This must be the place: Chasing the American Dream of Breakfast

It’s the only way to eat breakfast. Two eggs, two slices of toast (cut into four triangular pieces), a side…
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Least I got the blues: Justin Townes Earle on songwriting, Van Zandt

When two-thirds of your full name encompasses two-thirds of arguably America’s greatest songwriters, it’s pretty apparent you’ll follow suit —…
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Cry sweet tears of joy, touch the sky

Right around the point of the song “Beginnings” when Chicago singer/keyboardist Robert Lamm belted out the lyrics, “Time passes much…
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Collecting the fire within: Rising string act to headline Sylva festival

It’s one thing to play bluegrass, mountain and old-time music. It’s another thing to dig deep into the rich, intricate…
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This must be the place: Never take those mountains for granted

Standing in the midst of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, one can’t help but feel refreshed, a return to…
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Aw, shucks: Haywood County crafter keeps heritage craft alive, vibrant

You’ve probably driven by the Red Barn Greenhouse & Garden Center on Dellwood Road between Maggie Valley and Waynesville a…
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This must be the place: Never forget what you made, what made you

It seems like a race against time. As a longtime arts and entertainment editor, I find myself in the backwoods…
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Got to keep on travelin’, movin’ on down the line: A conversation with Ronnie McCoury

The charm and allure of bluegrass music resides in its seamless ability to have one foot in the sacred, traditional…
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This must be the place: Head for the whirling sands of your soul

Standing atop an Outer Banks fishing trawler, I gazed across the high desert of northwestern Nevada.
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Greening Up the Mountains 2018

The 21st annual Greening Up the Mountains Festival is Saturday, April 28, in downtown Sylva. The festival includes more than…
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A hard life makes a good song: Jeremy Garrett of The Infamous Stringdusters

Hopping up on my truck tailgate one recent afternoon, fiddler/singer Jeremy Garrett gazed around the Spirit of the Suwannee Music…
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Roads that we abandon, and others that we take

A slight breeze awoke me from my slumber this past Saturday morning. Swaying in the hammock, I looked upward while…
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Halfway where: Ol’ Dirty Bathtub releases debut album

What started out simply as a creative outlet has now taken on a life of its own. Based out of…
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This must be the place: Every soul has a story, every story has a face

You can’t help but smile. Watching old clips of “On The Road” with Charles Kuralt, you find yourself in a…
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The Art of Garfunkel: Musical, pop culture icon to play WNC

In conversation, Art Garfunkel is as poignant and whimsical as his music. The strong, heartfelt emotion behind his thoughts and…
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This must be the place: I know I'll see you again in the long run

Somewhere around central South Carolina my mind began to drift. 
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In his own words: Pulitzer Prize winning playwright, Academy Award nominee Tony Kushner

Smoky Mountain News: When you look at American society today, what do you see? Tony Kushner: Oh, my god. [Laughs].…
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This must be the place: ‘And live the way I said I would, but somehow never did…’

As I awoke in my hammock, I could see the branches and leaves swaying above, sprinkling small bits of the…
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Hard times, come again no more: An evening with Scott Ainslie

Literally and figuratively, the idea of “listening” is somewhat of a lost art in our digital world. When a voice…
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This must be the place: There’s a reason you should care, seriously

Sitting in a chair on a front lawn late Sunday afternoon, the sun had already disappeared behind the mountains, a…
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New pictorial book on Cherokee released

Images of America: Cherokee, Anna Fariello’s new pictorial history book, will be presented during a special event at 6:30 p.m.…
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‘Let the freaks take back the night…’

The further you meander down the road of life, the more you come to realize just how haphazardly bumpy and…
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The gold in the mountain of our madness: A conversation with Wayne Coyne

For the last 35 years, the Flaming Lips have gone from a fringe rock act in Oklahoma to a highly-sought-after…
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This must be the place: ‘Stuck inside of Mobile with the Memphis blues again’

When you’re young — full of confusion about the ways and means of a “stable adulthood,” amid a hazy sense…
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Wind on the water, carry me home

When you simply mention the name Graham Nash, a multitude of sounds, images, movements and ideas flood your field-of-vision. You…
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This must be the place: ‘There’s no such thing as truth. Everyone has their own truth.’

Now, let’s get this out of the way. What happened to U.S. figure skater Nancy Kerrigan from within the social…
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On your plate, on the plateau: Chef Ken Naron of Canyon Kitchen

Though the culinary and agricultural history of Southern Appalachia is as vast and robust as the tall and rigorous mountains…
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This must be the place: ‘It’s herd behavior, it’s evolution, baby’

Cape Cod. Well, to be more specific, the small seaside town of Chatham, Massachusetts, on the southeastern coast of Cape…
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Soul insight: A conversation with Marcus King

You find yourself frozen. Watching and listening to The Marcus King Band onstage, your feet are stuck to the floor,…
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This must be the place: ‘I ain’t getting rich now but I’m gettin’ more than by’

The solidarity was evident. Sitting onstage this past Monday at Nantahala Brewing in Bryson City, I conducted another episode of…
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Ever since you left town: Louisville honky-tonk band rolls into Waynesville

For the better part of the last four years, Nick Dittmeier & The Sawdusters have zigzagged to and fro every…
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This must be the place: ‘And the morning came with bells on’

Hola. I’ve been saying that an awful lot while currently down here in Cancun, Mexico. Ten days of feet-in-the-sand with…
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This must be the place: WNC art councils: where do we stand?

It’s like pulling teeth. As your arts and entertainment editor for Western North Carolina, I find it difficult sometimes to…
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Meant to be lonesome: Maggie Valley Band launches new album, pushes ahead

The territory, and what comes with it. Being a traveling musician has always been a haphazard and often difficult position…
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Don’t stop the music: A conversation with Del McCoury

If there’s one singular force truly keeping the flame of Bill Monroe alive and kicking well into the 21st century,…
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This must be the place: ‘Set the gearshift for the high gear of your soul’

The time had come. Last Friday, right around noon, I received a message on Facebook. It was a fella looking…
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Eye of the beholder: Outdoor photographer shares love of the craft

Catch him if you can. For the last few years, Steve Yocom has made quite a name for himself as…
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This must be the place: ‘You know I’m such a fool for you’

They said it happens. When I was younger, and very much so in conversation nowadays, it was always said that…
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Between the lines tells the story: Waynesville woodworker carves into passion

When you are in the presence of the woodwork by Ben Grant, you find yourself captivated by the contours of…
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The end of silence: A conversation with Henry Rollins

He is a welcomed voice of reason in a planet seemingly gone mad. For the last four decades, Henry Rollins…
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This must be the place: ‘Should auld acquaintance be forgot…’

Nobody ever seems to know. New Year’s Eve is the same day every go around, and yet, why is it…
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House of my soul: A conversation with Langhorne Slim

The sound echoes a tone of inclusion and timelessness. When you listen to Langhorne Slim, you’re hearing something oddly familiar,…
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This must be the place: ‘Keep on rolling, my old buddy…’

Once the roads became sketchy, I became familiar with the territory.
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This must be the place: ‘Life being what it is…’

Ten years ago this week I left my native Upstate New York for my first journalism gig out of college…
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Latest GSMA musical release earns Grammy nod

The Great Smoky Mountains Association’s newest musical release, “Big Bend Killing: The Appalachian Ballad Tradition,” earned a Grammy nomination recently…
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This must be the place: ‘I have been all over but I can’t help feeling stuck…’

The crunching kept catching my attention. After finding a scarce parking space, it was a short, careful stroll from the…
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All American Made: A conversation with Margo Price

Catch her if you can. In the last two or so years, the name “Margo Price” has overtaken brightly lit…
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This must be the place: ‘I been a workin’ man dang near all my life…’

“I think not having the estate tax recognizes the people that are investing. As opposed to those that are just…
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