Rio Mira kicks off the Sisters Folk Festival Free Summer Concert Series at Fir Street Park.
photo by Miguel Alvear
Rio Mira kicks off the Sisters Folk Festival Free Summer Concert Series at Fir Street Park. photo by Miguel Alvear
Sisters Folk Festival has announced the lineup for the 2019 Free Summer Concert Series at Fir Street Park in downtown Sisters.

The concert performances, sponsored by First Interstate Bank, are Thursday, July 18 with Rio Mira, a collective of folk musicians from Ecuador and Columbia; Thursday, August 1 with bluegrass powerhouse Town Mountain; and Wednesday, August 21 with SFF fan favorites Freddy & Francine.

Opening the series on July 18, Rio Mira bridges borders to reaffirm traditions. This unique collective of folk musicians celebrates a shared musical heritage. Fronted by singer Karla Kanora, Rio Mira is a recording collaboration between artists from neighboring Ecuador and Colombia. Their debut album, released on a ZZK’s sub label AYA Records, is produced by Iván Benavides (involved in Latin Grammy-winning groups like Choq Quib Town and Gaiteros de San Jacinto) and Ivis Flies (producer of Latin Grammy-winning social heritage project De Taitas y Mamas) and is guided by the distinctive percussive tones of the marimba.

This socially conscious project, based out of the coastal town of Esmeraldas in Ecuador and the city of Cali in Colombia, is becoming a symbol of Afro-Pacific identity. The story of the marimba is closely intertwined with the history of rebel slaves — known as maroons — who have made the region their home from the early 16th century onward. There is a celebratory feeling to this music. In 2015, UNESCO declared the marimba music of South Pacific Colombia and Esmeraldas Province, Ecuador to be Intangible Cultural Heritage. Taking its name from the river which runs from Ecuador into Colombia, the band Rio Mira is living proof of the rich history of South America’s northwesterly Pacific coast.

On Thursday, August 1, the bluegrass group Town Mountain will perform, and on Wednesday, August 21, Freddy & Francine will close out the summer series.  

For SFF 2019 Summer Concert Series and artist information, and for information on 2019 Festival tickets, artists, schedules and becoming an SFF volunteer, visit sistersfolkfestival.org. For the summer series SFF encourages patrons to bring blankets and low-back chairs, as seating is not provided. All shows start at 6:30 p.m., are free and open to the public, and picnics are encouraged. The Fir Street Park venue is located in downtown Sisters at 150 N. Fir St. For more information contact info@sistersfolkfestival.org or call 541-549-4979.