Inaugural music festival

Staff Writer
Published: 8/15/2019 8:24:48 AM

For one day this weekend, The Bartlett Farm in Montague will become Barbès, a legendary downtown Brooklyn, N.Y. performance space.

The 27 Center St. farm, with its wide-open meadows and winding rivers, will host a music festival called “Barbes in the Woods” for the first time on Saturday. The festival, named in honor of the New York venue, will feature a few of the performers that made Barbès what it is today. The Brooklyn music hall, while seating less than 100 people, holds nearly 1,000 performances each year, according to the festival’s website.

The farm is operated by Kathleen Lynch, Dean Garvin and their three children, the website says. The farm’s land abuts the Sawmill Conservation Area and is a five-minute walk from the Montague Book Mill. The festival includes a variety of musical flavors from around the world: Afrobeat, Balkan brass, psychedelic cumbia, Ethiopian groove, Afropop, gypsy swing, jazz/blues twang, klezmer, Brazilian samba and harder-to-define genres.

Barbes in the Woods’ inaugural lineup includes Slavic Soul Party,  Stephane Wrembel, Combo Chimbita, Big Lazy, and Anbessa Orchestra. There will also be other Brooklyn performers like the great Antibalas (celebrating its 20th afrobeat anniversary), Underground System, Alsarah & the Nubatones; and some local artists, Klezperanto and the Berkshire Bateria. 

In addition to music, there will be food trucks, craft breweries, pop-up theater performances, art installations and a scavenger hunt that traverses the twelve 12-acre farm. The festival is kid-friendly. Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets, lawn chairs, umbrellas and games to play in the farm’s field.

Music will start at 1 p.m. Saturday and will continue until 11 p.m. Tickets can be found online at and at the door on the day of the show.

Andy Castillo is features editor at the Greenfield Recorder. He can be reached at

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