For our 10th festival we welcomed a Folk by the Oak favourite – Kate Rusby - in the year that marked 25 years of her glorious music making. Of all the stars in folk music’s wondrous firmament few shine so bright. Kate was our original inspiration for a folk gathering at Hatfield House. We imagined a sublime summer evening of music with Kate – a thought which sparked the birth of Folk by the Oak. Kate has appeared twice before on our stage and it was such a pleasure to see her return for our milestone 10th festival.
Kate is a remarkable interpretive singer, her soulful vocals resonate with the wistful beauty of an earthbound angel. Inhabiting a lyric with unforced conviction – no matter how old or how modern – she has that rare ability to transport her audience, of touching them emotionally and making each tune live vividly within their experience and imagination.
Our audience were thoroughly entertained by Kate’s choice of much-loved classics from her back catalogue stretching over her two decades of music making together with a selection of fresh new songs from her most current album Life in a Paper Boat (Autumn 2016 release). As ever, she was joined on stage by the cream of British folk musicians who form her band. We were delighted to welcome Damien O’Kane on tenor Guitar and Banjo, Duncan Lyall on double bass, Steve Byrnes on bouzouki, guitar and tenor guitar and our very own Nick Cooke from ‘Sweet Liberties’ on the diatonic accordion.
Everybody loves and respects Kate Rusby, not just for her lovely voice, but for the way she has moved folk forward while remaining true to tradition…- Sunday Times -
...exquisite interpretations of traditional material from the pocket sized folk singer with the heartbreakingly tremulous voice and bawdy Yorkshire wit- Daily Telegraph -
The sound of folk music a la Rusby is on the change, yet whether backed by tenor guitars or banjo... it’s still the voice that hypnotises.- louderthanwar.com -