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Folk Tournament Preliminary

Every summer, our Sput friend Friday hosts a Prog Rock Tournament. I'm thinking of borrowing his concept to run a Folk Tournament. The way it would work is each participant would choose an album by a folk artist that has 25 or fewer votes on Sputnik. (And provide a link where people could listen to it, on YouTube, Spotify or bandcamp.) We'd start with 16 of them (or 8, if I can't get 16). During Round 1, I'd randomly pit one entry against another each week for the eight weeks, and entrants would listen to both and vote on which one they preferred. Round 2 (The Quarterfinals) would feature four matchups, all in a single week. Likewise, the Semi-Finals and the Finals would each take place in a single week. If you enter the tournament, you'd be making a commitment to participate in the voting each week (11 weeks in all). Is anyone interested? No more than one entry per artist. Below is my entry.
1Eliza Gilkyson

Gilkyson is an American folk artist based out of Austin, Texas. Secularia, her most recent LP, contains her musical musings on spirituality vs. religion.



The album is also available on spotify.
2Harrod and Funck


A 90s equivalent of Simon & Garfunkel, they each had a unique style of songwriting that blended sweetly together. This is probably my favorite folk album ever, and "Lion Song" is a perfect folk tune.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LmGFnf1heNc&list=PLATeyS5bPJiFL-rGWUSi2b9GgJiMHgQlX (also available on Spotify)
3Augie March
Sunset Studies


It's Chamber Folk/ Indie Folk. An Australian band, this was their debut, and had some cracking tracks.

4Jared Hart
Past Lives & Pass Lines


I fear he will not get very far in this tournament, cause his vocals are a little more than rough, but I love it so fuck it.

5Pepper Proud


Water has a nice variety of tones and emotions, and a bit of a new agey spiritual vibe with its references to nature and river spirits and themes of going with the flow and eschewing worry. an enchanting and calming listen, even when it goes into bittersweet territory like on the beautiful piano-and-voice closer. i feel like im lying under a tree or floating down a river in the summer when i listen to this.

6Clara Engel
The Bethlehem Tapes

bgillesp (with an assist from JustJoe)

she has material for days & a whopping one vote on one of her albums in this database

7Laura Gibson


i really don't know what constitutes a folk album, but i understand this one to be:

8Strand of Oaks
Leave Ruin


Leave Ruin https://strandofoaks.bandcamp.com/album/leave-ruin
9Matt Elliott
Farewell to All We Know

Northern Skylark

Do you believe in resurrection? You don't? Well, I did when I first heard this. This is the second coming of Leonard Cohen, I mused. He breathes throughout this album somehow. How very odd, how wonderful! It is probably not true, but damn it, he used to play a mean guitar, too. Enjoy!


or spotify


I've choosen this album because it is just a humble and enchanting release. I don't really think most of you would like it, since it is traditional (medieval) folk music. But for me, it is special, like a link to my ancient heritage~

11Gordon Bok
A Tune for November


My pick is on YouTube, I saw it there. He is old school sea shanty New England type stuff pretty cool.

12Clem Snide
Forever Just Beyond


As I'm obsessed with it right now, a new release:
13Fire On Fire
The Orchard


Very accessible spin on this sort of apocalyptic folk subgenre. Think a less evil sounding Comus.

On Spotify and Google Play.
14The Trees Community
Christ Tree


An early "freak folk" album mixing Christian liturgical music, psychedelia, and world music. This is probably the only album I could describe as simultaneously experimental harmonically (microtones in the Asian influences) and instrumentally (sitars, harps, weird percussion), yet quaintly old-fashion and homey (mainly their singing tone). The group's website states their influences "ranged from the Incredible String Band and Moody Blues to Indian Raga and Balinese Monkey Chant, from traditional American sacred folk music to Terry Riley, Steve Reich, Charles Ives, Bela Bartak and Claude Debussy."



do you like your folk medieval, polish and like you're in some kind of apocalyptic luddite church? jam hard or die
16Amigo the Devil
Everything Is Fine


Really fun and dark "Murderfolk" with a bluegrass twinge

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