Folk Roots Radio Episode 329: Hillside Festival 2017

Folk Roots Radio Episode 329 - Hillside Festival 2017

Episode 329 of Folk Roots Radio is all about the 2017 Hillside Festival taking place the weekend of July 14-16 at beautiful Guelph Lake, just outside Guelph, in Southern Ontario. Each year, Hillside – a true community festival, brings together a line-up that promises something for every taste, and constantly surprises. To learn more about this year’s festival, we caught up with festival artistic director Sam Baijal. We also feature a chat and a couple of live songs from Irish Mythen – an absolutely fabulous live performer, who’ll be making her Hillside debut this year – alongside music from other artists heading to the festival this time around. Listen to the episode and check out the playlist below.

During our interview, Hillside AD, Sam Baijal gave us a great insight into how he decides on the line-up each year.

Here’s what the Hillside Festival website has to say about this year’s programme:

“In keeping with the strong spirit Hillside has cultivated, we have programmed a line up of artists who are gifted and ambitious. Our 2017 line-up is packed with enablers and disrupters, enabling new ideas to come into consciousness and culture and disrupting the worn channels of thought and feeling upon which we rely. In one-way or another, so many of these artists challenge the status quo, whether through their musical or literary experimentation or their activism, be it political, environmental, race- or gender-based.” 

The 2017 Line-up:
The Aerialists, The Barr Brothers, Begonia, Big Brave, Billy Bragg (also with Joe Henry), The Blurry Pickers, Boogat, Las Cafeterias, Century Egg, Chastity, Charlotte Cornfield, Cœur de pirate, Ora Cogan, Common Deer, Communism, Dead Flowers, Carly Dow, Duchess Says, The Franklin Electric, Future Peers, Matt Haeck, Sarah Harmer, HIGHPARK, Jaunt, The Jerry Cans, Kacy & Clayton, Kaia Kater, Kasador, Kevin Breit & the Upper York Mandolin Quartet, Lisa LeBlanc, Lost Cousins, The Lowest of the Low, The Luyas, Mbongwana Star, Mt. Joy, Murder Murder, Irish Mythen, NEFE, New Canadian Global Music Orchestra, Lindi Ortega, Parsonsfield, Klô Pelgag, William Prince, Alejandra Ribera, Jenny Ritter, Xavier Rudd, DJ Shub, Rae Spoon, Lucas Stagg, Leonard Sumner, The Turbans, Lindy Vopnfjord, Weaves, Whoop-Szo, Lula Wiles and Charlotte Day Wilson.

You can learn more about the line up on the Hillside Festival website at

Hillside is about more than music. One of the greenest festivals in Canada, Hillside is also known for its workshops the great food that it serves, and a great selection of artisan venders.

This year there will be more than fifty different workshops, dance classes, drumming circles, discussion groups, and crafting sessions. Happy Houseplants, Grow Your Own Beer, Bellydancing, Stonecrafting, Improv and so much more! There’s also classes where you can learn to draw and journal.

And this year, exclusive to Hillside 2017, they’ll be raffling off a fabulous Taylor 410 guitar which will be signed by all of the 2017 performers – making it truly a one-of-a-kind item. The guitar has been kindly donated by Folkway Music in Waterloo, Ontario and is valued at $2,495.00.

You can follow this link to BUY TICKETS for the 2017 Hillside Festival. For more information about the festival check out their wonderful website at

And that’s all we have time for, this time around. Thanks to all the artists who share their music with us, and thank you for listening. We have a lot of great music and interviews to bring you on future shows. I hope you’ll join us!


You can listen to this episode again on Mixcloud by following the link below. You can also listen to episodes of Folk Roots Radio, on demand, via iTunes, Soundcloud, Stitcher and Tune-in Radio. (Click on the highlighted link to reach your chosen platform.)


Nicolas & The Iceni (Theme)
Lucy She Rises (Demo)
Roll Right (Pre-release, self)

The Barr Brothers
Even The Darkness Has Arms
Sleeping Operator (2014, Secret City Records) CDN

Jenny Ritter
Turn Your Thoughts
Raised By Wolves (2015, Fiddlehead Records) CDN

Kevin Breit
Dance With Delilah (feat. Rebecca Jenkins)
Ernesto & Delilah (2015, Poverty Playlist) CDN

The Jerry Cans
Northern Lights
Inuusiq (2016, Aakuluk Music) CDN

Deep Toque
Aerialists (2015, Fiddlehead Records) CDN

Interview: Sam Baijal, Artistic Director at Hillside Festival

Billy Bragg & Joe Henry
Gentle On My Mind
Shine A Light: Field Recordings From The Great American Railroad (2016, Cooking Vinyl)

Interview: Irish Mythen recorded at the Folk Music Ontario conference.

Irish Mythen
These Walls (Live)

Irish Mythen
Their Waltz (Live)

Lindi Ortega
Til The Goin’ Gets Gone
Til The Goin’ Gets Gone – EP (2017, Shadowbox Music) CDN

Carly Dow
Too Much To Go Back
Ingrained (2015, Self) CDN

Sarah Harmer
Escarpment Blues (Live)
At The Barricades Volume 1 (2007, Lake Ontario Waterkeeper) CDN

About the author


Host of Folk Roots Radio, Jan Hall started in Radio in 1993 at WEFT 90.1fm in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. Folk Roots Radio (formerly Royal City Rag) debuted on CFRU 93.3fm in August 2005 before developing into a syndicated radio show. As the host of Folk Roots Radio, Jan focuses on bringing new folk, roots and blues music and the voices of upcoming and independent artists to the airwaves. Jan is also a much sought after stage host and festival emcee. In 2019, Jan Hall received Folk Music Ontario's prestigious Estelle Klein Award for her contribution to Ontario's folk music community.

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