That was Moseley Folk 2022!

Supergrass announce their impending hiatus.
Jethro Tull, The Coral, Seasick Steve and more.
Janice Long tribute.

Moseley Folk & Arts Festival 2022.
Top: Comedian Lindsey Santoro; The Weather Station. Lower: Gaz from Supergrass; Kurt Vile.
All photos © Dave Freak 2022

Birmingham’s Moseley Folk and Arts Festival 2022 concluded on Sunday night (4 September) after a weekend of outstanding performances and unexpected surprises, including a marriage proposal, a belated wedding party, and a sudden announcement from Supergrass.

Britpop rockers Supergrass closed Friday night (2 September) with a spot-on hit-filled show. But in between such anthems as Moving, Alright, Pumping On Your Stereo and Caught By The Fuzz, singer Gaz Coombs announced that the band would be taking a break.

“This will be our last show for quite a long time,” he stated from the stage, before describing how the band reunited in 2019/2020, and now was a time to “put a pause on it.”

The band did make it to the Taylor Hawkins Wembley tribute concert the next day, performing three songs, but it appears Birmingham’s Moseley Folk and Arts Festival will be their last full set for the foreseeable future.

The 16th Moseley Folk also witnessed stand-out performances from Kurt Vile and The Violators, the hushed The Weather Station, hotly tipped Brum act Solar Eyes, TikTok shanty sensations The Longest Johns, and singer-songwriter George Boomsma, who was joined by Brum folk star Katherine Priddy (fresh from her appearance at the BBC Proms).

Other highlights included appearances from US five-piece Midlake, Jethro Tull, bluesman Seasick Steve – who proudly displayed his DIY guitars, created from hubcaps and number plates – and Scottish trio, Talisk, plus iconic ‘punk poet’ Dr John Cooper Clarke, and comedy siblings, Flo and Joan.

Louie Miles, the first recipient of the Janice Long Bursary, Hello You!, also took to the stage. The award was created by the festival in honour of the late broadcaster (and Moseley Folk MC) who sadly passed away in December. A presence at every festival, she was also honoured on Sunday by a special tribute featuring Ian Prowse (a songwriter Janice championed, and who played at her funeral).

Away from the music, the festival also boasted a belated wedding party, held over from lockdown, in which the entire group arrived in wedding attire (including the bride), and a surprise proposal, as John Joe proposed to Emily after arranging with Moseley Park and the festival to take a rowing boat out into the middle of tranquil pool (she said ‘yes’).

John Fell, Moseley Folk and Arts Festival Manager said: “Our 16th festival boasted a really varied mix of guests, from shanty singers The Longest Johns, to Poet Laureate Simon Armitage, artist Tat Vision and Brum historian Carl Chinn. CBeebies’ Nick Cope proved to be a hit with younger festival-goers – it’s great to see our family offer proving more and more popular – and we also welcomed collaborations with the Black Country Living Museum, The Glee Club and Birmingham Comedy Festival.”

Although the site was hit by torrential rain at 1am Sunday night, after the festival had concluded, the weather was predominantly dry.

“There was a great end-of-summer vibe all weekend and, despite the imminent threat of thunder storms all day Sunday, we only had a few passing light showers,” John added.

The 17th Moseley Folk and Arts Festival is set for Friday 1 to Sunday 3 September 2023. Early Bird tickets go on sale to subscribers and previous attendees on Friday 9 September 2022, and on general sale from Friday 16 September 2022. For more information, see: www.moseleyfolk.co.uk/tickets

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