled with socially conscious lyrics and seductive vocals, his multifaceted performances overflow with wholly positive vibrations that make him utterly captivating to see live.



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