FolkWorld #53 03/2014
© Editorial by Walkin' T:-)M

The F Word

The FolkWorld webzine started out when there was kind of a folk/world/roots music revival in the mid 1990s. The millennium however saw major interest dropping. The word Folk disappeared from the British Folkroots magazine as well as the German Tanz- und Folkfest Rudolstadt, since then going under the name of fRoots[34] and TFF.[52]

Oscar Isaac

These days festivals, even as prestigious as Denmark's Tønder Festival,[52] are struggling for survival. In the Netherlands, our long-time friends from Folkwoods[49] called it a day, and its successors launched a smaller budget Parkfest. The French Rencontres Internationales de Luthiers et Maîtres Sonneurs,[49] the important rendezvous for instrument makers since 1976, ceased operations this January.

On the other hand, folk music is still thriving. There's a scene of young performers who are taking up the banner again and are introducing folk music to a new audience. This is quite different from country to country. At the moment I would say: Britain - fine! Spain - sufrimiento! Germany - nix-genaues-weiss-man-nicht!

But what's most important, the F Word doesn't act as a deterrent anymore. They call it nu folk these days, and beyond doubt their most successful representatives are chart-conquering Mumford & Sons.

You might argue that their music has nothing to do with folk music at all. Marcus Mumford though made it onto the soundtrack of Inside Llewyn Davis[53] and even if the Coen Brothers' film will not create such a buzz for acoustic troubadours as their O Brother Where Art Thou? did for old-time music, simple and plain folk music comes up time and time again as if nothing had happened.

Let's work for it, and keep folking on! T:-)M

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