FEST: Old Songs Festival Returns to Altamont Fairgrounds This Weekend


The audience at Old Songs

Photograph by Michael Seinberg

Returning to the Altamont Fairgrounds in Altamont, the 36th annual Old Songs Festival will host a wide variety of folk and other acoustic performers during its three-day run this weekend, Friday-Sunday, June 24-26.

The family-friendly festival of folk, traditional, Celtic, world music and dance is well known throughout the northeast for its relaxed atmosphere, interactive sessions and workshops, hands-on experience and participatory nature. In addition to three main stage concerts, there will be 120 daytime workshops led by the fest’s performers. Also featured are a juried craft show, food and instrument vendors, and a well-run children’s activity area.

The fest will kick off at 3:30pm on Friday with a batch of workshops. The Friday and Saturday night Main Stage concerts will be followed by an 11pm contra dance. And, of course, on-site camping is also available.

Here’s the line-up of performers for the 2016 fest’s Main Stage concerts:

FRIDAY (JUNE 24), 6:30pm
Emcee: John Roberts
Featuring Moonshine Holler, Nanne & Ankie, Ustad Shafaat Khan, Anne Hills, Annie & the Hedonists, Matthew Byrne, Kim & Reggie Harris and Cassie & Maggie MacDonald

SATURDAY (JUNE 25) 6:30pm
Emcee: Joe Jencks
Featuring Jeremy Kittel Band, Low Lily, Alistair Anderson, Robin & Linda Williams, Brian Conway & John Walsh, Barrule, Claudia Schmidt, Sally Rogers & Howard Bursen and Phil Wiggin’s Tidewater Trio

SUNDAY (JUNE 26) 3:30pm
Emcees Bill Spence & Roger the Jester
Featuring the Great Groove Band, the Canal Street String Band, Andy Cohen and Pete’s Posse

OLD SONGS FESTIVAL @ Altamont Fairgrounds, Altamont, June 24-26
BEACON JAZZ FESTIVAL @ Pete & Toshi Seeger Riverfront Park, June 25 UPDATE: This festival has been cancelled…
FREIHOFER’S SARATOGA JAZZ FESTIVAL @ Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Saratoga Springs, June 25 & 26
NEW YORK STATE’S 4TH OF JULY CELEBRATION @ Empire State Plaza, Albany, July 4, FREE
GREEN RIVER FESTIVAL @ Greenfield Community College, Greenfield, July 8-10
COUNTRYFEST @ Schaghticoke Fairgrounds, Schaghticoke, July 9
KIDS DAY @ Empire State Plaza, Albany, July 9, FREE
GREY FOX BLUEGRASS FESTIVAL @ Walsh Farm, Oak Hill, July 14-17
SCHENECTADY COUNTY SUMMERNIGHT @ State & Jay streets, Schenectady, July 15, FREE
ART ON LARK @ Lark Street, Albany, July 16, FREE
BLACK ARTS & CULTURAL FESTIVAL @ Empire State Plaza, Albany, August 6, FREE
SPEED OF SOUND FESTIVAL @ Dutchess County Airport, Wappingers Falls, August 7
NEW YORK STATE FOOD FESTIVAL @ Empire State Plaza, Albany, August 10, FREE
FRESHGRASS @ MASS MoCA, North Adams, September 16-18
JAZZ AT THE LAKE @ Shepard Park, Lake George, September 17 & 18, FREE
AMERICAN MUSIC FESTIVAL FOR THE LAKE @ Charles Wood Park, Lake George, September 24 & 25

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