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  • 21 Oct 2020 11:44 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    This will be our third songwriting workshop - each one has had a different focus and outcome, first one was about intergenerational connections with Hackney Elders group, we then held a workshop with Hackney Windrush Generation and this time we are reaching out to NHS staff who live in the borough.

    Our festival for 2021 is called 'Staying Connected’ During 2020 we have all experienced a very traumatic year, for our artist members their industry has all but fallen away, but as creatives, we have found ways to deal with the emotion and stress through sharing music and connecting with fans on social media. We all joined in and cheered and clapped for our NHS heroes at the start of the pandemic and then when that stopped we didn’t forget that the work continued, the sick carried on being cared for and NHS workers have gone beyond the call of duty to keep us safe, we want to find a way to give back in the best way we know-how.

    We found with the past two workshops that it was a very cathartic experience for all, some saying they felt like they had been on holiday. Once the songs were performed, we could see how emotional it was for them and also from the feedback we found it had helped them to deal with some life trauma, experiences, and things they hadn’t been able to express before - the medium of 'song' was something that enabled them to share poetically without it being too heavy and still be meaningful to the listener. We now want to share this experience with NHS workers and hope we can make it another really powerful event for all involved.

    There will be 6 pairings - so 6 artist songwriters will be selected from our membership and then paired with 6 NHS staff from the borough of Hackney. Due to social distancing, we will carry out the workshop on Zoom through various group sessions and individual songwriting sessions. The NHS staff do not need to worry about performing the song as this will be done by the co-writer - the final songs will all be performed and released on YouTube.

    We feel this will be another moving event for all involved, for the NHS staff to be able to talk about their lives and experiences, see them transformed into songs and for our songwriters to experience writing songs on subjects that are not directly their own stories. If this idea sounds like something you would like to take part in then please apply below - spaces are very limited so please let us know why you think you should be chosen. You will need to demonstrate that you have songwriting experience, you will need to be able to write songs using a guitar and to be aware and sensitive to the fact that your partners in this process are not artists or songwriters. You will need to be able to be available to carry out this workshop in the first week on December 2020, then be able to perform and record your song ready for Youtube by the start of January 2021. We will in return give you a free three-day wristband for AmericanaFest UK and the UK Americana Awards ONLINE 26-28th January 2021, you will be given £150 towards expenses and time.


     you need to be logged in for this link to work  - Closes Thursday 29th Oct Midnight

  • 7 Oct 2020 10:29 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    As you know AmericanaFest UK 2021 will be a little different this time around  as we are going to take our festival online.  We want to make sure we host the best showcase festival we can to ensure you get the opportunity to play in front of industry and music fans.  We also want to showcase the best of emerging and established talent from our Americana communities from the UK and beyond

    There will be showcases from multiple guest hosts from across the USA, Canada and further afield, along side our UK showcases which will be happening in multiple formats but all streamed onto a specially designed online festival site, which members and music fans can buy wristbands to attend the three day event. Details on wristband purchases to follow soon.

    Due to the way our world now functions, setting plans in stone is quite hard as we just do not know what things will look like in January!  But If you want to apply to showcase then the basic thing you have to be able to commit to at this stage is being able to film a top quality, great sounding set from a venue or unique stage setting  - it may be that we discuss coming to venues in Hackney to film nearer the time but we can not confirm this yet.  So be open to this discussion happening at the point of us making the offers.


    If you are not yet a members then JOIN NOW and then log in and apply in the members area 

  • 29 Sep 2020 1:36 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Dear Members and Supporters, 

    What is it that the AMA-UK and its members do best? I feel it is that we create and sustain a community of artists, industry and fans to appreciate and grow a vibrant genre of music - live and recorded.

    For the past 5 years in January, we have gathered in Hackney, London, and we have learnt, laughed, and maybe cried (I know I have); we have celebrated and, most of all, we have connected. AmericanaFest UK has welcomed visitors from across the UK, EU, USA, Canada and Australia and it is the most joyous of weeks. It sets us up for the year ahead – the festivals, the stages, the tours, the releases….

    When we gathered this past January we had no idea that in just a few weeks time, these plans and aspirations for 2020 would be pulled right out from underneath us by a global pandemic. In the past seven months we have all suffered from the effects of lockdown, social distancing and everything that has come with it. We have also learnt, rested, and mourned – but we have adapted and kept on creating, because that is what we do in the sector... We create.

    We have deliberated - believe me, our board has met many times - and we have discussed and planned and changed our plans and replanned, each time a new regulation, an ease in lockdown, or a tightening of the rules has happened. We wanted to make sure we did the best possible thing for you, our members. So eventually we had to make a final decision. Now we have… and we could not be more excited for it.

    AmericanaFest UK 2021 will go ONLINE and we will STAY CONNECTED. Our community will gather and we will celebrate, discover and appreciate the artists and our community.

    • We will have showcases to give artists the opportunity to be seen and heard
    • We will host the awards to celebrate our talented artists and performers
    • We will hold a charity event to raise much needed money for mental health awareness
    • We will have online drop in parties and workshops from guests in the UK and from across the globe

    All of this will be over 3 days and evenings and all for one wristband (charity event will be a separate ticket)

    But most of all we shall gather and we shall connect and we shall plan because when we can come back to our stages and fields, it’s going to be the biggest party ever and we need to be ready! 

    So what happens now? 

    • Nominations process opens on Oct 1st  (Click here > for nomination process)
    • Voting opens on Nov 17th after the Launch event (read about voting here >)
    • Applications to showcase will open soon, so make sure you are receiving member emails. You have to be a member to apply to showcase (JOIN HERE >)

    More news will be reaching you on a regular basis over the next few weeks so get involved, encourage others to do so too - the bigger our community, the stronger we are and, when we are strong, we survive  and thrive!

    Be Kind, stay safe

    Stevie Smith 

  • 21 Sep 2020 5:11 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Sounds of Storytellers – Thirty Tigers

    This week Thirty Tigers is launching a campaign to champion the great storytelling artists from the UK online,  who are working musicians who live to play and play to live.

    With the pause on live music, artists and labels have taken to social platforms to promote their music. From livestreams to online festivals to guitar tutorials to Q&As, fans have been able to engage with their favourite artists in ways they might never have done before.   However the loss of the live performances and engagement has many consequences.  

    Also  the impact of the 'new normal' on physical sales is clearly felt by artists, so it's more important than ever for fans to support their favourite artists elsewhere in the digital space. To bring more fans to streaming platforms, Thirty Tigers has created the 'Sounds of Storytellers' playlist, featuring artists from our UK community as the initial emphasis.     Thirty Tigers has signed up 6 UK artists over the past two years and wants to encourage the music community to listen and follow the genre and to provide a starter platform to gain online fans more easily.    Having successfully been at the forefront of the digital sales development in the US for this community,  turning the attention to the UK and Europe starts with the homegrown artists. 

    The playlist launches this week and will be supported by an online #storytellers, #listentothestorytellers campaign to drive listenership and encourage follows. Be sure to listen and follow HERE, and if you or your artist has been featured then we encourage you to join the campaign, sharing the playlist and the hashtag. 

    The initial playlist includes songs from the following artists  : 

    Emily Barker

    Robert Vincent

    Ida Mae

    The Rails

    John Smith

    Black Eyed Dogs

    Lucy Rose

    Laura Marling

    Dean Owens

    Red Sky July

    Smith & Brewer


    Danni Nicholls

    Ferris & Sylvester

    Bears Den

    William The Conqueror


    Treetop Flyers 

    Teddy Thompson 

    Billy Bragg

    Wildwood Kim

    Laura Oakes 

    Danny & The Champions of The World 

    Curse of Lono

    Robert Plant 

    Megan O'Neill

  • 14 Sep 2020 11:39 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Thank you so much to The Brooklyn Americana Festival for having us open the festival 

    Thank you to the festival artistic director Jan Bell for selecting the lineup  Sons Of Owen, Hannah White, Izzie Walsh, The Blue Highways and Hollie Rogers.

    If you missed it, don't worry because luckily you can watch it again here ...

  • 27 Aug 2020 9:55 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    "We want to join in with the celebration of our national treasure Bob Harris OBE.  Bob has been on our radios and screens for a very long time, and this year he is celebrating 50 years in Broadcasting! Bob was instrumental is setting up the AMA-UK back in 2012 and he has presented the UK Americana awards for the past 5 years  - Bob Harris has always supported grassroots artists and this is why we have named the annual emerging artist award the 'Bob Harris Emerging Artist Award' - here are the five winners to date with a little message on what it means to them to have support from such a legend.  Congratulations Bob on your 50th anniversary  - here’s to many more to come."  Stevie Smith CEO AMA-UK

    "We want to join in with the celebration of our national treasure Bob Harris OBE.  Bob has been on our radios and screens for a very long time, and this year he is celebrating 50 years in Broadcasting! Bob was instrumental is setting up the AMA-UK back in 2012 and he has presented the UK Americana awards for the past 5 years  - Bob Harris has always supported grassroots artists and this is why we have named the annual emerging artist award the 'Bob Harris Emerging Artist Award' - here are the five winners to date with a little message on what it means to them to have support from such a legend.  Congratulations Bob on your 50th anniversary  - here’s to many more to come. " Stevie Smith CEO AMA-UK

    "Being the inaugural recipient of the AMAUK Bob Harris Emerging Artist Award meant everything to me, it still does. It's given me confidence to continue to push myself as an artist with the backing of such gargantuan name in music". Robert Vincent Emerging Artist winner 2016

    “It was such an honour for us as a band to receive  Bob Harris’ emerging artist award from AMA-UK back in 2017. We felt so much support from Bob during that time and we’re still so thankful for the ongoing encouragement that he has continued to express over the years since. We hope to always do Bob proud in our musical endeavours going forward.” Wildwood Kin  Emerging Artist winner 2017

    'It was the most overwhelming experience to be recognised by Bob with his emerging artist award at the AMA-UK Awards in 2018. Receiving the accolade in the early days of the band meant the world to us (it's Whispering Bob after-all, cmon!) and it helped crystallise in our minds that we were following the right path. Thank you Bob for believing in us! You’re a true legend. " The Wandering Hearts, Emerging Artist winner 2018

    Receiving the AMAUK Bob Harris Emerging Artist Award last year was one of the highlights of our combined musical careers. Nobody makes records in order to pick up an award but, getting the nod from one of the biggest names in British broadcasting history, a man who has unwittingly guided our musical tastes from the very beginning, will take some beating. Bob Harris is a legend, an inspiration and a national treasure and we are deeply humbled to have received his ultimate seal of approval." Curse Of Lono, Emerging Artist winner 2019

    "Being chosen as Bob’s Emerging Artist for the 2020 AMA-UK Americana Awards has been one of the biggest honours of our career. It’s a rare and incredible thing for someone who is held in such a high regard as Bob to support, nurture and champion new artists like ourselves. We were just so thrilled to be recognised by such a legend. Thank you Bob and your wonderful family for believing in us right from the start. And congratulations on half a century of shaping the face of music."  Ferris & Sylvester, Emerging Artist winner 2020

  • 19 Aug 2020 3:34 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Listen. The album made for lockdown

    After two years of twists, turns and a whole lot of hard graft we were absolutely ecstatic to finally be releasing our americana and mental health-inspired album, Listen, at a sold-out album launch. Little did we know that COVID-19 was lurking just around the corner and that it would throw our release, as well as those of many other musicians we know, into a tailspin. With a house full of merchandise, inclusive of our first-ever vinyl release, the performances and tours we had spent the time organising and curating started to slowly disappear from our much-loved live calendar; not an ideal situation when you have made the album of your career.

    Enter lockdown. You start to notice cracks in the walls that you were always too busy to see and before you know it, weeks have passed and there's been a tremendously unexpected shift deep within; you feel as though you have accomplished nothing and that everything is going wrong as you sit amidst the towering stacks of your greatest creation that is sitting aimlessly in the boxes it came in. It really is a bitter pill to swallow . . . until you shift that limiting paradigm.

    Live streaming! Something we had always been able to do yet never really ventured into. Of course, as musicians, we prefer performing to people who are in the same room as we are, however, everything we had to learn as quickly as we did seriously opened doors we never even realised were there. From bitrates and frame rates to streaming software and guerilla marketing, we were able to develop our knowledge in so many ways. Also, the positives that came from engaging with our audience in this way were just phenomenal! We managed to raise a significant amount of money to put back into our locality to support those who were most vulnerable and were able to provide a fun and entertaining way for people who were feeling isolated to be able to connect; it actually became less about our new album release and far more about positive mental health in our community.

    Giving priority to mental health is why we then decided to stop broadcasting live streams after a short and, fortunately, successful stint; we had been due a break and realised that we didn't always have to live up to the expectations that came from being a musician in a suddenly locked-down world and that we could use the time afforded to us to recoup. After a little discomfort and adjustment, we decided to take some time and spend it on 

    enjoying things we had forgotten we liked doing so much; cooking, painting, gardening, walking . . . creating only for ourselves. It was great and provided us with the mental space we needed to rest after many years of rigorous performing and promoting; it also really helped us refocus our attention towards applying the new skills learned to the next chapter of our musical journey.

    We have already made plans to continue engaging with our audience via our website, Facebook Live and Zoom; all of these platforms are so malleable and lend themselves very well to interactive video and conferencing projects and we look forward to creating more exclusive and exciting content going forward. We are also getting more of an opportunity to collaborate with others through webinars, panels, live streams and online performances . . . we have lots in store! Hopefully, you will be able to join us and experience the intention behind our music along the way; we are happy to know that it has already in some way helped so many people through this difficult and uncertain situation we are all living in. So, why not give it a 'Listen'?

    Thanks for reading everybody; we wish you a safe, happy and healthy journey!

    Lynzy & Vivienne
    The Coaltown Daisies

    Social Links


  • 10 Aug 2020 4:31 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    We are thrilled to be invited to work with the awesome Brooklyn Americana Music Festival this year for the first time. The festival takes place on September 10th-13th, due to Covid-19 the festival will be going digital from Brooklyn. All members are invited to submit their application and the festival organisers will select 4 acts to play a pre-recorded set to be broadcast as part of the digital festival. To apply you need to submit a song with a transatlantic theme that you will play as part of your set - this can be an existing original song or one you have written especially.


  • 2 Aug 2020 4:12 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    “I Get by with A Little Help From My Friends!” Lockdown Edition

    It goes without saying, we’re living in strange times, faced with many uncertainties. As we all are experiencing lockdown differently, I decided to create a project where I’d reach out to my friends and people I know from both university and the music industry and ask how they’re doing during these times. The project title is “I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends” As you’ll see and read in this article, as much as we’re in this together, we’re experiencing this period differently. To begin, however, I’d like to start by sharing my story, my experience as a student Raghad Jalal in lockdown.

    Raghad Jalal- ​Student

    “This lockdown has been in a way a blessing in disguise yet a challenge.

    As a Film and Photography student with a deep passion and interest in working in the music industry things still look uncertain. However, what has kept me sane during all, is being at home with my family and spending time outside in the garden

    enjoying the sunshine, while getting back in the kitchen again and practising new recipes while

    mastering old ones. Though it isn’t all dandy. There were days where it was hard to get out of bed and find motivation in what I was doing. Whether it was writing about music, editing or just doing anything. However, I continued to brush off the negativity and bit by bit I slowly got back in the groove while allowing myself time and taking things slow. Other than that, I organized live streams on Country in The UK [Live From The Couch] online video sessions [Live in The Studio-ish] while continuing writing articles. In the meantime, at the end of April, I began volunteering with NGO Libya in The UK remotely. As a Libyan, volunteering alongside the organization enabled me to get more in touch with my culture and learn more about my own country and its traditions. Now, I create cooking tutorials with the organization by cooking some of our traditional meals to share on the organization website. Other things I’m currently doing is catching up on some readings. Currently, I’m re-reading Holly Gleason’s ​Woman Walk The Line. Which consists of amazing essays written by talented female musicians, writers and journalists talking about important female voices in the world of Country and Americana music. Other than that, I’ve been using my time to capture moments of my day to day life with a B/W camera I borrowed from my university right before lockdown. Aside from all this, my friends have been a huge part in keeping my sanity too. So, if you managed to get this far! I hope you’ll enjoy the following stories from my friends.”

    My work: ​                  instagram @rtmumen1 

    Julian Baet- ​Employed

    “​I feel upset with the world, but not in a way where I constantly complain and actively get angry. Being upset has become a consistent state of mind, continually getting worse with news stories, stresses at work, and personal obstacles. Except when I'm playing Animal Crossing. The centre of my

    quarantine tales, I've been playing this game during my free time every day since March. When I get to play city planner, catch bugs with friends, and meet others during trades, I forget any ounce of anger or disdain. The world inside my handheld switch is my quarantine sanctuary.” Julian’s work: ​

    Kaan Cakanisik- ​Recent Graduate

    “​Although it may take time for things to revert to a sense of “normality”, I hope and believe that this situation will lead to positive change in terms of resilience and adapting to more varied work patterns. Hopefully,

    employers will make further efforts to prioritise employee wellbeing, and in turn, productivity to a greater extent than before. As a recent university graduate striving to form a prosperous career in film, any job, internship and travel prospects I had were made dormant for the last four months, and no one really knows what the future holds. It has been a time where I have been left to my own devices more than before. However, it has also compelled me, and hopefully, many more to realise the importance of acknowledging and appreciating the effort that they put in on the things day by day.”

    Kaan’s work:​

    Fahima (Fibi) Begum- ​Recent Graudate

    “​Quarantine has caused me as a student to move back home with my family. Even with furlough pay, I wasn't able to cover the payment of my rent. For a young queer woman more than my social freedom had been taken away. Forcing me back in the closet which is not somewhere I thought I'd

    ever be again. Therefore, I spend a lot of my time in my room, with nowhere to go and no one to socialise with, it's best I keep to myself. Through quarantine, I stopped having a reason to get out of bed in the mornings. So my sleep schedule is off. There's no job to go to, no jobs to apply for. Instead, I binge watch TV series, maybe work out a little, eat food and learn how to play an instrument. Lockdown just feels like a waiting game for when things will get better. In the meantime just do what you can to keep yourself sane in the world of 2020.”

    Fibi’s work:

    Jim Lauderdale- ​Musician

    “Usually, I’m on the road a lot and working on a new record and so without doing that, this downtime has made me realise how exhausted I have been for many years. Since off the road I’m able to be more diligent with my daily physical exercise. The main part of this is my Tai Chi, and Chi Kung

    practise while doing some walking and yoga, it has allowed me to get in a better place and helped me get through this period.

    Like everybody else, I don’t know what the future will be like for playing live. I have gone into a semi-musical hibernation period and I’m enjoying and rediscovering music from my past and hearing new music from other artists which have been inspiring. Over the last few weeks, songs melodies are coming to me again and I am writing in a different way without the self-imposed pressure that I usually put on myself. As introspective as things can be it is also making me realise the importance of getting outside of yourself. I just hope that we as an international human race we’ll get through this and that through this difficult period we will somehow work together to make this world better. That is a small ray of hope that I hold on to.”

    Jim Lauderdale’s work: ​

    Baylen Leonard- ​Radio Presenter

    “Like everyone I’ve found this whole period to be a bit of a rollercoaster but I’ve kinda settled into it now. I love being able to do my radio shows from home and I think in some ways it’s helped me form a better connection with listeners since most everyone was working from home initially. Regardless of whether I’ve had a good day or bad day, it’s always made better when my cat Charlene has a nap on my chest. It’s my ultimate mood booster.”

    Baylen Leonard’s Radio show: ​

    Sara Douga- ​Musician

    “This pandemic was shocking at first. I dove head first into a state of "blahh" which actually was a really nice break. I hung inside with my family and essentially did... nothing. However, once we began to realize this was going to be sticking around for more than a couple of weeks, my husband and I quickly rearranged our life, our home, and our schedules to be able to function from home. Since then, I have been uber-productive. Of course, I miss playing music, seeing fans, and being out in crowds, but there has been a huge gift that came with this pandemic; namely, FOCUS. I am grateful. Also, as a mother of two young children, I have loved being able to turn on and off so quickly. I can be totally a mom for a while and then in an instant be back in my little zen space and hard at work on my career. It's actually quite fabulous. I am ready for this to be over, however, I am grateful for what it has brought. Sending you all BIG LOVE. I

    hope to see you soon.”
    Sara Douga’s work: ​            instagram @saradouga

    Emily Hackett- ​Musician

    “I have been reading more than ever. I love waking up and grabbing my book before I do anything. The natural light in my house is great for reading in the morning. Finally, at last I had the time to start a vegetable garden. I had always admired people who had them and brought us veggies. It’s been so rewarding to watch these living things give back to us. Yes, the bed has been a place where we have spent more hours than we used to! Getting a solid 8 or more hours sleep is life-changing. Plus, we have a California King size bed, so why wouldn’t we want to have a lie in?!”

    Emily Hackett’s work: QLcl2N5cTJV1945Rg

    Frank Keith- ​Musician & PR

    “​So, quarantine has been an...interesting time for all of us. As a self-employed music publicist, I was already working from home full-time, so there wasn't a massive shock to my day-to-day routine. There was - and continues to be, of course - a significant downturn in the amount of work that came my way. Artists can't tour,

    so their budgets suddenly became razor-thin, or they decided to hold off on new releases with the world in such a state of uncertainty. No new releases no work for me. I haven't seen things drop to zero, and have managed to stay afloat with what business we have brought in, so I am 100% counting my blessings being able to continue to make a living through all of this. I realize there are many that aren't so lucky, and I often find myself struggling with a sort of "survivor's guilt" with that in mind.

    I live with my girlfriend and our cat (Winnie!) and we have, so far, managed to stay sane and keep each other company through quarantine. We love our apartment, which is renovated in an old school building. We're on the top floor with east-facing windows that let enough natural light in on a sunny day to the point that we needn't turn on any light fixtures until the sun goes down. I swear, we must have evolved to photosynthesize those UV rays on a daily basis - waking up to the sunrise is a beautiful thing, and if we're ever feeling glum we'll spend some time staring out over the eastern Atlanta treeline for a little mental reboot. It's magic.

    Another thing that has kept us sane is cooking every meal of the day. It's a form of therapy, especially after a long day of work. We were already ace home cooks, but we've used the spare time lost from eating out to sharpen our skills even further. Having said that, I can't wait to feed a

    large group of friends again when this is all over, let alone simply go out to our favorite bars and restaurants.

    Oh, and this goes without saying, but I can't wait to play a show again with my best friends / bandmates in GREAT PEACOCK.”

    Frank Keith’s work:
    Great Peakcock: ​
    Sweetheart PR -EVCxxUMaBossT14

    If you made it this far, thanks for your time reading this article. Who knows what the future holds so far in time. But, one thing for certain is to continue being kind, optimistic even when everything around is pessimistic. We’ll get through this, we’ll survive and we’ll all sing and dance again.

    Until Next time....

  • 23 Jul 2020 7:55 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Thank you to The English Folk Expo for hosting the Folk Talk conference today, with lots of brilliant panels and discussions about the folk music industry in the UK. 

    We are pleased to share this one with you as it features these wonderful Americana Artists both from the UK and USA, Kyshona Armstrong was nominated this year with Danni Nicholls for Song of the Year, Yola won both Album and Artist of the year awards and both Lady Nade and Bird of Chicago were showcase artists. 

    Its an incredibly important conversation that spans not just the folk, roots and Americana music scene but the whole industry - please watch and lets continue this discussion, you can comment below or in the members forum - We must and we can do more to make our music scene diverse and work on creating equality across the board.

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