Old Baby Mackerel

Old Baby Mackerel

Friday 24 May 2024
7:30 pm - 10:00 pm

Ashburton Arts Centre


Book here now: £15 full price • £10 or £7 if you prefer – please pay what you can*

Old Baby Mackerel plays high-energy, foot-stomping bluegrass featuring some of the UK’s best bluegrass musicians. Be prepared to be transported back in time to the early 20th century and across the Atlantic to North America where songs dramatized the small-town fascination with locomotion, religion and the veneration of whisky and bootleg liquor. Gathered around a single condenser microphone in the true bluegrass style, the sounds of banjo, guitar, mandolin, fiddle and double bass blend lightning-fast rhythm, virtuosic solos and evocative harmonies to get knees bouncing and elbows swinging.

In the last four years Old Baby Mackerel has been featured on three different BBC radio stations including 6 Music with Cerys Matthews, played Glastonbury Festival festival twice (2019 and 2022) and sold out venues across the UK including London’s Green Note, The Acorn in Penzance and Seaford Little Theatre in Sussex. In 2024 they completed a sold out tour of Dorset and have played headline slots at Purbeck (2022) and Priddy (2023) folk festivals, the Northern Irish, Cornish, Welsh, East Anglian and Swiss bluegrass festivals, at venues and festivals all over the UK and Ireland as well as Belgium, Austria, Germany, The Netherlands, Switzerland, Italy, Portugal and Thailand.”

Radio Appearances:
Bluegrass Special: American Beauty Live from Omagh Bluegrass Festival (from 15:57): https://on.soundcloud.com/uhhvX

BBC 6 Music by Cerys Matthews – Glastonbury festival session (penultimate track) 

BBC Radio Cornwall interview with David White: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0fprjkv

Articles in the Press:
Bluegrass beyond borders in Bluegrass Today, by Lee Zimmerman:

Newbury Today:

The New Stour & Avon:

“I’ve always got time for a bit of banjo” Cerys Matthews BBC 6 Music on playing Salty Dog Blues from the album Live at The Old Mill.

Available on iPlayer: BBC Music – Glastonbury, From The Fields, Cerys Matthews – A Joyous exploration: Glastonbury

“That’s the first bluegrass track I’ve played on Upload and I love it, so, so good!” Adam Crowther, BBC Radio Bristol

“A fine band of musicians and entertainers who would be at home playing in any holler in Appalachia. Real crowd pleasers with every tune and song they perform.” Richard Hurst, N. Ireland Bluegrass Music Festival Organiser

“Old Baby Mackerel hail from the thriving Bristol music scene and clearly love the more traditional aspects of the music, relishing the challenge of speedy playing and close harmonies around a central microphone. It needs musicians who are technically accomplished but also inventive and aware of their compadres at all times.[…] Standards such as Salty Dog Blues, Tennessee Waltz and Nine Pound Hammer rubbed along happily with newer numbers by Tony Rice, Ricky Scaggs and Townes van Zandt, alongside originals celebrating Bristol’s A roads and “one about a cat”. John Hartford’s Squirrel Hunters and Nellie Kane were particular highlights and the whole set flowed with relaxed charm and humour. The audience loved it.”
Trish Lee, Newbury Today https://www.newburytoday.co.uk/lifestyle/bluegrass-footstomper-kicks-off-ace-space-year-9236536/



See Access, Tickets & Finding Us for more about why there are three ticket prices, plus other useful info about coming to events at Ashburton Arts Centre: getting here, parking, loos, PA tickets, etc.