Festival Concert Artists

Jenn Butterworth and Laura-Beth Salter– folk mandolin and guitar duo

Jenn and Laura-Beth have each been a presence on the UK folk scene for a number of years. Although both originally from England, they were brought together by the close-knit and progressive Glasgow folk music community, spending lots of their time jamming an eclectic mix of folk music from across the globe, particularly the UK, Scandinavia and America. The years of playing together brought a deep affinity between the two artists; their rhythms lock tightly, their voices blend so closely that it’s often hard to tell them apart. 

Jenn Butterworth is one of the UK’s leading folk accompanists, and was awarded ‘Musician of the Year’ at the Scots Trad Music Awards, and nominated for the same category in the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards. Jenn is part of the folk super-group ‘Songs of Separation’ and tours extensively with acts such as Ross and Ali, Ryan Young and Kinnaris Quintet. 

Aaron Jonah Lewis- classic banjo with piano

Aaron Jonah Lewis has been elbow-deep in traditional American music since his first lessons at the age of five with Kentucky native Robert Oppelt. His concerts take audiences on a journey through the back roads of American old time and folk music, with detours through ragtime and early jazz.

Lewis has appeared on dozens of recordings from bluegrass and old time to traditional jazz, contemporary experimental and Turkish classical music projects. He has taught workshops at the the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow and at the English Folk Dance and Song Society in London. He also plays and teaches banjo, mandolin, and guitar and is currently based in Detroit.

photography for Maverick III, 2010

Alafia Ensemble– classical sextet with mandolinAlafia

Ensemble is made up of six musicians who met each other at the beginning of their studies at the Cologne Academy of Music and Dance. Each member has a passion for chamber music and advanced training in classical music. A common interest in a more experimental, open and self-determined form of music making led to the formation of the group. One of the goals of Alafia Ensemble is to build bridges between different genres of music and take forward the best of each musical “world”. The diverse background of the musicians and the extremely unusual instrumentation are some of the distinguishing features of the unique dynamic that Alafia Ensemble displays. The members of the ensemble are: Russian pianist and composer Olga Riazantceva-Schwarz,  German/ Palestinian violist Marina Eichberg, Venezuelan flutist, pianist and arranger/composer Leonardo Pedroza Cabrera, Scottish mandolinist Iain Lennon, Cypriot clarinetist Nikola Janjic and German/ Portuguese cellist Paulo Francke Negreiros. These musicians are having this musical adventure together as firm friends, which the audience notices at the latest when they see Alafia on stage!

Sasha Savaloni- classical guitar solo

Sasha has won numerous awards and prizes; including 1st Prize at the Sevilla International Guitar Competition (2018). In 2015 Sasha was also awarded the Second Prize, the Audience Award and Prize for the Best Performance of the Contemporary Work at the Miguel Llobet International Competition in Barcelona. 

He has performed as a soloist with orchestras such as the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and the European Union Youth Orchestra. He has also performed and given interviews for BBC Radio Scotland’s Classics Unwrapped programme.

Humblo– trio featuring Jacky Bastek (fingerstyle guitar+ double bass, drums)

A meeting with Humblo is a jump into a new story. After Fingerstyle guitarist and Singer-Songwriter Jacky Bastek has toured Europe on her own for the past 5 years she decided to look for fellow musicians to explore new ways to feature the acoustic guitar with her.
With the two Jazz musicians Yannik Tiemann on double bass and Felix Ambach on drums they developed an original band sound that focuses on the intimacy of solo-guitar music but expanded
on an improvising band. Jacky’s virtuous way of playing inspires the playful arrangements
that seem to be an extension of the guitar body.
The result isn’t restricted by boundaries in creativity or genre. The music combines elements of Folk, Jazz, Classical Music, Progressive Rock, Funk and Hip-Hop while each instruments seems to be rediscovered in its original role. On top of that there is Jacky’s vocals that guide the listener through existential short stories.

The Fountaineers- 4 piece bluegrass band

Glasgow-based Bluegrass band The Fountaineers formed during lockdown through a shared love of Bluegrass music. Callum MT (Mandolin), Rob Hart (Banjo), Jeri Foreman (Fiddle) and Michael Wright (Guitar) all had busy schedules prior to the initial lockdown of March 2020. As Scotland emerged form lockdown, the quartet met in green areas of Glasgow to jam. Members of the public loved the jams, and the group were named by an especially appreciative Glaswegian, whilst playing in the Kelvingrove fountain. 

The band have been ambitious with their time together, releasing their debut single “Old Ties & Companions” to Spotify in November last year. With an EP of original tunes and traditional Bluegrass standards set to be released later this year.