This Fall, Nietzche’s debuts their first ever “Folkfest,” a 5-day festival featuring 48 musical acts from Wednesday, Nov. 9 through Sunday, Nov. 13.
Folkfest is a follow up to a successful Jazz-Fest this past spring, and a new direction for Allentown and Nietzche’s that aims to bring together a wide range of musicians, including local faces and nationally touring acts.
Music will kick off on Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. with Tyler Westcott and his trio performing gypsy jazz and old-time swing. The headliner on Wednesday, Folkfaces, will take the stage at 11:00 p.m. Folkfaces, a local Buffalo band, is known for their energetic, whiskey-drinking Americana music, fused with beautiful ballads. Music will go until 1:00 a.m., alternating sets between the main stage in the back, and the front barroom. Other acts on Wednesday include Sam Marabella & band, The Brothers Blue and Nickel City String Band.
Thursday is a Singer-Songwriter Showcase, with 15 performances over the course of the night! Each set will be 20 minutes long, with music kicking off at 8:00 p.m. and going until 1:00 a.m. The showcase will feature new artists and well-known local faces to the Buffalo music scene, including Bobby Angel, Joe Bellanti, Jungle Steve, Jack Topht, and Jeff Goldstein.
Friday will feature both local artist and touring acts, and will begin with a happy hour led by The Neville Francis Band. The Shelf Life String Band will kick the night off at 10:00 p.m. in the front barroom. Rear View Ramblers, the first headliner of the night, will then take the main stage at 10:30 p.m.
Rear View Ramblers draw inspiration for their sound directly from Buffalo, playing music that reflects “struggling days being young and broke, to playing music in Allentown and the Elmwood Village, to finding true love in a dive bar on the most random occasions.”
The Observers takes the stage at 11:30 p.m. in the front barroom, taking you on a journey of the human experience through music. The next headliner, nationally touring act, DiTrani Brothers, begins at 12:30 a.m. on the main stage.
DiTrani Brothers, Bobby and Walker, originally hail from North Bend, Washington, but began traveling coast to coast with their songs in 2013. Since then, the duo has evolved into a full band, complete with Dana Hubanks on washtub bass, and Eddie Gaudet on drums. Together, the band plays originals inspired by ragtime, Roma swing, and the traditions of these genres. After DiTrani Brothers, Friday’s music wraps up with a final performance in the front barroom at 1:30am from TCBand.
Saturday’s festivities with the first headlining act of the evening, The Steam Donkeys, performing at 8:30 p.m. on the main stage. With a long and well documented history as one of Buffalo’s longest standing country rock/folk outfits, The Steam Donkeys have seen their fair share, with multiple national tours, album releases, and lineup changes since its formation in 1991.
Local acts Catskill Mountain Boys and Rob Falgiano continue the party, before headliner Tough Old Bird hits the front barroom at 10:30 p.m. Formed in Fillmore, NY by songwriting brothers Matthew and Nathan Corrigan, Tough Old Bird provides a blend of authentic folk and blues that create a vision of the rural landscape it comes from. The group features a mix of electric guitar, accordion, harmonica, and acoustics that provide a sound that is at once both ancient and modern.
Seth Faergolzia’s 23 Psaegz follows Tough Old Bird with a set at 11:30 p.m. on the main stage. Touted as the 2010 successor to Seth Faergolzia’s 13-year project, Dufus, 23 Psaegz carries on the warm, weird legacy of Dufus by “stretching the boundaries of musical experience with unmatched craze and care”. Although the group was originally formed to perform Seth’s puppet-rock-opera “23 Psaegz”, it carried on to eventually become a collaborative backing ensemble for Faergolzia’s web of musical endeavors.
After a performance in the front barroom by Twenty Thousand Strongmen, final headliner of the evening, PA Line, will wrap up Saturday night on the main stage at 1:00 a.m. PA Line exhibits an original performance with musical styles ranging from Mumford and Sons, to Simon and Garfunkel. Each performance aims to get the feet dancing and create intimate emotional connections between artists and fan.
After such a headliner-packed Saturday night, Sunday’s music starts in the early afternoon, with Michael Faltyn kicking off on the main stage at 2:00 p.m. Performers alternate between the front barroom and main stage until the festival concludes with the weekend’s final performance by Ann Phillippone at 6:00 p.m.
Singer-songwriters Kathryn Koch and Sam Sugarman will provide support for the headliner for the evening, Tiny Rhymes, who will perform at 5 p.m. on the main stage. Tiny Rhymes is a folk group that draws more inspiration from the classical, chamber, and indie worlds than the country of bluegrass realm of folk. On Tiny Rhymes’ song-writing abilities, Artvoice writes, “Some people like to write songs while others tell stories. Vocalist/guitarist Sharon Mok tells her audience a story. Her voice floats beautifully above the acoustic sounds of her ‘chamber-folk’ band only to be matched with the soothing sounds of cello and violin.” The group features members all classically trained, but remaining instinctive in their composition and arranging choices.