May 21st, the gang listed below will give a concert at the Floyd
Country Store, don't miss this opportunity to learn the root of American
Mountain Music. Stay at Mountain Song Inn we have one room available.
The show tells that Southwestern Virginia was a mixing bowl where an American music was created from ingredients brought there from many places after 1720, but primarily from Ulster in Ireland, the Rhine Valley of Germany, and was mixed with English and African sounds brought to the mountains by settlers who came westward from the Tidewater.
While the music performed on the tour will be largely American, some of the musicians are not. Cheick Hamala Diabete is a griot, a hereditary musician and historian, from Mali in West Africa. He plays an instrument that developed into the American banjo.
Dr. Michael “Mick” Moloney is the Irish musician and musicologist who created the famed Greenfields of America shows that set off the international revival of Irish music and dance.
Joey Abarta is a brilliant young Irish musician who recently stood the world of Irish music on its head by winning the challenging world championship of uilleann bagpiping at the tender age of 22.
Nine of the most respected musicians from Southwest Virginia will show how historic music from The Crooked Road reaches around the world.
Dale Jett is a powerful singer from Scott County, and a third generation member of the famous Carter Family.
Wayne Henderson is a guitarist from tiny Rugby in Grayson County who tours internationally, and is the most respected acoustic guitar maker on earth.
Sammy Shelor is a nationally respected bandleader, singer, and banjoist from the Meadows of Dan in Patrick County.
Molly Slemp is a teenaged singing Phnom, a keeper of ancient ballads reared in the coalfields of Wise County.
Kirk Sutphin is a brilliant fiddler, old-time banjoist, and keeper of the Round Peak string band style that in recent decades has spread to the world from the Virginia-North Carolina border.
Burl Rhea is an underground coal miner from Russell County, a drop-thumb banjoist and singer in the take-no-prisoners Cumberland Mountain style.
Linda Lay is a singer who lifts audiences out of their seats with a spellbinding emotional depth. A bassist with the precision of an atomic clock, she is Bristol-born, and a nationally respected performer.
Eddie Bond lives in the tiny New River village of Fries, but his mastery of the rich Round Peak string band style has created an audience for his music that stretches from New Zealand to the moors of Scotland.
Leigh Beamer has a way with instruments and a big voice. She recently celebrated her fifteenth birthday by learning two great old songs from her native Wythe County.
The tour is an outgrowth of the permanent exhibit, Roots of American Music, opening at the Blue Ridge Music Center, Milepost 213 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, near Galax, Virginia, on May 27. The exhibit was created by historians and musicologists guided by the National Council for the Traditional Arts and Blue Ridge Traditional Arts of Galax.
In development for four years, Ralph Applebaum Associates of New York, designers of the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C., designed the exhibit. The Blue Ridge Music Center complex is the largest physical expansion of the Parkway in 76 years.
The tour is funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, Heartwood, the Appalachian Regional Commission, the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, and The Crooked Road.