The Guardian festival blog: Womad festival review – polyphony and politics in global soundclash | Culture

‘Here’s a song from the 1920s – just before Led Zeppelin were formed,” announces Robert Plant as he leads his new semi-acoustic band Saving Grace into Cindy I’ll Marry You Someday. It’s late on Sunday night – Orbital are on the main stage, while Plant and singer Suzi Dian make a modest festival debut backed by drums, guitars, mandolin and banjo for a classy set of old favourites. They include Doc Watson’s Your Long Journey, Ray Charles’ stomping Leave My Woman Alone, Donovan’s Season of the Witch and finish with I Bid You Goodnight, in which they all huddle around one microphone. Low-key, but enormous fun.

Low-key fun ... Robert Plant at Womad.

Low-key fun … Robert Plant at Womad. Photograph: Judy Totton/Rex/Shutterstock

This was the 38th Womad, held in an increasingly crowded festival market made all the more difficult by visa restrictions. But there was still a varied global lineup – anything from Macha y El Bloque Depresivo’s…


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