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On Sunday, August 11, from 4:00 to 6:30 pm Eastern, in the intimate 70-seat theatre of St. Benedict’s Brew Works in Ferdinand, enjoy some of southern Indiana’s best singer-songwriters sharing their original works. The fifth-annual Ferdinand Folk Festival Singer-Songwriter Showcase is also a benefit concert to help keep the festival free. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for those under 18. To reserve a seat, call or text 812-631-2856.

From a juried competition, these are the performers (alphabetical order) selected for Sunday’s showcase:

The Burch Brothers, Dubois, IN, and Louisville, KY

For over 40 years, Eddie and Rick Burch have played music together with the band, The Burgoo Kings, and in recent years have begun performing as a duo. Eddie was first inspired to learn guitar and write songs when, at age 18, he heard Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are A’ Changin’” album. “Creating art with social consciousness was my first goal and remains an important element in my life,” he states. Rick, a guitarist, was first inspired by Duane Allman, Hendrix, Clapton, and others. He is also a fan of the acoustic guitar work of Bruce Cockburn, and Eddie has been likewise moved by Cockburn’s songwriting. “We are thrilled to have been invited to perform at the festival headlined by a musical hero we so admire.” Photo ID: l to r, Rick Burch, Eddie Burch


The Burma Shaver(s), Evansville, IN, and Ashley, IL

Dubbed an “original, new-wave, acoustic, eccentric, Americana, folk-music duo”, The Burma Shaver(s) are the 2017 marriage of the diverse musical styling of  Lonesome Steve Fowler and Jerry Wilson. “If the shadows are just right,” states Fowler, “we can oft times be spotted rehearsing along the banks of the Wabash River (the half way point between our hometowns) sharing a cane fishing pole and a daydream of playing our music for anyone and everyone who will lend an ear–sharing tall tales, short stories, and poems through lyrics, melodies, sentimental longings, and wistful affection for the past.” Photo ID: l to r, Steve Fowler, Jerry Wilson

Katie Didit, Louisville, KY

Katie Didit has spent most of her life immersed in the world of Appalachian music, studying traditional mountain music in Big Stone Gap, Virginia, at Mountain Empire College. Katie’s vintage flare is paired with her passion for lyrical composition, each line laden with intention, leaving her listeners feeling as if they just finished their new favorite book. “My motivation for playing music boils down to one simple word: connection,” she states. “Playing original music derived from personal experiences creates a vulnerability that I can share with those willing to listen. There is no better way to connect with people than to share your deepest feelings through song.” 

Maris Fish, Bloomington, IN

Singer and guitar player Maris Fish, one of seven children in her family, currently majors in elementary education. “I have a passion for human rights and Spanish,” she states. She plays music to better understand herself and to build greater self-confidence. “When I grew unconfident in my music and began letting go of the things I loved, music helped bring that time to an end.”

Laura Rose and the Briars, Evansville, IN

Laura Rose and the Briars is a new group “starting fresh-out-of-the-gate”. Composed of sisters Laura Rose D’Alto, Amelia Madi, and soul-sister Emily Durchholz, they perform original songs with an earthy, acoustic drive and a starry-eyed perspective. “Each of us has a background in music, theatre, dance, any and all things in the performing arts,” states Laura Rose. “When we make music together, we get to tell stories that mean something to ourselves and our listeners. There is no greater joy than being a storyteller.” Photo ID: l to r, Amelia Madi, Laura Rose D’Alto, and Emily Durchholz

Jacob McDaniel, New Salisbury, IN

Returning from last year’s Showcase, Jacob McDaniel acquired a love of vintage folk and blues music at a young age, starting guitar lessons at age 11 after inheriting a Guild acoustic guitar from his deceased uncle. Releasing his second solo album, Seven Birds Blue, in May 2019, McDaniel has been inspired by the beauty and authenticity of the music of Bob Dylan, Cat Stephens, and The Allman Brothers Band. “I draw inspiration from the world around me,” he says. “I then turn snippets of rhymes, random thoughts, and song titles into full compositions.”

Redwood Preservation Society, Evansville, IN

In the Redwood Preservation Society, David Warren writes the songs, plays finger-style guitar, and provides most of the lead vocals. “Michael Flake is our guitar escort, who tastefully decorates our music with what we like to call the Flake Effect,” states Warren. Jennifer Vela, their “rose among the thorns”, blends her vocal harmonies around David’s soulful mash “like bourbon and honey”. “We craft our songs with our hearts on our sleeves,” Warren continues. “Most of our songs are about love, loneliness, or the space between the two. We are either missing the one who slipped away or holding them tightly in our arms. We hope that our music is a comfort to the weary and that maybe you can find yourself swaying along a bit.” Photo ID: l to r, David Warren, Jennifer Vela, Michael Flake

Clayton N. Schroeder, Bloomington, IN

Returning for his third Singer-Songwriter Showcase, Clayton N. Schroeder is a full-time husband, father of two, and seasonal songwriter. “I pick up my guitar when I hear Ferdinand calling, and then I let it go into hibernation after the last campfire in the fall,” states Schroeder. “When it comes to songwriting, I’m not a weekend warrior–I’m a seasonal samurai.”  A storyteller at heart, his homegrown, Hoosier folk songs come from his life, his jobs, and his friends.  “As they say, ‘Write what you know.'”

To further honor their achievement–to kick off the 10th annual Ferdinand Folk Festival–the performers will be featured at 11:00 am Eastern on Saturday, September 21, on the NextEra Energy Main Stage in 18th Street Park. They will also be invited to perform a short set on the Kyana Woodstock Market Stage during the afternoon of the festival. The artists may sell cds and merch at both events.

At Sunday’s showcase, St. Benedict’s Brew Works will be open from noon to 8 pm Eastern, and will serve craft beer and artisan root beer, handmade pizza, soft pretzels, veggie burgers, and more. Visit for more info.

The Ferdinand Folk Festival is a free, family and environmentally friendly festival featuring internationally, nationally, and regionally touring singer-songwriters on the main stage, dozens of artisan, food, and environmental/wellness booths, aerial dancers, giant renewable energy puppets, many fun, educational music and nature programs for children, entertaining and informative Tent Talks, workshops for all ages, and much more. Patrons may learn more about the event on Facebook and find updates in the weeks ahead at Co-presenting sponsors of the festival are Best Home Furnishings and MasterBrand Cabinets. The Main Stage sponsor is NextEra Energy Resources. The Market Stage is sponsored by Kyana Woodstock.

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