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News & Press: E-News

October 2019 Newsletter

Tuesday, October 8, 2019  
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October 2019 Newsletter
Ethno USA Partnership Announced

FAI is proud to announce a new partnership with Belgium-based JM International (JMI), the world's largest youth-music non-profit organization with members in more than 60 countries. One of JMI’s signature programs is an Ethno music camp, a peer-to-peer learning approach for folk, world, and traditional music that began in Sweden in 1990. Ethno engages young musicians (ages 16-30) and is designed to facilitate and promote intercultural dialogue.

Ethno is already presented in over twenty countries, and this partnership marks the launch of Ethno USA (the first North American edition) to be held in late summer 2020 in the Midwest/Upper Appalachian region. FAI is now hiring a full-time Ethno Coordinator to work out of Kansas City as of November 1. To apply, please see the online job posting. To learn more about Ethno-World and the global folk music camp please visit the Ethno-World webpage.  

Lifetime Achievement Awards Nominees
The ballot for the Elaine Weissman Lifetime Achievement Awards has gone out to all members. These recognitions are presented each year during the International Folk Music Awards to a living recipient, a legacy recipient, and an organization or recognized academic. An archive of past honorees can be found online.

This year's nominees are: 

Living - BeauSoleil (avec Michael Doucet), Santiago Jimenez, Jr., Maria Muldaur 

Legacy - Mahalia Jackson, Allen Toussaint, Buckwheat Zydeco

Organization/Academic - Preservation Hall, Southern Folklife Collection, The Music Maker Relief Foundation. 

You must be an FAI member to vote. For more information about FAI membership and to become a member, go here

To vote, click the button below. Voting ends October 10. 
Canadian Folk Music Town Hall
On Saturday, September 28, a Town Hall was held at the 33rd Folk Music Ontario conference in Toronto, Canada. The open meeting was hosted by the boards of Folk Music Ontario (FMO), Folk Music Canada (FMC), the Canadian Folk Music Awards (CFMA), as well as representatives from FAI, to explore the possibility of consolidating into one new national organization while concurrently exploring options around a formal alliance with Folk Alliance International. 

The Town Hall came as a result of several meetings by the above organizations held earlier this year, followed by a survey of the Canadian folk music community circulated earlier this summer. The Town Hall was facilitated by longtime folk music community member Paul Mills. Attendees participated in group brainstorming sessions and were invited to share their thoughts and questions regarding the potential formation of a new national organization. Feedback was optimistic and mirrored much of the conversations to date. Each organization plans to reflect on the Town Hall responses in advance of future conversations. 
Register Now for The ExChange Australia! 
Registration is now open for The ExChange! This is a boutique three-day network and showcase conference for the Australia and New Zealand music industry taking place in Geelong from March 2 to 4, 2020. 

The focus of FAI's ExChange program is on cultural bridge-building, industry partnerships, professional development, networking, music export opportunities, and music sector strategy. Past editions were held in Ireland and Sweden.

FAI members receive a 10% discount on registration. Learn more and see the schedule of events by visiting The ExChange page
Cultural Equity Webinar 
Now available online – FAI added "An introduction to Cultural Equity" webinar to its online archive recently. The webinar, presented by Renaissance Management & Training Solutions was designed to facilitate cultural enrichment, understanding, growth, and proficiency through the presentation of terms, definitions, and concepts.

Public access to this online resource is free and found on FAI’s webinar resource page.
Conference Roundup 
Upcoming Deadlines

Hotel - ALMOST SOLD OUT!  Get your room now

Official Showcase Schedule Announced 
The 2020 Official Showcase Schedule is up! To see the schedule and to start planning which artist you would like to see click on the button below. 
Non-U.S. Attendees
Click here to learn more about the visa and access process if you will be coming to the conference from outside of the U.S. 
Production Volunteers Needed 
Have you ever worked behind the scenes doing stage management or helped with backline? If so, we need you. Earn your conference registration by volunteering to work on the production team. When signing up to volunteer, indicate your interest in production in the "Additional Information" section of the volunteer application and then list specific production-related skills in "Other Skills."
Connecting Folk 

Sometimes a simple conversation with someone who has been there can make all the difference in the world. First-time attendees are an integral part of the FAI community with over 1,000 attendees joining us for the first time in 2019. We are deeply invested in the new members of our community, and in 2020 we aim to do even more to ensure their success. If you have ever been to the conference, you may be able to help by becoming a guide for our first-timers. 

Guides are asked to make a 30-minute commitment in advance of the conference for each first-timer connection in the form of a call or meeting. FAI staff will be connecting Guides with First-Timers in the coming months.  Applications close on December 12, 2019.


View our sponsorship deck or contact Alex Mallett at
World Singing Day: October 19
Organizers of World Singing Day (WSD) invite you to submit short video clips of your own versions of the year's WSD Song-of-the-Year “Twist and Shout”. These may be shared on their Facebook and Instagram pages with a chance to be included in the global video.

If you have a performance that day, you are encouraged to lead a sing-along with your audience.  And if you feel so inclined, you can host a sing-along.  

To learn more about this event go to the World Singing Day website. 
Folk Charts 
Sign up for weekly Folk Chart updates
To support the FAI Folk Chart, you can donate here

NACC Chart member discount details and sign up -The discounted rate is a member benefit and payment will be processed on a recurring monthly basis.  
Welcome New Kansas City Folk Festival Coordinator
FAI is pleased to announce that Mikal Shapiro will take on the role of Kansas City Folk Festival (KCFF) Coordinator. Now entering its fifth year, KCFF is a public event that FAI is transitioning to full local administration in 2020. 

Mikal is a Kansas City-based musician, filmmaker, and community activist. She is the co-founder of a Sunday morning music program called River Trade Radio on 90.1FM KKFI Kansas City Community Radio where she has volunteered as a folk DJ since 2014. One of her film projects was the documentation of FAI’s 2017 Artist in Residence project featuring Rita Chiarelli and the Topeka Women’s prison singers. Mikal’s own album, "The Musical II," received local recognition on a "Best of the Decade" list in 2019. She was a member of the KCFF 2019 planning committee.

If you are interested in becoming part of the planning committee for the 2020 KCFF, you can email Mikal at 
Finest Folk Represented 
FAI was in attendance at both AMERICANAFEST® and the International Bluegrass Music Awards (IBMA) in September.  We hosted our Finest Folk series with Ordinary Elephant, Rose Cousins, Josh Halverson, Raye Zaragoza, and The Maes at AMERICANAFEST® and with Gina Furtado, Twisted Pine, Tellico, Ben Hunter & Joe Seamons, and The Dead South at IBMA.  
Social Media Shoutout 
In 2018, in collaboration with UNESCO for the International Year of Indigenous Languages, FAI invited Twin Flames as the Artist in Residence to create an original piece that speaks to the importance of language, especially as it relates to identity, culture, and history. Their song, “Human”, was recently nominated for two Native American Music Awards (NAMAs) and reached number one on the Indigenous Music Countdown.   

Attention Members! Do you have great news to share with us? Follow @FolkAlliance and tag us on social media and let us know about the notable moments in your career!

Don't forget to follow Folk Alliance International on social media and tag us in your photos! #FolkAlliance
Video Archive 
Each year FAI presents its Elaine Weissman Lifetime Achievement Awards (LAAs) to honor the cultural impact of a legendary Living, Legacy, and Organization/Academic folk music figures. In 1996, an LAA was presented to the legacy of Woody Guthrie.

You can see more video archives at FAI's Youtube channel
Woody Guthrie 1996 Legacy Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient
Thank you to our 2020 Conference Sponsors 
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