Today is a video game: Vermont singer-songwriter returns to Waynesville

About six years ago, I moved from Upstate New York to Western North Carolina. I was, and remain, some 1,100 miles or so from all things familiar and beloved back in my native North Country. 

But, it was always the music of that place, and also of my time there, I would return to for comfort whenever that feeling of being homesick would rear its ugly head, usually on those nights when you’re simply alone on your front porch amid a sometimes-deafening silence. 

It ain’t over yet: Rodney Crowell reflects on life, role of the songwriter

Like a tumbleweed from his native Texas, Rodney Crowell has bounced and rolled along through life to wherever the four winds of the cosmos push him. 

In his 68 years on this earth, the singer-songwriter remains the fiery epitome of a troubadour, where truth is stranger than fiction, and the only way to make it through the day is to make sense of it through song and dance — with or without company, no matter. 

This must be the place: The only way to remember is to forget in a rhyme

There was a slight ringing in my ears leaving the show last Sunday evening at Ambrose West on Haywood Road in Asheville. The small, intimate venue had just busted at the seams with the heavy vibrations of San Diego-based Elektric Voodoo. 

‘The band that changes people’s lives’: WCU marching band a motivator for enrollment

The calendar had declared the start of fall two weeks prior, but that didn’t stop the sun from shining hot and high over Cullowhee Oct. 5, the last day of classes before fall break. For much of Western Carolina University’s student body, the heat probably didn’t matter — they’d already finished their last class and hit the road for a weeklong respite from academics. 

This great life we wish to attend

When one is in pursuit of their dreams, once-feared obstacles become golden opportunities, where you see what it will take to achieve what you need to do, in your own time, and you simply chip away until you overcome and overtake what it is you ultimately want, and need, to accomplish.

Blue collar dreams: Balsam Range wins big at IBMAs

Sitting on a bench in the lobby of the Raleigh Memorial Auditorium last Thursday evening, Marc Pruett waits quietly for the rest of his band, Balsam Range, to arrive for the International Bluegrass Music Association award show. 

A love so full it could send us all ways: A conversation with Gavin Rossdale

In the mid-1990s, just as the raucous nature of the grunge scene in the United States was hitting its peak, a wave of new rock acts from across the pond began to explode across the radio dial.

British groups like Radiohead, Blur, Oasis and The Verve were finally breaking into the mainstream, many after years of chipping away in the underground. And right at the forefront of this “seize and conquer” quest by these now legendary acts was, and remains, Bush. 

Like a river we grow as we roll

If change is the only constant in life, then Sanctum Sully is the epitome of change. 

Celebrating a decade together this summer, the Asheville-based band has always been hard to pindown in description, and in stage presence. Initially a rag-tag bluegrass and Appalachian music act, they’ve shed as many layers of their sound as they’ve conjured. The group has meandered along like a river through a deep holler, heading in whatever direction feels most comfortable and exciting at that moment in time. 

You’ve got a way all yours: A conversation with Jim Lauderdale

Legendary troubadour Jim Lauderdale is a longtime pillar of the fiercely independent singer-songwriter scene in Nashville. He’s always gone his own way, this melodic water witch, seamlessly following the ebb and flow of energy and inspiration, knowing exactly when and where to strike the ground in search of untapped creative waters. 

This must be the place: Pebbles and marbles like things on my mind

Well, 15 years ago this past weekend, I spontaneously bolted from Upstate New York straight to northern Maine to attend Phish’s “IT Festival.” 

A lifelong fan of the beloved jam-rock act, who was raised in the Champlain Valley of New York and Vermont (home base of the band), it was my first time seeing them in all their melodic glory. I was 18 years old that summer of 2003. Just graduated high school, spending the summer working front desk and maintenance at my aunt and uncle’s motel in downtown Lake Placid, New York. 

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