# cambridge folk festival
# What happened at CFF?
Cambridge Folk Festival was four days long, and I camped there with my Mum and my sister every night. We all had full-festival passes, and so did my grandparents. Here's a playlist of all the artists playing at the Folk Festival: Spotify Playlist (opens new window)
We arrived on Thursday and set up our tent near to the Flower Garden, the Hub and the Sessions Café. We accidentally broke one of the poles when putting it up, so it looked a bit wonky from the outside. Oops! Thursday was overall a nice relaxed day. We had a nice time listening to the music on Stage 2 (Stage 1 didn't open on Thursday). One of my highlights was heading over to the Club Tent to listen to Rura, a fantastic Scottish band. The music was great and they were just so funny! They also played on Stage 1 on Friday, but I didn't catch them there. Ralph McTell finished off the night on Stage 2 with his one hit "Streets of London". Apparently it's a really emotional song, and most of my family started crying - I didn't see what was so emotional about it though. Once he'd finished at around 11:30pm we said goodbye to the grandparents and headed towards the Hub (there was a late-night session going on). The CFF staff outside the Hub convinced me to sign up for the Hub Band Project, but I'll talk more about that later. I stayed at the Hub for about an hour playing tunes with some really friendly musicians before heading off to bed at just gone midnight.
The next day we started pretty early and headed out to Indigo to check on things. I got a tasty coffee, which was very nice. We got back to CFF for 11am so I could go and sign up for the Hub Band Project. I honestly didn't want to do it at first but the staff around the Hub the night before had managed to convince me. Rehearsals for the band were Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 1pm and 6:15pm. I turned up to both rehearsals that day, and learnt two new tunes for the performance, which was due to be on Sunday at 8pm in the Club Tent (essentially Stage 3). I can't remember much else happening on Saturday. I went to bed "early" at around 10pm. I wanted to be rested for Talisk, who were playing the next day.
The day of Talisk! Saturday! I was super excited for their two performances on Saturday evening, at 7:45pm and 10:35pm respectively. In the morning we headed out to the café again to check that everything was good, and I got another coffee! Again I can't remember much of what happened during the day on Saturday. At Hub Band we learnt another tune and a song, which I was singing in. It was a very nice song called Flash Company, and the people who weren't singing made up a fantastic melody on their instruments. It sounded amazing! In the evening I saw Talisk and it was one of the best evenings I've ever had. The music was so energetic and fun to listen to, I really enjoyed it. I met Mohsen after the gig at around midnight and then I went to play in the Hub again. I was extremely tired but I played some good tunes with the people in the Hub. As I was heading off I saw Mohsen standing outside the Sessions Café holding a bottle of lemonade in one hand, and a bottle of vodka in the other. A great role model! I got to sleep at around 00:45am.
Sunday, the final day of the festival. The day of the Hub Band performance. In the morning Mum helped me get some of the tunes that we were playing for the Hub Band straight in my head, and get some emotion into the song. In the rehearsals we sorted out arrangements, and got everything polished up. In the evening rehearsal, we practiced outside and got quite a crowd! John Doyle and John McCuster popped by, who had been playing on Stage 1 earlier that day. They said they loved the sound of us playing, which was lovely to hear. I later found out that John Doyle had said "that kid on the squeezebox has really got something". It made me feel so happy! After the rehearsal we headed over to the Club Tent and got ourselves set up on stage. The performance was amazing! So many skilled young musicians in the band, and the audience really appreciated us. Thanks to all the Hub staff for making this so great for me, and all the other kids!
That night I went to the Den, which is the small stage just outside of the arena. There was an open mic session going on there, which I stayed for the entirety of and performed in. It was such a great atmosphere, and some great music was being played. There were poems, comedy sketches, and even stories. It was a great way to mark the end of the festival and I'd like to thank Dan for organizing it all. I got to sleep at around 2am.
On Sunday morning we packed up the tent and went home. We survived the Cambridge Folk Festival, and it was amazing!
# What else have I been up to?
Honestly, not much at all. I've mainly just relaxed at home and done nerdy computer stuff. I'm off on holiday to Northumberland on Sunday, so expect posts about that!