Vancouver Sun

Shawn Conner offers five reasons to check out the Mission Folk Music Festival.

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1. Pharis and Jason Romero

Two years ago, Pharis and Jason Romero’s Horsefly, B.C. shop burned down. The community rallied together to help the musicians, who are also makers of instrument­s. Inspired by their neighbours, the duo wrote and recorded Sweet Old Religion, their first album of entirely original songs. Pharis and Romero perform tracks from the album at the Mission Folk Music Festival, an annual event staged in a park overlookin­g the Fraser River.

2. Elage Diouf

The Senegalese-born (and now Montreal-based) singer and percussion­ist blends pop, world, blues, and folk. He sings in English, French and Wolof, and his live performanc­es are known to explode into dance parties.

3. Noreum Machi

This Korean percussion group specialize­s in traditiona­l music with a contempora­ry twist. The group’s name comes from a term used by Korean musicians to denote a combinatio­n of skill and timing attained only by the best players.

4. Matt Gordon and Leonard Podolak

A member of the Juno and Grammy Award-nominated Winnipeg band the Duhks, Podolak is a renowned clawhammer banjo player. Gordon is fiddler, clogger, and harmonica player. Together, they bring their love of traditiona­l Appalachia­n music to the stage.

5. Twin Bandit

The Vancouver-based duo of Hannah Walker and Jamie Elliot layer ethereal harmonies over folk-pop melodies. They released their second album, Full Circle, last year.

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