This must be the place: Ode to Jeff Austin, ode to the power of music

The hardest part of being a journalist, and especially one whose core focus is music, is seeing those you were lucky enough to meet, interview and write about, pass away. 

Closer now and you will see what I mean: Peter Noone of Herman’s Hermits

The history of rock-n-roll music is as wide and deep as an ocean, each drop of water a band, song or feeling radiating a sense of self into the endless universe.

And within that massive and undulating history, no wave was larger than that of the British Invasion in the 1960s. Sparked by The Beatles appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show Feb. 9, 1964, the musical charge “across the pond” from England to the United States included the likes of The Rolling Stones, The Yardbirds, The Who, The Dave Clark Five, The Animals, The Hollies, The Kinks, The Zombies and Herman’s Hermits. 

Carry me back to the days I knew then: Rock Hall of Famer Denny Laine rolls through WNC

Simply put, singer/guitarist Denny Laine is one of those mystical characters you cross paths with almost serendipitously. 

He’s an old soul really, someone who’s seen and experienced the world over. But, Laine is also happy to share that wisdom with whoever will sit and chat for a moment. It’s a cosmically curious conversation between two souls playfully in search of the answer to the eternal question — what does it all mean? 

This must be the place: In a minute I’ll be free and we’ll be splashing in the sea

On Monday morning, as I woke up, packed and said goodbye to Bonnaroo for this year, I can say — in all honesty — that I’ve never had more gratitude in my life than at that moment in time. 

A closer look at WNC festivals

The proud communities that make up Western North Carolina were once mountain towns that played host to several successful blue-collar industries. These companies found a crucial, much-needed balance alongside the serene beauty and endless natural resources of our forests, rivers and wildlife.

Can’t keep a good man down: Banjo legend Raymond Fairchild on turning 80, a life in music

Though his fingers seemingly wrap around a walking cane more than his trusty banjo these days, Raymond Fairchild remains one of the finest musicians who ever picked up the five-string acoustic instrument — alive or six feet under. 

Performance Venues

Whole lotta highway (with a million miles to go): A conversation with Marty Stuart

When you find yourself in the presence of Marty Stuart, you find yourself in the presence of the entire living, breathing history of country and bluegrass music. 

Hailing from the small rural town of Philadelphia, Mississippi, the legendary singer/musician took off for the open road at age 12, performing with various groups throughout the Southeast. By the time he was 14, he had secured a position in bluegrass forefather Lester Flatt’s band. 

This must be the place: Out here in the fields, I fight for my meals

Sitting high up in the Bridgestone Arena in downtown Nashville last Thursday night, I couldn’t help but wonder what my Uncle Scott would think about all of this.

Out of sight ain’t out of mind: Grizzly Goat to kick off CMMF

Up-and-coming on the Americana/indie scene, Grizzly Goat was formed in Provo, Utah, and is now based in Knoxville, Tennessee. 

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