Artist bios


Spare Hands Maritime Stage, 1.25pm

Dave, who hails from Barnsley, plays country blues finger-style guitar, featuring the work of people like Mississippi John Hurt, Robert Johnson, Blind Willie McTell and Blind Blake. He also sings self-penned songs and a selection of modern and traditional English and American folk songs.


Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 2pm

Since 2015, Johnny has been writing self-penned material and delving deep into Northern English folk song and story. He’s released three albums and two singles, earning a formidable reputation on the British Folk and European underground scenes, performing more than 500 shows across Europe.

His most recent full length album, From Hull & Halifax & Hell (2020) took him to the Faroe Islands where he recorded a live album on the island of Nolsoy. This album earned him album of the week with Blues and Roots radio and great reviews among the British folk press.

Since March 2020, he has released three singles, and he was personally asked by Boff Whalley (Chumbawamba/Commoners Choir) to perform on WOVEN, an English Arts Council-funded project promoting the textile heritage of West Yorkshire.

Johnny also finds time to write reviews for the respected folk magazine Fatea as well as performing established festivals such as Belladrum Festival and Tradfest Edinburgh. He’s been billed with BBC Folk award nominees and winners in recent years, such as Stick In the Wheel, Martin Carthy, Ye Vagabonds, Lankum, Daoiri Farrell, Ewan McLennan, The Men They Couldn’t Hang and many more.


Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 7pm

Following a chance meeting at Whitby Folk Festival in 1993, Chris Sherburn (concertina) and Denny Bartley (vocals and guitar) have been bringing their unique sound to audiences across Europe and America, creating one of folk music’s most enduring partnerships. Their obvious rapport made them one of the busiest acts on the folk scene, both as a duo and with their well-loved trio/quartet Last Night’s Fun. Their soul-stirring songs, exhilarating tunes and quick-witted banter ensures that no two concerts are ever the same.

In 2016 Chris and Denny joined forces with Emily Sanders (fiddle/viola and vocals) and have since become a well-established trio, for the first time blending vocal harmonies and strings to underpin Chris and Denny’s unique sound, as well as providing a female lead vocal for some songs, and bringing a repertoire of English folk songs to complement the band’s more Celtic and traditional roots.

Emily was a founder member of the acclaimed trio Isambarde. She has also toured with Merrymouth (Simon Fowler of Ocean Colour Scene’s acoustic band) and regularly appears with Pete Morton and Chris Parkinson.

Their latest album, Beguile, is the first to feature Chris, Denny and Emily together, and also has some stellar guest performances from Martin Simpson and Andy Seward (Kate Rusby Band).


Spare Hands Maritime Stage, 1.50pm

As founder member and driving force behind Hull’s indie legends the Paddingtons, Lloyd Dobbs was an actual pop star, with two top 40 hits to his name (and six in the top 90), and was regularly mistaken for that guy from fellow popsters Keane. Apart from recently performing with the Padds at a reunion gig with no less than the Libertines and the Cribs – at that most intimate of venues, WEMBLEY ARENA – he has shunned the limelight in recent years, choosing instead to focus on playing gigs and getting banned from festivals with with Hull’s second-best folk band, the Hillbilly Troupe, and basically performing anywhere with a bar.

Seriously, though, he’s great and we love him!


Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 6pm

Fiddler’s Elbow are: Wolfy O’Hare, Gus Wilson, Sam Martyn and Phil Proctor, from East Yorkshire. They like weird and wonderful instruments as well as a good laugh. Wolfy specialises in all manner of early music instruments, from stringed things such as the viola da gamba and the viola d’amore, as well as woodwind, from a genuine 17th-century flute to the serpent, which is thought to originate from 16th-century France. Gus is the rhythm guitarist, the meat on the bones, the glue that holds it all together. He’s a former member of 1970s Hull band the Crack. Who? Well, if you can’t remember them, you clearly weren’t there. Or maybe that means you were. Anyway… Sam is the youngest member of the band, and plays whistle and harmonium. She’s Gus’s niece, and her suggestion to call the group The Band from Uncle was vetoed outright. Phil is the most recent member of the band and comes from a full career playing lead guitar in rock and pop music. He was intrigued when Wolfy offered him the chance for a change…


Spare Hands Maritime Stage, 2.25pm

Folklincs is an unincorporated society that wishes to preserve and encourage folk arts and roots music in the North Lincolnshire and Humber area. Its aim is to create an environment that enables people to access folk education and folk performance, and the society has high-quality tutors who are experts in their field.

North Lincolnshire has a rich folk heritage. Many renowned collectors such as Percy Grainger visited the area in the last century to gather songs, preserving them for future generations. Folklincs has produced a folk map of North Lincolnshire, detailing all the past collectors and folk singers who lived or visited the area.

The Folklincs band are the face of the organisation, actively promoting everything it does through their performances. They have produced an acclaimed album to accompany the map which you can hear a sample of on installations in the Rural Life Museum of North Lincolnshire or on YouTube.


Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 5pm

Goodnight Vincent are one of the UK’s most exciting folk-rock prospects, and their high-energy live shows are simply unforgettable. They combine guitars, piano, and violin to create something both dynamic and heartfelt, entertaining and personal, haunting and yet thrilling. Their unique sound has been matched with a fondness for playing in unusual locations (including on a boat, in a library, a youth hostel, an open-air market, and even in a boxing ring!) where they continue to leave audiences shouting for more. Described as combining the heart of Christy Moore, the voice of Nick Cave, and music that has a perfect synergy between Fleetwood Mac, the National, and the Waterboys, Goodnight Vincent are an absolute must see!


Spare Hands Maritime Stage, 12pm

Imogen Hart is a 22-year-old singer and songwriter based in Yorkshire. Her debut single, Save Me, held Hull Kingston Radio’s number one spot for two consecutive months in 2015. In 2020, Imogen released her debut EP, Give Me a Moment. With four BBC Introducing Humberside sessions under her belt, Imogen has been described as “one of Yorkshire’s most impressive up-and-coming singer-songwriters”.

Inspired by artists such as the Chicks, Gabrielle Aplin and Taylor Swift, this young artist is best known for her emotional and captivating acoustic performances that are bound to leave you mesmerised.


Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 4pm

One of the finest female singer/songwriters this country has produced in years, Edwina brings together English folk, Americana and the rich Northern singer/songwriter tradition to create a sound that’s truly her own. Highly accomplished, she’s toured with such notable performers as Jools Holland, Van Morrison, Nanci Griffith and Loudon Wainwright III to name just a few.

Her cover of the Randy Newman song Feels Like Home was featured in the Cameron Diaz film My Sister’s Keeper and has since had more than 10 million plays on Spotify and more than 30 million plays on You Tube.

Edwina numbers Michael Parkinson and Mike Harding among her fans and the title track of her album Pour Me A Drink was covered by Nanci Griffith, who calls her “the sweetest voice in England”.

Edwina’s fourth album, Ruby Rose, was released in December 2021.


Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 8pm

The Hillbilly Troupe are long-standing festival favourites and – according to the Hull Daily Mail – official Local Legends!

Their sound spans the centuries and encompasses a range of genres, including traditional English and Irish folk, ska, punk and Americana, and there is a strong and obvious sense of history. They have a reputation for encouraging a good time, both among their audiences and on stage themselves, and it’s been said that they make the Pogues look like the Nolan Sisters!

Hull’s finest will have you dancing, thinking and drinking, all at the same time – hopefully before the cops arrive!


Social, 4.20pm (Jon Palmer & Wendy Ross); Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 10pm (full band)

The Jon Palmer Acoustic Band are a high-energy folk, roots and rock’n’roll five-piece band, based in-and-around the musically vibrant West Yorkshire market town of Otley. Best described as “exploding out of the same box as The Pogues, The Saw Doctors, and The Waterboys”, the band have a great reputation on the live circuit.

Among a host of accolades, the band, who regularly perform at festivals and venues across the North of England, have been hailed “a blur of hedonistic delight” by Fatea Showcases and “the best upbeat folk band around” by the Yorkshire Gig Guide.

They are known as the “go to” band for finishing off the night in a joyful, energetic, and chorus-filled way.
With the release of their latest album One Fine Day the band received outstanding reviews in the national and local music press. The critically acclaimed album was produced by the highly regarded David Crickmore (Steve Tilston, Pete Coe, Jez Lowe) and comprises 12 new songs all written by Jon. One Fine Day features Jon’s excellent band throughout, and guesting on guitar and backing vocals on several songs is Baz Warne from the Stranglers. Crickmore also gets to play a range of instruments on many of the tracks.


Social, 12pm; Spare Hands Maritime Stage, 3pm

Originally formed in the year 2000, Monkey’s Fist have undergone several changes in personnel, the current line-up being together since 2015.

The group has performed in innumerable folk clubs and festivals across the UK, including Falmouth, Liverpool, Harwich, Saltburn, Scarborough, Whitby and Middlesbrough. International festival performances have included several festivals in the Netherlands, Germany and Ireland.

The group are committed supporters of the Royal National Lifeboat Institute and set aside the last weekend in September each year to sing in Robin Hood’s Bay in North Yorkshire to raise money for the local lifeboat.

​In 2019 the group were presented with a commemorative certificate by the RNLI for raising more than £5000 for the cause.


Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 5pm (supporting Goodnight Vincent)

For decades Rob Nicklas has played with many duos, trios and bands. He has performed across the UK and overseas. He has played in folk groups, been the caller in a ceilidh band, lead singer in a five-piece rock band and been a guitar player in a nationally renowned tribute band. Now he is concentrating on a solo career singing his own well crafted, melodic tunes with poignant lyrics and recording an album with a Grammy award-winning producer.

The songs Rob writes are full of emotion, and his lyrics convey the thoughts many find it hard to express. Rob admits he finds it almost impossible to talk about his emotions. “Writing songs about how I feel is therapy, there are mind places that are hard to visit both happy and joyful that find release in music and lyrics.” A Rob Nicklas gig is great fun, sprinkled with poignant lyrics. He is a superb entertainer with beautiful songs. Laugh or cry, he is always enjoyable – and you will probably do both.


Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 9pm

Pavey Ark are an alternative folk band from Hull. Atmospheric vocals and strings glide over finger-picked guitar, melodic bass and complex percussion. The result is a beautiful cinematic-folk sound that evades immediate comparison, but upon further listening, the band’s wide range of influences start to reveal themselves. From the laid back 60s/70s folk of Jack C Frank and Rodrigues through to Nick Drake and Radiohead. The band have become known for their sublime live shows and recently played the Acoustic Stage at Glastonbury 2022. Pavey Ark’s debut album Close Your Eyes and Think of Nothing received wonderful reviews from UNCUT, Record Collector and Folk Radio.


Spare Hands Maritime Stage, 3.40pm

Ellie Pollard has been singing publicly since she joined the internationally acclaimed Maureen Hunter Singers choir when she was just eight years old, and went on to perform in venues such as St Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican, St Mark’s Basilica in Venice, and St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle. In later years she allied that classically trained voice with a guitar and – occasionally – piano, and started performing at open mic nights around the Hull area, before winning her first songwriting award at the Cropton Folk Festival, aged just 14. Since then she has gone from strength to strength, culminating in a showstopping performance on the Introducing Stage at the Great British Folk Festival last year, which earned her a slot on the Main Stage at this year’s event, where her repertoire of self-penned work and traditional folk songs will showcase her talents to an even wider audience.


Social, Humber Street, 2pm

Riding the Stang is a folk opera written and performed by Hull Community Theatre and the May Geslins. It aims to portray a loose and light-hearted history of Hedon, a historic market town just east of Hull, and some of its characters by acting out scenes as reported in local history books and local newspapers.

Musical links are provided by the May Geslins and audience participation is encouraged! It is sure to be an entertaining and interesting afternoon.

So, if you wish to find out about William le Gros, rotten boroughs, who or what were miserable little worms, or, where the townsfolk of Hedon vanished to in 1892, then come along to find out!


Spare Hands Maritime Stage, 12.30pm

For the past three decades, no maritime or shanty festival in the UK or Europe has been complete without the appearance of Pete ‘Shanty Jack’ Hayselden. A Yorkshireman by birth, he worked for nearly 30 years in tugs on the Humber. He used to be a keen yachtsman, but nowadays he has no time for that as music has taken over. Nevertheless, it is his intention to get his own boat finished so that he can spend retirement sailing from festival to festival to visit all the multitude of friends on the ‘shanty scene’… Well, he can dream!

As well as appearing at various festivals throughout the UK and Europe, Jack was responsible for establishing the Hull Sea Fever Festival, which was regarded by many as the premier UK shanty festival, and the precursor to the current Hull Folk and Maritime Festival.


Spare Hands Maritime Stage, 1.10pm

Corona Smith sings songs and plays instruments. Sometimes with other people in his band Shiznitz and sometimes by himself. If he gets 50 quid and a chip butty for performing he’s happy. In fact the chip butty is considered a bonus. He can be entertaining for a full fifteen minutes, hopefully.


Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 1pm

The Smugglers are a group of four friends who love to sing traditional and contemporary folk songs together. Harmonies and enthusiastic strumming and plucking blend to create a joyful, singalong experience of songs from the sea and the land.


Spare Hands Maritime Stage, 4.20pm

Spare Hands are Hull’s foremost (some would say only!) maritime folk band. They are: Mick McGarry, Bill Sowerby, Les Ward, Steve Gardham, Tom Gaynard and Andy Buckton.

With origins in the Yorkshire Garland Group, which was formed in 2006, the original quartet of Mick, Bill, Les and Steve produced the first album, of whaling songs, Where the Whalefish Blow, in 2014. This sold really well and the group soon added a fifth member, whistle player and singer Tom Gaynard, and embarked on a second album consisting of songs of the trawling industry. The album, simply titled Spare Hands, again sold really well, so the group soon embarked on a third album, this time songs of the local waterways. The album was titled A Dead Bod: Songs of the Humber Waterways. At the time the preservation of the large painting of A Dead Bod by Len (Pongo) Rood had just been promoted by Burnsy on Radio Humberside, so Steve wrote the song The Ballad of Dead Bod telling the story of the famous Humber marker. Soon afterwards the band expanded once again, bringing new younger blood in with the addition of local singer/guitarist and event promoter Andy Buckton.

Spare Hands, along with Hull Folk Collective and a few others, are members of Hull Chanty Crew, a loose collective who regularly perform at maritime events and run workshops on the history of maritime songs and chanties.


Dan Thomas Minerva Stage, 3pm

Expect rip-roaring jigs, reels and a selection of choice songs from the British Isles (and Brittany!) performed by three folk music enthusiasts from Beverley: Phil Simpson (fiddle, melodeon, vocals), Paul Blackburn (uilleann pipes, fiddle) and Simon Davey (guitar, vocals) – influenced by, and for fans of The Bothy Band, Lunasa, Luka Bloom, and oh, The War on Drugs.