More American Folk Festival performers announced; bluegrass, gospel and Vietnamese artists included

Bluegrass band Blue Highway

Bluegrass band Blue Highway

Organizers of the American Folk Festival on the Bangor Waterfront announced on Friday afternoon the next five acts set for this year’s event, scheduled for Friday through Sunday this summer, Aug 22-24. They include bluegrass, Iranian music, Vietnamese music, gospel-infused r&b and the Mexican-Chicano genre of fandango.

The five new artists join previously announced artists including roots guitarist Bill Kirchen, Cajun band Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys, Quebecois group Bon Debarras, Adonis Puentes and the Voice of Cuba Orchestra, and the West African High Life Band.

The new artists include:

Blue Highway has a 20 year history of bluegrass instrumentals and vocals from five gifted songwriters with 11 critically acclaimed albums under their collective belt.  They are described as a seamlessly brilliant group sound that remains in the forefront of contemporary bluegrass music.
Ensemble Shanbehzadeh is a folk band from Iran who use percussion, neyanbᾱn (bagpipes), cymbals, flute, drums, and a goat’s horn called a boogh to create a melodic background for their Farsi lyrics.

Khac Chi

Khac Chi

Khac Chi, pictured at left, is a Vietnamese musical duo who play what they call their “bamboo music” around the U.S. and the world, in collaboration with orchestras and alone for audiences large and small, young and old. Their one of a kind, hand made instruments are used in traditional Vietnamese music, Vietnamese folk music and also in contemporary music.
Cambalache is a Chicano-Jarocho group of musicians based in East L.A. who engages its audience through participatory performances in the fandango style. The Son Jarocho style has been popular since the 1950s with Richie Valens and through today with groups such as Los Lobos.
The Jones Family Singers have been on the Austin, Texas Gospel music scene for three decades.  Their unique sound incorporates R&B and funk with songs of praise. The family recently performed in the Austin City Limits music festival and were featured in the film “Outside Industry: The Story of SXSW,” which was released in 2011.

For more information and to check back on more performer announcements in the coming months, visit

Emily Burnham

About Emily Burnham

Emily Burnham is a Maine native, UMaine graduate, proud Bangorian and a writer and editor for Bangor Metro Magazine, the Weekly and the Bangor Daily News, where she's worked since 2004. She reports on everything from local bands to local food to all the cool things going on in the Greater Bangor area. In her quest for stories, she's seen countless concerts and plays, been lobster fishing, interviewed celebrities, hung out with water buffalo and played in a ukulele orchestra. She's interested in everything that happens in Maine. Albums for review are accepted digitally only; please no CDs.