SFF Creative Director Brad Tisdel and artist Dennis McGregor celebrated the unveiling of the 2019 poster. photo by Jodi Schneider
SFF Creative Director Brad Tisdel and artist Dennis McGregor celebrated the unveiling of the 2019 poster. photo by Jodi Schneider
Music and art enthusiasts gathered at Sisters Gallery & Frame Shop last week for the official unveiling of the 2019 Sisters Folk Festival poster featuring the original artwork of Dennis McGregor, local artist, singer/songwriter, and author.

This is the 19th year that McGregor has been commissioned to paint original artwork for the annual SFF poster that attracts thousands of people to the three-day event.

Around 6 p.m. the poster was revealed, and folks couldn’t have been more thrilled when they gazed upon “Ripples,” artwork depicting a man in a canoe holding a guitar in a bright blue lake as ripples expand across the water.

McGregor said, “Like all projects it starts with a blank canvas. And this year my first thought about the poster was what’s not like fire, and I thought of water, and I thought about someone relaxing in a canoe with a guitar. That seemed to resonate and feel pretty good to me. Then I thought about Blue Lake and Caldera, the home of our songwriting camp, so I painted Blue Lake with Caldera in the background.”

“It’s an amazing place where lives are affected and influenced, and there’s an inspiration factor that happens out there and it ripples out and radiates and touches the lives of many, many people.”

McGregor set the tone for the 2019 festival with the poster by capturing the spirit of the event and the role of SFF in the community.

Helen Schmidling, Sisters Art Association founder and evening co-host, noted, “It’s a refreshing change. But Dennis always comes up with something new and different and this is lively and bright.”

Debbie Newport, fund development director for Circle of Friends, added, “I love Dennis’ description of the ripple effect and that the art brings it out for us to see.”

The 2019 SFF poster wasn’t the only thing revealed Tuesday night at Sisters Gallery & Frame Shop: Twenty of the 2019 confirmed musical lineup were printed on the poster for folks to check out.

“Artistically we want to be as broad ranging of excellent talent and I see a sense of discovery in that we don’t have to book the biggest bands but some of the best in songwriters and artists,” said SFF Creative Director Brad Tisdel. “It’s a really brilliant broad swath of Americana and acoustic music. As we grow and develop, we want to have things right down to the center of the plate, but we also want to push the fringe and the edges a little bit with music that you’ve never seen.

 “Our headliner that we’ve announced is Bruce Cockburn, a fantastic Canadian songwriter. And the East Pointers are coming back. We have The Suitcase Junket, a very interesting songwriter. He is kind of a one-man band, but is so much more. The Brother Brothers are sibling harmony twins that play violin, cello, and guitar and sound a little like Simon and Garfunkel. There’s Alex Cuba from Cuba and he is living in Vancouver, British Columbia, and we just saw him in Montreal. He sings in Spanish and English and he’s going to be at our songwriting camp this year.”

Adding to that is Ron Artis II & the Truth, Le Vent Du Nord, Cedric Burnside, The Hamiltones and more.

SFF will book another 20 to 25 acts, and the final lineup will be released by mid-June.