Ulster American Folk Park

26th Annual Bluegrass Music Festival

Get down to the 26th Annual Bluegrass Music Festival to enjoy three days of live music from some of the biggest names in bluegrass and old time music.

Fri 01 Sep 2017 - Sun 03 Sep 2017

Exit Menu

This event has expired

There’ll be strumming on the porches of the log cabins, dancing in the cobbled streets and jamming outside the General Store! 

Download a copy of the programme

Image: 26th Annual Bluegrass Music Festival
26th Annual Bluegrass Music Festival

Enjoy three days of world class bluegrass and old-time music featuring the multi award winning Dale Ann Bradley Band from the USA, Viper Central from Canada, Robirohi from Estonia, Flats & Sharps from England and The Dirty Beggars from Scotland. With home grown talent from throughout the North and South of Ireland including among others Rackhouse Pilfer, The Henry Girls, The Whileaways, Old Hannah and Roots Revival, you'll uncover rhythms that are sure to have your hands clapping, feet tapping and heart racing all weekend long!

What can I enjoy?

Friday & Saturday party in the park

Time: Lunchtime ‘til Late

Enjoy our toe-tappin, knee-clappin, finger-pickin’ mini music-marathons on Friday and Saturday. From 2.00pm on Friday you can relax in the Festival Village as mandolins, banjos and fiddles keep the Main Stage alight all afternoon. As dusk falls on Friday Old Hannah who are renowned for bringing audiences to a standstill with their stunning four part harmonies will also whip revellers into a fiery frenzy with their fast picking and powerful tunes.

They’ll be followed by five incredible young musicians from the south of England named Flats & Sharps who blur the lines between Bluegrass, Folk, Country & Pop gaining recognition for performing their own highly original songs as well as their renditions of Bluegrass classics.

Back by popular demand is Viper Central from western Canada. The Vipers display virtuosic chops on fiddle, mandolin, guitar, banjo and dobro, ripping through classic and original bluegrass pieces at barn-burning tempos and the thing that makes this band the most unique and exciting is how far they’re able to wander from their home as a bluegrass band, turning the genre on its ear, while remaining true to their roots.

Friday night will finish off with a multi-talented outfit from Central Scotland who have the music of the Appalachian Mountains running in their blood. The Dirty Beggars possess their own brand of down and dirty bluegrass fused with traditional Celtic sounds that has been electrifying crowds all over the UK and Europe for several years. Their music has been described as: "tight, stompin' and quite simply incredible...wholesome harmonies with the sharp kick of a mule."  And that’s all on the first day and night!

Image: Viper Central
Viper Central

From 12.30pm on Saturday we have six stages of music in full flow. You can also bring along your own guitar, fiddle or banjo and join fellow musicians at the Pickin’ Patch in the Pennsylvania Barn or listen to Dale Ann Bradley in conversation at The Mc Lecture. All this good musical fun can be enjoyed with fantastic fusion food and washed down with quality craft beers brewed by the Pokertree Brewing Company.

From 6.30pm through to midnight you can enjoy a unique line-up featuring all the way from Estonia, Robirohi whose wonderful 4 part harmony singing and quality musicianship have impressed audiences throughout Continental Europe for many years.They will be followed by highly talented songwriters, musicians and sisters The Henry Girls from Co. Donegal whose spine tingling three-part harmonies sets them apart. Our exclusive American headline act for the 26th Festival is Dale Ann Bradley. From driving, energetic bluegrass to gentle acoustic ballads, Dale Ann and her multi-talented band deliver fresh, compelling songs in performances that have captured the hearts of audiences around the world. It’s no wonder that this Kentucky Girl has won the International Bluegrass Music Associations’ Female Vocalist of the Year award 5 times!

Bringing Saturday night to a close we welcome back Rackhouse Pilfer from County Sligo. This highly talented six-piece return with their stompin' Americana, roots and ‘rockgrass’ whose radically distinctive sound and high octane performance promise to light up the stage.

Image: Dale Ann Bradley
Dale Ann Bradley

Friday line-up

  • The Dirty Beggars (Scotland)
  • Viper Central (Canada)
  • Flats & Sharps (England)
  • Old Hannah (Sligo)
  • Geordie McAdam (Down)
  • Roots Revival (Armagh)
  • The Whileaways (Galway)
  • Mules & Men (Dublin)
  • Robirohi (Estonia)

Saturday line-up

  • Dale Ann Bradley (USA)
  • Viper Central (Canada)
  • Robirohi (Estonia)
  • Flats & Sharps (England)
  • The Dirty Beggars (Scotland)
  • Rackhouse Pilfer (Sligo)
  • The Henry Girls (Donegal)
  • Clew Bay Critters (Mayo)
  • Old Hannah (Sligo)
  • Roots Revival (Armagh)
  • The Whileaways (Galway)
  • Richie Foley & Paddy Kiernan (Cork)
  • Watery Hill Boys (Louth)
  • Mules & Men (Dublin)
  • Geordie McAdam (Down)
  • Northern Exposure (Armagh)
  • Broken String Band (Down)

Sunday Bluegrass in the Park

Time: 12.30pm to 6.30pm

Stroll through the outdoor museum as a mix of  international and home-grown talented acts fill the air with the infectious sounds of bluegrass and old-time music.

Whileaways
Whileaways
Richie Foley & Paddy Kiernan
Richie Foley & Paddy Kiernan
Flats & Sharps
Flats & Sharps
Dirty Beggers
Dirty Beggers

Listen to a performance by the popular Bluegrass Festival Choir and marvel at the number of home-grown acts now playing Bluegrass and Old-Time music across the country that will have you singing and dancing along with our visiting artists from near and far!

Rackhouse Pilfer
Rackhouse Pilfer
Geordie McAdam
Geordie McAdam
Old Hannah
Old Hannah
Northern Exposure
Northern Exposure

Saturday line-up

  • Dale Ann Bradley (USA)
  • Viper Central (Canada)
  • Robirohi (Estonia)
  • Flats & Sharps (England)
  • The Dirty Beggars (Scotland)
  • Rackhouse Pilfer (Sligo)
  • Henry Girls (Donegal)
  • The Whileaways (Galway)
  • Richie Foley & Paddy Kiernan (Cork)
  • Clew Bay Critters (Mayo)
  • Watery Hill Boys (Louth)
  • Geordie McAdam (Down)
  • Northern Exposure (Armagh)
  • Broken String Band (Down)
  • Bluegrass Festival Choir

Saturday line-up

Image: Robirohi
Robirohi

This memorable weekend of the best in traditional American Folk music will come to an end in the unique setting of the 18th century style Meeting House with its thatched roof and boxed pew seats where Dale Ann Bradley and her Band will share their deeply rooted respect for the Bluegrass gospel music tradition. Dale Ann is one of the finest exponents of Bluegrass Gospel music and song.

She will be supported by the ever popular Robirohi who once again will enthral our Bluegrass Gospel followers with their unquestionable high quality vocal and musical talent which has made them into one of the best bluegrass gospel bands outside of the United States.

The Mc Lecture

The Mc Lecture 1.00pm – 2.00pm, Saturday 2 September.  Mellon Centre for Migration Studies Dale Ann Bradley in Conversation A unique opportunity to sit for an hour in the company of one of the finest bluegrass artists ever to appear at our Festival and learn more about the life and works of the multi award winning treasure that is, Dale Ann Bradley. The Mc Lecture is named after well-loved and respected music broadcaster and former Festival compere Tony McAuley & music scholar and archivist Rodney McElrae who both had a long and passionate interest in the Festival.  

Food & Drink

A food village will be available through the weekend with BBQ and bar. With such a beautiful backdrop, it’s the perfect spot to grab a bite to eat or a pint and just relax as the sounds of bluegrass music fill the air. The food village and the museum café will offer a wide variety of high quality food options to suit all tastes with vegan and gluten free choices. Local publicans Bogans in association with the Pokertree Brewing Company will be serving up a wide range of beers, wines, spirits and soft drinks including a number of craft beers locally brewed by Pokertree.   

Campers & Caravans

If you really want to enter into the festival spirit, then a spot of camping should prove just the trick. Omagh Rugby Club are once again offering their nearby lands for festival goers to pitch up a tent or park their caravan or camper van for the weekend. A regular free shuttle bus service will ferry visitors between the museum and the camping grounds each day so you won’t even have to worry about finding a parking space.  

Camping/Motorhomes/Tents options/cost per pitch:3 Nights £402 Nights £301 Night £20Fee includes:Use of club facilities – kitchens, showers and toilets, Transfers to and from Folk Park by courtesy mini-coach, Access to Rugby Club members bar & live bluegrass music session on Saturday night at 11.30pm with Flats & Sharps. 

Click here to book your pitch or to make further enquiries by e-mail »  

ACCESS for All

People with Access Needs will be charged the daily adult/child prices shown above and Carers of People with Access Needs will be admitted free of charge.    

Tell me more

You can also friend us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to keep up to date with all the latest festival announcements and behind the scenes preparations.

Bluegrass Music Festival Sponsors

Image: