by Stephen Policoff
This weekend, the 7th annual Brooklyn Folk Festival takes place at St. Ann's Church in Brooklyn Heights, with more than 30 bands playing a mix of old-time music, folk, blues, jug band, bluegrass, traditional Irish and Balkan music. There will also be vocal and instrumental workshops, a family-friendly square dance, jam sessions, film screenings, and the (in)famous Banjo Toss contest.
Among those scheduled to perform are The Four o’clock Flowers, who create an enticing and intoxicating sound—folk, gospel, country, blues, jazz—from the multicolored blossoms of traditional American music. Together, Ernie Vega and Samoa Wilson make music that feels eerily old yet provocatively new: the primal wail of Mattie Mae Thomas’s “Dangerous Blues,” the dark humor of Lead Belly’s “Poor Howard,” the limpid melancholy of the Prisonaire’s “Just Walking in the Rain.” Ernie’s spectral slide guitar is featured on “I Shall Not Be Moved,” while Samoa’s postmodern twist on an ancient Celtic lament can be heard in her own, “Irish Bar.”
Tickets and info on the Brooklyn Folk Festival here. A brief interview with Vega and Wilson after the jump.