Bristol Folk House - Learning for pleasure

Bristol Folkhouse Music

Upcoming live music

Henry Priestman

Friday, 28 November 2014
Ticket price: 
£10.50 inc booking fee

“Absolutely brilliant.....he’s found his voice!” Bob Harris, Radio 2

FOLLOWING a successful career on the rock and pop scene as part of the Christians (he wrote most of their many hits with album sales of over 3 million!) Henry Priestman’s NEW solo album (The Last Mad Surge of Youth) has just been released to national acclaim. It follows up his 2009 debut solo album (The Chronicles of Modern Life) that found him thrust into new territory with acoustic based songs getting him much radio airplay and renewed interest. He has since found himself performing at numerous venues and festivals that appear to simply lap up his music and stage-presence. His natural Liverpool charm resonates throughout, and his self-effacing outlook masks an enviable talent for what is essentially song-writing at its very best.

“Rough-hewn charm that should appeal to listeners for whom thumping disappointment & bloody-minded stoicism are the new rock and roll”
The Sunday Times

Live at Beverley Festival

Lily & Madeleine

Saturday, 29 November 2014
Ticket price: 
£10.50 inc booking fee

“Their voices can pierce through the chaos of everyday life and actually make you stop what you’re doing.” American Songwriter

LILY_AND_MADELEINE_inaBoat_sm.jpgWhen Indianapolis sisters Lily and Madeleine Jurkiewicz first started making music together, it didn’t cross their minds that they could make a living at it. Although they now find themselves in an acclaimed full-fledged career, what got them here has nothing to do with money, and everything to do with the spirit.

“The music will always be first,” says Lily. Indeed, Lily & Madeleine’s artistic souls are obvious to anyone who has heard their recordings. From the beginning, the sisters’ calling card has been the breathtaking and intuitive union of their voices.

When the two come together in ecstatic and seamless “blood harmony,” it’s a sound that continues to haunt long after the songs are sung, leaving an electrical charge behind like a sparkling tracer in the air. Lily & Madeleine however, are equally distinctive as soloists as they are as harmony singers. When they step out individually as vocalists, Lily’s warm, smoky alto is the counterpoint to Madeleine’s crystalline, bell-like soprano. 

Guy Calhoun band (Album launch)

Sunday, 30 November 2014
Ticket price: 
£5.50 Adv £6.50 on the door inc booking fee

"Guy is one of the most versatile musicians I've met, with a natural talent for putting real feeling and soul into whichever musical genre he's working in with great conviction and spirit." Jim Barr (Get the Blessing & Portishead).
“This collection of new material from Guy Calhoun successfully pulls off the neat trick of sounding freshly minted while echoing the strong tradition of English singer-songwriters.”

Guy Calhoun - acoustic guitar and vocals, Nina Griffin - violin, Kesty Morrison - backing vocals, Beth Porter - cello, Joe Allen - double bass, Henry Martin - harmonica, Kit Hawes - lead guitar, Matt Brown - percussion

Tony Benjamin.Guy's own Folk ballads talk of journeys, seasons, of beginnings and endings woven into circles of growth and light, night and day. The musical arrangements trickle and flow like elements between thoughtful lyrics, beautifully phrased and sung. In this album of very personal songs, Guy has called upon a hand-picked group of talented musicians to add a rich third dimension to his own highly original and accomplished compositions connecting back to his origins in Folk, one of the families of roots music that links him to the heart of Reggae, Latin Jazz and Blues for which as an instrumentalist he is more widely known.
Born in 1975 in Bristol, Guy spent his childhood surrounded by musicians, artists and DJs, attending live music events in Folk clubs, flash art shows and UK festivals. At the age of eleven he was performing his first gigs at underground venues such as the Sculpture Shed (McArthur’s Yard near the SS Great Britain), at “Semi Ambulent” happenings on reclaimed land, in cafes and busking on the streets of Bristol.

Kettle Of Fish and Firefly

Saturday, 6 December 2014
Ticket price: 
£7.50 inc booking fee

An evening of quirky, mellifluous, and gorgeous a cappella singing.

Bristol’s own a capella combo, Kettle Of Fish finally return to the Folk House and this time they're bringing some friends along.

Looking for an opportunity to arrange and sing the more unusual songs of the popular idiom, David Yapp enlisted his singing friends Adam Barber (co arranger), Neil Bett, John Drowley and Jorge Sved.  Having added many new arrangements during their musical evolution, their repertoire now ranges from the well-known and well-loved to the comical and the undiscovered gems, the witty and the moving, the sublime and most definitely the ridiculous.  Elvis Presley, The Magnetic Fields, Ben Folds, The Righteous Brothers, Spanish Christmas Carols, 1970's Kids TV, Seal and other lesser known artists are likely to be included in a Kettle Of Fish gig.

At times strangely beautiful, at other times beautifully strange and often just silly, this is a different Kettle Of Fish. Unless you've seen them before.

And joining them in the Folk House and starting the evening off properly, we have


Be transported by the uplifting harmonies of Firefly, a remarkable blend of four female voices now becoming established on the Bristol scene.  Firefly's material ranges in style from comic cabaret,  to ancient judaeo-spanish folk songs, heart-spinning original material and well known contemporary songs, all creatively arranged into four parts. Sung from the heart, performed with energy and with a dash of mischief, Firefly are sure to surprise and delight you.

Firefly are Abbie Hastings, Jules Olsen, Jenny Sansom, and Michal Nahman. 

Euros Childs (Solo Piano set)

Friday, 19 December 2014
Ticket price: 
Tickets £12.50 in advance please. (£10.50 conc)inc booking fee

Former Gorky's Zygotic Mynci front man and singer songwriter, Euros Childs will be releasing his 10th album 'Eilaaig' on the 8th December. It's a stripped down affair featuring voice and piano only and will be released on his National Elf label.
On the night, Euros will be performing two sets; the first set will be a performance of the new album 'Eilaaig' in it's entirety, and the second set will consist of more familiar material from Euros' extensive back catalogue.

Robin Mitchell

Saturday, 20 December 2014
Ticket price: 
£5.50 inc booking fee
Robin has played in many bands and under many names, but is most persistent in his solo work as a songwriter, producer and performer. His shape-shifting live band plays guerrilla gigs around Bristol and beyond, and between show Robin scurries down to his basement studio to continue to generate a prolific musical outpouring. His poetic lyrics, soft vocal and fumbling guitar style are the common threads running through an otherwise boldy diverse catalogue of songs.

Robin's annual project (now in its eighth year) to release a selection of festive fireside songs has received growing acclaim, and this year's 'Dust' promises to leave you smiling and spellbound in equal measure. The EP launch at the legendary Folk House will be an intimate and stripped back affair with plenty of room for contemplation, and with some hearty singalongs thrown in for good measure!

"Written with the sensitive touch of a wordsmith, "Not Peace, But A Sword" is as thought provoking a song as I've heard for many a day. Thoroughly recommended... this should be snapped up by all those who want folk with serious content."
9/10 (Cross Rhythms)

"Robin’s lyrics are super charged with emotion, when that chorus hits it knocks you to the floor. There’s a lot going on (in a good way), Robin’s a natural and I imagine he has a very full songbook to get through yet! Poetic and inspirational." (Folk Radio UK)

"We did manage to catch some music on the acoustic stage and one musician we saw was singer/songwriter/poet Robin Mitchell. A beautiful stripped down acoustic set with his supporting band... Robin was engaging the audience throughout with his stunning vocals and backing harmonies, a nice surprise to our ears and music that left us with a smile." (The Flux - Harbour Festival 2013)

Julia Turner with suport from Isolde and Lauren Bradford

Friday, 30 January 2015
Ticket price: 
£7 inc booking fee

The Eko Collective Presents…

An evening of musical tapestries woven by 3 independent female artists who also come together to share the stage in a capella harmony.

A jazz loving singer/songwriter Julia Turner draws from a large repertoire of original songs and old but thrillingly fresh standards. Julia studied jazz at Leeds College of Music and then flew half way around the world to explore her paternal homeland of Australia. After romantic notions of being a waitress in Melbourne fell flat she busked her way out of a dead end job and started writing all about it. She spins her stories through intricate vocal melodies and deft finger picking guitar. Back home in Bristol Julia continues to write and perform both as a solo musician and with back up from the many musicians she meets along the way. She has a keen passion for vocal harmony and spends much of her time arranging for and directing large and small vocal
Isolde is a singer-songwriter from London, based in Bristol. Her early influences were the colours, fabric and clay of her artist family, a cappella Gospel music, and 90s pop. Oddly for a Londoner, she always felt the strong call of the wild, and often felt more like a mythical creature trapped inside a city-kid. This might explain the delicious mix of natural and electronic sounds that meet in her work, echoing influences such as Fourtet and Bjork. Isolde crafts her songs more like sound paintings that drip with world-spiced harmonies and sit in a collage of found sounds and stories of the everyday. Isolde's work has been compared to Hanne Huckleberg, Tune-yards, Cosmo Sheldrake and Coco Rosie, and has been flavoured as a jazzy-experimental-folktronica. Whatever you make of it, her music is sure to envelop you in a cocoon of sensual treats.

Lauren Bradford is a folk singer/songwriter from the San Francisco Bay area, based in London. Lauren grew up on a healthy diet of Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Etta James, and the Temptations, which explains the brazen soulfulness that seeps through into her delicately picked folk songs. The otherworldly sound she creates is comparable to a female Nick Drake, with more vocal runs. Lauren explores life the way her melodies explore notes, she is a lover of travel and movement and has lived in Liverpool, Leeds, Bristol, and London since arriving in the UK in 2010, soaking up their music along the way. Her story-rich lyrics draw you in close to her warm and inquisitive worldview, while her hypnotic guitar patterns create a bed on which her voice sets sail. Listening to Lauren provides you with one of your musical 5 a day, she brings you down to earth, while her playful sweetness is sure to entertain and charm.

  • Ticket information

    Tickets are available from:

    The Bristol Folk House
    40A Park Street
    BS1 5JG

    0117 926 2987

    There is 50p Administration fee on all tickets

    For artists wishing to play at the Folkhouse please see our demos page.

    If you're looking for information about a past gig please see the music events archive.


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