From Blue Rodeo’s first chord on Friday, Aug. 17, to Sarah McLachlan’s final note on Sunday, Aug. 20, the stellar lineup of artists is growing. Along with crowd favourites including Hawksley Workman and Five Alarm Funk, the star-studded lineup includes Canadian guitar icon Sue Foley, singer-songwriter Abigail Lapell, good-vibes songwriter Boy Golden, storyteller and musician Dallas Arcand, Indigenous puppeteer and comedian DerRic Starlight, bluegrass group Jake Vaadeland and the Sturgeon River Boys, Indigenous storytellers Kuksjammin and singer-songwriter Little Miss Higgins.
Tropical partiers Mazacote, Saskatoon duo Munro & Patrick, festival-favourite Oral Fuentes Reggae Band, singer-songwriters Rain August and Ryley Booth, roots and reggae group the Spiritual Warriors, roots stars the Hello Darlins and local legends the Salmon Armenians round out the batch of newly confirmed artists.
Before the talent hits the stage, however, ROOTSandBLUES will start the party with a free concert downtown on Thursday, Aug. 17.
Featuring DJ Shub and Moontricks, the performance follows a week of live music planned for the Ross Street Plaza leading up to the festival, beginning with Oral Fuentes Reggae Band’s free concert on Monday, Aug. 14 at 11:45 a.m.
“We couldn’t think of a better way to set the stage for ROOTSandBLUES than with an intimate performance featuring these two incredible Canadian musicians,” Kevin Tobin, artistic director with the Salmon Arm Folk Music Society, said in a media release. “Live music fills people with such positive energy, and we wanted to share that experience with everyone in our community.”
Concerts run downtown daily until Melón Jiménez and Lara Wong’s Flamenco Project concludes the series Saturday, Aug. 19, during the weekly Farmers’ Market.
“Of course, there’s more to ROOTSandBLUES than just what happens on stage,” said Tobin. “We have exciting plans for this year’s workshops, Plulk’w Place and family zone activities that we will announce in the coming weeks.”
Last year, the festival welcomed more than 30,000 people to Salmon Arm, including more than 600 volunteers, food vendors, artisans and local suppliers.