We are completely thrilled to be returning to in-venue concerts in May, and equally thrilled to welcome SAM SWEENEY as our guest. Sam will perform a rare solo gig in the beautiful surroundings of CHRIST CHURCH DOWNEND on Friday 21st May in front of a COVID-safe and socially-distanced audience of 60. The concert is already SOLD OUT, but Sam will also feature in the new-look "an hour or so" a couple of days later, on the Sunday evening.

Nominated four times, and winner in 2015, of Musician Of The Year at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, Sam is a veteran of the mighty 11-piece, former and inaugural artistic director of the NATIONAL YOUTH FOLK ENSEMBLE, founder member of the acclaimed instrumental trio LEVERET, and "one of the defining English fiddle players of his generation" (Mark Radcliffe) at the forefront of the revival in English traditional music.

Sam has made two critically acclaimed solo albums (The Unfinished Violin and Unearth Repeat) and has also recorded and performed with THE FULL ENGLISHELIZA CARTHYJON BODEN & THE REMNANT KINGSFAY HIELDEMILY PORTMANMARTIN CARTHY, as well as his own critically acclaimed show Made In The Great War.

The concert will take place at CHRIST CHURCH DOWNEND on Friday 21st May 2021. Doors open at 7.30pm for a 7.45pm start. Please note that some of the things you're used to at Downend Folk Club will not be available at these concerts. There will be no bar, so you are invited to bring your own refreshments and take the debris away with you afterwards. There will also be no raffle. Finally, there won't be a support act at these events so they'll likely finish a little earlier than pre-pandemic. We will, of course, hope to re-instate these things if and when we're able to. You will need to bring a face-mask and your own hand-sanitiser. There are toilets but access is limited... so please try to go before you arrive!




As part of our plan moving forward, we will also be sitting down for a cuppa and a bit of a natter with SAM SWEENEY when he visits us for the concert, as we continue with our hugely successful "an hour or so" online series in a slightly different way.

Your questions are invited but they must be submitted in advance... you can do that via email, Facebook message, Twitter, however you like. We'll select the best ones and put them to Sam, as well as finding out a bit more about his past and his plans for the future. We'll film a handful of the tunes Sam plays during the concert and stitch them together.

We'll then stream the resulting chat and tunes on Sunday 23rd May 2021, at 8.00pm on our FACEBOOK page and YOUTUBE channel. Do make sure that you've liked/followed/suscribed! We'll all be hanging out in the comments as we have for the last year, so we hope that, if you're one of our friends from further afield, or you're not ready to come back to in-venue gigs at the moment, you'll join us and continue to build the lovely online community that has formed around these events. But if you can't join us live, don't worry... it will be available to view for two weeks afterwards.

As always, these events are free to attend, but we will continue with an online tip-jar, which you can find via the link below. This will be treated as extra ticket money, so will directly benefit the artist. Please give generously if you can.

We'll continue these new monthly "an hour or so" sessions as long as people are watching and donating!