Sometimes, people don’t know they love folk music until they hear it, Micki Perry said.
The tales of adventure, of heartbreak, of romance.
Of the West. Of the sea.
“It’s the people’s music. It’s personal. It’s a great way to express yourself and also tie into history and tradition,” said Perry, a performer and co-founder of Three Rivers Folklife Society.
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This weekend, the group is holding its annual Tumbleweed Music Festival. The event celebrates folk music — and bluegrass, Celtic, maritime and the like. It’s Sept. 4-6 at Howard Amon Park in Richland.
More than 120 acts from six states and British Columbia are to take part. Tumbleweed also includes a songwriting contest, a band scramble and more than 30 workshops.
The city of Richland is the co-sponsor.
The festival kicks off with a 6:30 p.m. concert Sept. 4 featuring young up-and-coming solo artists and groups, including singer-songwriter Abbi Hernandez, the rock band Roadlines, the indie folk rock group Adventure Dirt Team and Americana folk artist Badland Nomad.
The music continues Sept. 5, with acts spread across several outdoor stages and the Richland Community Center starting at 11 a.m. They range from father-daughter duo Rob and Sadie Newsom, to the “well-behaved” Celtic band Watch the Sky, to Spanaway Bay, which sings “songs from the rocky shores.”
Workshops on everything from bottleneck slide guitar to basic songwriting also will take place during the day.
A concert featuring the local Badger Mountain Dry Band, singer-songwriter Robyn Landis and the maritime music duo Pint & Dale is planned that evening at the North Stage. The winner of the festival’s songwriting contest also will perform during the 7 p.m. show.
On Sept. 6, dozens more acts are set to perform, and several workshops are planned. A contra dance is at 8 p.m. at the community center.
All Tumbleweed events are free, except the evening concert Sept. 5 and the contra dance Sept. 6. The concert is $10 for general admission and $8 for seniors and students. Children younger than 12 are admitted for free. The dance is $8 for adults and $5 for seniors and teens. Kids younger than 12 can get in free. Tickets are available at the door.
About 4,000 people are expected a day during the festival, which is in its 19th year.
Along with the music and workshops, arts and crafts activities for kids also are planned, and food vendors will be on hand.