GoSee joins the many caravanners, motorhomers and those just tenting it who make their pilgrimage to Exhibition Park Canberra for the Easter long weekend for the National Folk Festival. Trailable accommodation used includes horse floats and even a trailer-sailer, after all, it is fitted out as a mobile home.
Vin Garbutt from Yorkshire, the home of Captain Cook as he proudly points out, displayed his enormous talent and wonderful voice but also had the audience in stitches with his witty banter and wicked sense of humour.
He is a bit concerned that the accent that James Cook would have brought out, like his own, has been somewhat changed. Keith Potger, ex Seeker and now brilliant solo artist displayed the depth of talent that took him and the Seekers to the top in the sixties.
Music and politics, two of the passions of Federal Environment and Arts Minister Peter Garrett, combined at Canberra's National Tally Room on the first night when the former Midnight Oil front man opened the 44th National Folk Festival (NFF).
He also presented folk music icon and original founder of Larrikin Records, Warren Fahey, with the Australia Council's prestigious Don Banks Music Award.
Keith Potger shows the folk festival the depth of his talent
The many market stalls, street musicians, performers and some 1500 volunteers workers, help make the festival one of Australias great annual attractions.
This was recognised over the past couple years with The National Folk Festival winning Canberra and Capital Region Tourism Awards for 2008 and 2009. In 2009 The National Folk Festival won the Australian Tourism Award in the Category of Festivals and events, in a tight field.
Each year features one state or territory. This year Tasmania is the featured state and emphasis is given to Tasmanian artists and culture.
Other greats on the program include Ted Egan, Eddi Reader, Cloudstreet any many different dancers, and performers from all over Australia and the world. Each year the festival gets bigger and this year has more than 20 venues running concurrently within the EPIC grounds. One of the great points of the National Folk Festival is that one ticket gets you access to all performances you can fit in over the four and a half day festival.
Some of the world's most skilled musicians, a drumming spectacular and a celebration of pure idiocy are among the highlights of the first day of the 44th annual National Folk Festival, which kicked off in Canberra last night
Talented boy from the Boro Vin Garbutt meets a fellow country man
Headline international performers include Patty Larkin from the USA who has been described as 'redefining the boundaries of folk-urban pop music' across her 25 year career, and LA-based Bob Malone who plays the National for the first time after performing with such greats as The Neville Brothers, The Rev Al Green and Boz Scaggs.
From Ireland comes the renowned Paddy Keenan, known at the 'Jimi Hendrix of the Uilleann pipes' (Irish elbow-blown bagpipes), while Scandinavian trio Faerd - influenced by jazz, world and rock music - perform as the highlight of their successful tour of Australias east coast.
Also from Europe is Italy's highly-acclaimed Beppe Gambetta who has performed with some of the true legend's of the folk world; while Andrew Cronshaw appears at the National on his first visit to Australia, accompanied by Canberra's own Ian Blake.
The cream of young and established Australian talent will be showcased with acts to watch out for including award-winning songwriter Abbie Cardwell, the cabaret-inspired 'theatrical pop' Emma Dean, and the remarkable voice talents of Mal Webb.
And Australia's talented indigenous performers are also be well represented with Dave Arden Band and Sally Dastey both featuring in the opening line-up.
Belly Dancers at the Folk Festival 2010
A key element of the National is the opportunity to participate and today's activities included a circus workshop, the intriguing 'How to destroy a folk song' and 'How to steal a song' as well as Indian dance, 'Push Me Pull You', bellydancing, tango and of course, the ever-popular Morris dancing.
The brand-new fringe festival, The Majestic, when it celebrated its gala opening at 7pm' in the Big Top on the centre arena.
The visually spectacular Taikoz, perform their extraordinary and dynamic Japanese drumming show in the huge Budawang venue from 8pm.
The award-winning National Folk Festival is at Exhibition Park (EPIC) in Canberra from 1-5 April and tickets are available at the gate - around 52,000 people from the Canberra region as well as interstate and overseas are expected to attend.
Caravanners and Motorhomers make the festival their own
Home is where you park it