“The Voice” Finalist To Head 2017 Ferdinand Folk Festival

Six Other Bands Offer Variety of Americana, Folk, and Roots Blues

Joshua Davis

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Ferdinand (Local Sources) – Joshua Davis and his band will headline the eighth annual Ferdinand Folk Festival on Saturday, September 16.

Recently making a national splash with his success on The Voice, Davis (pictured) is no stranger to the Ferdinand Folk Festival—in the inaugural year (2010), he accompanied Rachael Davis.  Davis almost didn’t audition when the popular NBC musical showcase The Voice called.  From his first performance, Davis triumphed, and over the course of the season, his rootsy, sincere approach emerged as a refreshing alternative and propelled him all the way to the finals.

“The amount of support I received from new and old fans has been mind-blowing,” Davis said.  “A lot of people were just happy that the kind
of stuff I do reached the mainstream, and that I actually got an original piece of music [his stirring “The Workingman’s Hymn”] on the show.”

Whether speaking or singing, the voice of Davis is a disarming instrument: weathered and warm, as capable of conjuring confessional intimacy on a
global stage as it is of making a small room, well off the beaten path, resonant with startling urgency and power.  Couple it with an earnest poetic sensibility, a boundless work ethic, and an uncanny gift for connecting with audiences spanning generations, and it’s no wonder that Davis is now poised at the brink of the sort of widespread recognition that typically passes right over such a humble troubadour.  Davis’s website is www.joshuadavismusic.com.

Also appearing at this year’s Ferdinand Folk Festival include…

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Justin Johnson (www.justinjohnsonlive.com).  One of the world’s leading ambassadors for the homegrown music movement, Nashville-based Roots Blues  and Americana recording artist Justin Johnson has been hailed by Guitar World as a “must-see act” and dubbed “The Wizard” for his command of a variety of stringed instruments.  Lauded as an “American Master” by John Carter Cash, Johnson has had his “funk” praised by Bootsy Collins, and his musical approach described as “timeless” by North Mississippi Allstar frontman Luther Dickinson.  This musical visionary has been recognized as Slidestock International Slide Guitar Champion.  Always innovating and following his own sound while taking inspiration from the past, Johnson blurs the lines between the traditional and the cutting edge, taking current day music back to its roots and keeping the blues alive.

Rachael Davis (www.rachaeldavis.com). The Ferdinand Folk Festival committee is excited to welcome the return of multi-instrumentalist Rachael Davis, who was a crowd-favorite at our opening event in 2010.  Renowned for her expressive—and explosive—voice, she has recorded numerous solo albums and collaborations uniting the worlds of folk, blues, country, and pop. Over a decade career, the Michigan native, now-Nashville artist, has
established herself as an artist with an intuitive and empathetic understanding of folk music, a poise and confidence on stage, and a song repertoire often associated with veterans with decades of experience.  With her powerful voice and original, thoughtful songwriting, she has earned fans around the United States and has also lent her voice to countless recordings for friends as well as for film soundtracks.  Davis and her band will the fifth performer on the Ferdinand Folk Festival main stage.

Tim Grimm and the Family Band (www.timgrimm.com).  After spending ten years as an actor in California—performing alongside actors such as Harrison Ford, Marlee Maitlin, and Mark Harmon—Tim Grimm moved his family back to southern Indiana close to his roots, currently hailing from
Columbus, IN.  Grimm is a bit of a Renaissance man in the performing arts world.  An Indiana storyteller and troubadour in the spirit of Woody
Guthrie, he has been likened to Rodney Crowell, Steve Earle, and Jackson Browne.   Having released nine solo albums and collaborated with other
Indiana singer songwriters like Jason Wilber, Krista Detor, and Carrie Newcomer, Grimm now shares the stage with his wife, Jan Lucas, and their
two sons Conner and Jackson.

Jeffrey Martin (www.jeffreymartinmusic.com)  Martin, originally from Texas, now hails from Eugene, OR.  Inspired by the music of Neil Young, John Prine, Jackson Browne, Bob Dylan, and Harry Chapin, Martin’s music has been likened to the styles of Josh Ritter and Joe Pug, with an attention to storytelling reminiscent of Chapin and Prine.  Since 2011 Jeffrey has released two full-length albums, *Gold in the Water* (2011), *Dogs in the Daylight* (2014), and one EP entitled *Build a Home* (2012).  Also in 2014, Martin signed to the Portland record label Fluff and Gravy Records.

Southern Sirens  (www.southernsirensmusic.com)  The Southern Sirens, an all-female pop/Americana band out of Louisville, Kentucky, perform a diversity of genres giving each of their songs a distinctive sound.  Conceived in December 2013, Southern Sirens has already accomplished much in a short time. In May 2014, the group was flown to L.A. after being selected as a Top 70 Act for ABC’s Rising Star on Season 1.  Out of over 6,000 entries in September 2015, the women won sixth place in the Pepsi’s Southern Original Competition at the Gulf Coast Jam Festival.  In addition to performing in festivals along the west coast, the Southern Sirens have opened for Bruno Mars, Michael Fitzpatrick, and Carlene Carter.  The core of Southern Sirens is Emmy Bodner (lead vocals and guitar) and Kelsey Lee (drums, cajon, and backup vocals).  Joining the duo for this year’s Ferdinand Folk Festival will be Kate Tyree (violin and upright bass) and Jessica Bullock (keyboard).

Carrie Lyn and the String Getup (www.facebook.com/stringgetup/) Carrie Lyn and the String Getup is three-piece, Kentucky string band plays Americana, bluegrass, honky tonk, and blues at regional venues.  A native of Calhoun, Kentucky, lead singer and guitarist Carrie Lyn Houtchen joins Eric Houtchen on mandolin and Jason Morris on upright bass to round out the trio.  Led by Carrie’s strong bluesy voice, the band enjoys bringing back and redoing some old-time blues and folk music.  The band also was reviewed in the November 2016 *New4U*—see pages 49-50:
http://www.news4u.me/november-2016/.

The Ferdinand Folk Festival—a free, earth-friendly, family-friendly event in Ferdinand’s 18th Street Park—promotes music, art, and environmental
awareness, and offers extensive, fun, and educational activities for children and all ages, including an annual, friendly singer-songwriter contest to promote regional talent.  For additional information and updates, visit www.ferdinandfolkfestival.com and find the festival on Facebook.

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