Never one to shy away from speaking her mind, Laura Mina Mitic will always be the last one to tell you about herself. Instead you’ll hear about music, band mates, politics, touring and a deep reverence for humanity and the earth. You’ll hear the same on Carmanah’s first national release ‘Speak In Rhythms’, a modern eleven-song album that overflows with emotion, afterhours cool, groove and tantalizing hints of gritty vintage flavors that influence it’s modern sound.

At home on Vancouver Island, Carmanah have built a large and enthused fanbase, selling out bigger venues and opening stages for international acts like Ziggy Marley, Clinton Fearon, K.D. Lang, Moby and Shakey Graves. Off the island, on their travels both near and far, and consistent with their values, the band lessens their ecological footprint by fuelling their tour vehicle with used vegetable oil procured from restaurants along the way. Carmanah was mentioned as a “BC musician to watch out for” by Vancouver’s Daily Hive. The Zone 91.3’s Jon Williams has called her, “the Stevie Nicks of our generation.” Times-Colonist reviewer Mike Devlin touted her opening act for K.D. Lang as a, “solid six-song set highlighted by some impressive vocal runs and nifty acoustic guitar work. ”So, when presented with the opportunity, join in and be part of the experience. This is the beginning of a long journey, one that seeks to create a soundtrack for a new listener. This is music, this is love.

Carmanah will be performing on our Festival main stage (5 to 10 pm) Tuesday, July 30 as well as at a The Songwriters Circle in Southminster United Church later that evening (10:30 to midnight).

Cousin Harley


Vancouver, Canada

Music Style
Hot-rod rockabilly crossed with country blues and spiced up with bebop jazz.

Fun Facts

  • Known as the “Motorhead of Rockabilly” in Europe.
  • Pigat is a very versatile musician who is influenced by a wide-range of music, and performs in several bands to capture the essence of each genre. He amps it up in hot-rod rockabilly band Cousin Harley, winds down with mainly acoustic country blues and roots band Boxcar Campfire, and expresses his vintage jazz and bebop stylings in the Paul Pigat Trio.
  • His band called Cousin Harley also doubles as Pigat’s onstage alter ego, which is used to describe the wild persona he embodies during his live performances.

Influenced By
Les Paul, Jimmie Rivers, Danny Gatton, Blind Blake

What others are saying…

“This collection could fit into any of Quentin Tarantino’s films… if you get a chance to hear Cousin Harley, you will dig it!”
Monte Nordstrom, Cosmic Debris

“Cousin Harley holds court … belting out warp-speed rockabilly sounds with occasional surf and klesmer overtones… likely to awaken the sleeping reptile within us all.”
Ron Forbes Roberts, Monday Magazine

“You’d think I would have heard of somebody as good as Cousin Harley before this but this is my first encounter with his music and it couldn’t be more of a pleasure! …Top notch… a straight 10 out of 10.”
Gaby Maag-Bristol – Blue Suede News (USA)

“Paul Pigat and his rockabilly trio, Cousin Harley, play hot enough to raise sweat on a chunk of granite!”
Ron Forbes Roberts, Monday Magazine

Cousin Harley will be performing on our Festival main stage (5 to 10 pm) Tuesday, July 30 as well as at a The Songwriters Circle in Southminster United Church later that evening (10:30 to midnight).

Danny Michel

Danny Michel

The only good thing about NOT shopping in record stores like the good ol’ days is you won’t have to figure out what genre to look for Ontario’s Danny Michel under. If that WERE the case, you could try looking under, rock/pop, folk, world or (recently) even classical

Danny’s own self-described musical A.D.D. has kept his music fresh for decades now. Thoughtful lyrics & charming performances have earned him a devoted fan base, nominations for three Juno awardsThe Polaris Prize, and The CBC’s “Heart Of Gold”, and most recently winning the CFMA’s “Producer of the year” and “Oliver Schroer Pushing the Boundries” Awards.

After a 15 year love affair with the country of Belize Michel relocated there in 2011 to track down one of his favorite Belizean bands; The Garifuna Collective (A unique Afro-Amerindian cultural group) and convincing them to create an album together. That album (“Black Birds Are Dancing Over Me”) was called “One of the finest musical works of our time” By Billboard’s Larry Leblanc & landed a 3rd JUNO nomination (this time in the “World Music” category) and a sold out summer tour of North America with The Garifuna Collective.

While in Belize, Danny also founded the “Danny Michel Ocean Academy Fund” that helps raise scholarships for a small non-profit community high school. To date Danny & his fans have raised over $90,000.00 for the school.

In 2016 Danny returned from Belize with “Matadora”, his most deeply humanist album to date. This ten-song collection explores the environmentalist, pacifist, romanticist, archivist and space enthusiast in Danny.

Then it was off to the Arctic where Danny recorded “Khlebnikov”, (possibly the most northern album ever recorded/above 80°) aboard the legendary Soviet-era Russian ice-breaker, Kapitan Khlebnikov during an 18-day arctic expedition through the northwest passage. The project began when Danny was invited to join “Generator Arctic” by Canadian Astronaut Chris Hadfield who assembled a small group of scientists, photographers, writers and musician to capture a unique perspective of the north.

Danny Michel will be performing on our performing on our Festival main stage (5 to 10 pm) Tuesday, July 30 as well as at a The Songwriters Circle in Southminster United Church later that evening (10:30 to midnight).

Harry Manx & Special Guest Steve Marriner

“Mysticssippi” blues man Harry Manx has been called an “essential link” between the music of East and West, creating musical short stories that wed the tradition of the Blues with the depth of classical Indian ragas. He has created a unique sound that is hard to forget and deliciously addictive to listen to.

Harry forged his distinctive style by studying at the feet of the masters, first as a sound man in the blues clubs of Toronto during his formative years and then under a rigorous tutelage with Vishwa Mohan Bhatt in India. Bhatt is the inventor of the 20-stringed Mohan Veena, which has become Harry’s signature instrument.

When not touring worldwide Harry Manx makes his home on Saltspring Island, B.C.

Harry Manx will be headlining a special ticketed performance outside on the CASA stage at Rotary Square (7:00 to 10:00 pm) Wednesday, July 31.

Sofia Viola

Sofia Viola 2

There was no way Sofia Viola wasn’t going to end up a musician. The daughter of a famous Argentinian trumpeter and a dancer, Viola grew up in a home that lived and breathed music. She learned to play the 10-stringed ronroco, an Argentinian version of the charango, a diminutive Andean lute that traditionally uses a dried armadillo shell as the back of the soundbox and is a visual cross between a mandolin and a ukelele. As a teenager she began to study the theatre and (as you do) discovered rock music. The resulting musical influence was a stew of tango, bolero, rumba, pop and rock, a heady mix that would come to be delivered with Viola’s trademark sultry, edgy style.

A consummate road warrior and wild child, Viola toured fiercely across South America throughout her 20s, sometimes traveling alone, accumulating experiences that she turned into songs, but also occasionally in bands like the amusingly named Mahatma Dandys. Along the way, Viola became a masterful writer, composer and performer who has recorded four albums produced by South American musical heavy hitters like Ezequiel Borra and Andrés Mayo. Viola’s music is a raw, uninhibited shout of joy, a slither of come hither, a middle finger to mainstream and a joy to behold.

Biography by Shereen Samuels, courtesy of the Calgary Folk Music Festival

Sofia Viola will perform at our Songwriters Circle (10:30 to midnight) Tuesday, July 30 in Southminster United Church and will be one of Harry Manx special guests on the CASA stage (7:00 to 10:00 pm) Wednesday, July 31 in downtown Lethbridge.