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JamInTheTrees_11x17_2017.jpg
The 2nd Annual Jam in The Trees Announced Initial Lineup:

Acoustic Syndicate, Peter Rowan, Larry Keel, Tim O’Brien,
Jim Lauderdale, Underhill Rose, Ken Tizzard


Fri-Sat Aug 25-26, 2017 at Pisgah Brewing Company in Black Mountain, NC
150 Eastside Drive, Black Mountain, NC 28711 | Phone 828.669.0190
Tickets:  www.eventbrite.com/e/jam-in-the-trees-tickets-29283448583

ASHEVILLE, NC — The 2nd Annual Jam In The Trees is thrilled to welcome Acoustic Syndicate, Peter Rowan, Larry Keel, Tim O’Brien, Jim Lauderdale, Underhill Rose, Ken Tizzard to the stage for the 2017 event taking place Friday and Saturday, August 25-26th at Pisgah Brewing Company in Black Mountain, NC. More artists TBA!

Early Bird Tickets available while supplies last. VIP tickets are available for $100 and include Meet & Greets with the bands, a guided brewery tour and tasting, preferred parking, a commemorative event poster and more! Doors open at 7pm on Friday for shows on the indoor stage. Gates open Saturday at 12pm, with music starting at 1pm throughout the day until 11pm on the beautiful Pisgah Brewing Outdoor Stage, followed by an “After Hours Jam” on the indoor stage. Hotel and shuttle information coming soon. Stay tuned to the festival’s new website www.jaminthetrees.com for more information and updates.

JITT is a benefit for Wild Forests & Fauna (WildFF) and last year’s inaugural event raised $5000 to protect, restore and support threatened forests and wildlife in Western North Carolina. Relive some of the wonderful moments of 2016 through photos of the event by David Simchock Photography at www.frontrowfocus.com.

“At WildFF, our Big Tree Project that leverages outreach education and reforestation to protect forests in Western North Carolina and around the globe,” WildFF’s Executive Director Benjamin Colvin says, “Since JITT, the Big Tree Project has grown and has even sparked a relationship with ABTech and local company ArborZen to restore a razed site with over 500 native trees. We are thrilled to be a part of this and can not wait for Jam in the Trees 2017!”

“Jam in the Trees fit like a glove in our beautiful amphitheater, and we couldn’t be more excited to partner with this organization again in support of our most precious forests and natural resources in 2017. It’s a real win-win!” says Benton Wharton, Events/PR Director for Pisgah Brewing.

JITT is now accepting art vendor applications for Jam In The Trees 2017. JITT is booking non-food vendors only; if you are a food vendor interested in being a part of JITT, please contact Pisgah Brewing directly. Here is the link to the Art Vendor Application: http://bit.ly/JITT_ArtVendorApp_2017.

“We are incredibly excited to be working in 2017 in support of our mission of philanthropy, music, and community as we bring Jam In The Trees back to Pisgah Brewing with a portion of the event proceeds once again going to Wild Forests and Fauna.” Lifelong resident of Asheville and President of Jam In The Trees, LLC, Laurel York, continues, “We hope the ‘jamsters’ will come out again in 2017 for an even better event than last year and show their support for their great cause!”

Jam in The Trees 2017 Initial Lineup:
Acoustic Syndicate
Peter Rowan
Larry Keel
Tim O’Brien
Jim Lauderdale
Underhill Rose
Ken Tizzard

More information about Jam in The Trees can be found at www.jaminthetrees.com, www.facebook.com/JamInTheTrees, www.twitter.com/jaminthetrees, and www.instagram.com/jaminthetrees.

 

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Photo 1 is by Scott Woody, photo 2 is by Simply Pickin' & the 3rd one is by Debbie Ryder

Photo 1 is by Scott Woody, photo 2 is by Simply Pickin’ & the 3rd one is by Debbie Ryder

Celebrating the Life and Music of Billy Constable at Isis
Thursday, Oct 8, 2015

7:30pm – 1:00am
743 Haywood Rd, West Asheville, North Carolina 28806
http://isisasheville.com/events/celebrating-the-life-and-times-of-billy-constable-2/

RSVP on Facebook here

Billy Constable was a well-known and much loved bluegrass musician from WNC who had been battling terminal brain cancer for the better part of a year. He lost his battle on Saturday, August 22nd, 2015.

His friends have organized a memorial event, The Billy Constable Memorial Jam, to honor this kind-hearted, talented man and the great contribution he has made to the music community of WNC and beyond. It will take place at Isis Restaurant and Music Hall in West Asheville on Thursday, October 8th from 7:30pm-1am.

“The outpouring of stories and memories online about Constable give an idea of the scope of a life dedicated to musical passion, and they tell the story of a kind, gentle soul, always willing to teach to anyone who wanted to learn,” writes Brian Swenk in Boone’s Mountain Times.

Included will be a memorial slideshow and a celebration of his life in a night of live music with Billy’s longtime musical compadres. We hope you will join us as we celebrate the rich legacy he has left us. Suggested donation is $10 at the door. Proceeds to benefit the Constable family. If you cannot make the show, but would like to donate, please do so at http://www.gofundme.com/nuj8ks

The lineup so far includes:
Sassagrass
Butch Robins
Steve McMurry (of Acoustic Syndicate)
Jon Stickley & Lyndsay Pruett (of Jon Stickley Trio)
Bearwallow (2015 MerleFest Band Competition Winners)
Amanda Platt (of The Honeycutters)
Taylor Martin
Sam Wharton
Darren Nicholson Band (of Balsam Range)
Blue Wheel Drive
Robert Greer (with members of Town Mountain)
Jim Rollins
Adam Masters
Billy Cardine
Bobby Miller
Jason and Jacob Burleson
Mary Lucey

more to be announced

More about Billy Constable:

Born March 23, 1959, Billy Constable was a well known and much loved musician from WNC.

Growing up in Avery county, he came from a rich lineage of musicians including; Lulu Belle and Scotty Wiseman, Lawrence Wiseman, David Wiseman, Fiddling Jimmy Wiseman, banjo picker Kent Wiseman, and Billy’s mother, Lois.

Billy formed his first band Leather Britches, and at the age of 14 he hit the road professionally joining Charlie Moore’s band in the early 1970’s. He went on to play with Doug Dillard and in the 80’s his family band The Constables was formed. They also appeared with the late great Rose Maddox in that band. In addition he played with Dick Tyner and Train 45, Ray Parks, and toured with Kenny Baker and Josh Graves.

In recent years he recorded with the Big Daddy Bluegrass Band with Steve McMurry, and Curtis Burch, Larry Keel, String Cheese Incident, Acoustic Forum, Hypnotic Clambake, and formed his own band Sassagrass.

He has shared the stage picking with; Vassar Clements, John Hartford, Butch Robins, Mac Wiseman, Leftover Salmon, Byron Berline, Sam Bush, Bill Monroe, Lester Flatt, Jim and Jesse, and the Osborne Brothers, to name a few.

Steeped in the rich knowledge of traditional bluegrass and Appalachian music, but reaching far beyond into gypsy jazz and other eclectic forms of music, he is well known as a musician’s musician.

A master of guitar, banjo, and mandolin, Billy has often been credited with teaching his musical compadres how to play and “play it right,” and we have all become better musicians and better people for knowing him.

Thank you Billy, for sharing your gift with us.  ~ written by Deb Ryder

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Acoustic Syndicate. Photo by Lynne Harty.

Acoustic Syndicate. Photo by Lynne Harty.

Acoustic Syndicate Performs in the Southeast This Fall, Announces Thanksgiving Show

Celebrating the Anniversaries of WNCW & Isothermal Community College in Sept
Shows in Georgia and Florida in Early November
Annual Thanksgiving Homecoming Show Set for Nov 29th at The Grey Eagle in Asheville

With a touring and recording history of more than 20 years, a strong following regionally and beyond, and a history of playing festivals like Bonnaroo and Farm Aid, North Carolina favorites Acoustic Syndicate returned in 2013 with their first record since 2004, Rooftop Garden.

The band is set to perform a select number of shows in the southeast this Fall including two shows on September 27th; a daytime performance at the Isothermal Community College (the home of WNCW radio) in Spindale, NC for the college’s 50 Year Anniversary, and another set later that evening at Pisgah Brewing Company’s outdoor stage in Black Mountain, NC to celebrate WNCW’s 25 Year Anniversary on the airwaves. In early November they return to Smith’s Olde Bar in Atlanta before heading on to Lucky’s in Valdosta, GA and the Riverhawk Music Festival in Brooksville, FL. Acoustic Syndicate is also happy to announce their annual Asheville Thanksgiving show at the Grey Eagle in Asheville on November 29th.

Having claimed the #6 spot in WNCW’s 2013 year-end Top-100 listener poll with Rooftop Garden, the band is as beloved to the Western North Carolina audience as they’ve ever been. “Acoustic Syndicate has remained one of WNCW listeners’ favorite regional and overall acts ever since they began in the ‘90’s,” says WNCW’s Martin Anderson. “In fact they were one of the Top 10 favorite WNCW artists during our big 20th Anniversary vote in 2009, ranking alongside such A-list acts as the Avett Brothers, the Allman Brothers, and Alison Krauss. When I think of bands that best represent the overall sound of what we do at WNCW – roots music, rock, jamming, harmonizing, songs that tell a good story – it’s hard to think of a better one than Acoustic Syndicate.”

Produced by Grammy Award winner Stewart Lerman (Boardwalk Empire, Patti Smith, The Roches, Antony and the Johnsons, Crash Test Dummies), Rooftop Garden features the band’s distinctive blend of rock and acoustic music, all influenced by the players’ love of a wide range of music, from reggae to American roots. “Their modern take on traditional bluegrass and rock values culminates in a glimmering, driving sound rich with acoustic textures and glowing vocals,” writes Paul Kerr on JamBase.

They have also branched out into new territory with the album as Glide’s Bryan Rodgers notes, “… in 2010, new songs began creeping into set-lists and the band began a new era. The culmination is Rooftop Garden…The passage of time, dedication to other interests (family, farming, and software engineering for instance) and newfound musical freedom helped the band create their most personal album yet, which is remarkable. All of the music… has a distinctly human touch, with topics like sustainability, the frailty of existence, love, and community. Rooftop Garden is somehow more immediate because of where the band now finds themselves musically: with no one to please but themselves and an even broader range of life experiences from which to cull material.”

“The tunes on this album were written with an essentially positive message, one about humanity, earth, responsibility and peace,” said singer/guitarist Steve McMurry. He and his cousin Bryon McMurry (banjo, electric guitar) split the songwriting and lead vocal duties 50/50 on this new album, and are joined by Bryon’s brother Fitz McMurry (drums) for the kind of three part harmony that only close relatives who grew up singing together can conjure up. The band is rounded out by always in-demand bassist Jay Sanders and dobro wizard Billy Cardine; both of whom make use of Moog synthesizers and pedals to craft a unique ensemble sound.

The McMurry family has been in family farming in the same region of Cleveland County, NC since the 1700s. Their love of the land and their serious approach to its stewardship is echoed by the love of the music they make and the care with which they make it. Rooftop Garden conveys important things about the environment we all share, grounded in the life experiences of people who truly love what they do. “Through our music, we have tried to maintain a consistent message, a reminder,” says Steve McMurry, “that this Earth is the only one we will ever have. And though we speak of some lofty ideals in our music, my most fervent hope is that when people listen to us or come to our show, they leave with a laugh and a smile and the satisfaction of having been a part of something positive.”

Acoustic Syndicate Fall Shows 2014
9/27 Sat – Isothermal CC 50th Anniv. on the Campus Green- Spindale, NC
9/27 Sat – WNCW’s 25th Anniv. Party at Pisgah Brewing Co – Black Mountain, NC*
11/6 Thu – Smith’s Olde Bar – Atlanta, GA
11/7 Fri – Lucky’s – Valdosta, GA
11/8 Sat – Riverhawk Music Festival – Brooksville, FL
11/29 Sat- The Grey Eagle – Annual Thanksgiving show – Asheville, NC
* w/ Shane Pruitt Band & Phuncle Sam

For more information and other news, please visit www.acousticsyndicate.com, facebook.com/AcousticSyndicate and twitter.com/asyndicate.

 

 

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Asheville’s Town Mountain is performing at The Grey Eagle for a special Pre-CD Release show and the kick off event for their “Leave the Bottle” tour surrounding their upcoming new release on Saturday, July 7th. They will have special guest Steve “Big Daddy” McMurry (frontman and founding member of Acoustic Syndicate from NC’s Cleveland County) performing solo before their set as well as jumping in on a few tunes! Doors are at 8pm and the show starts at 9pm. Tickets are $10 adv/$12 door.

Town Mountain and Steve McMurry. Photo by Jason Beverly

Town Mountain is excited to announce the release of their fourth album, Leave the Bottle, September 4th, 2012. The band finds themselves becoming one of the preeminent torchbearers of their craft, facing a promising future. “Centered around strong, soulful vocals, and poised to stay put,” says Woody Platt of the Steep Canyon Rangers, “Town Mountain are true to bluegrass in all the right ways and this new project keeps them firmly connected to the traditions of the genre, while also allowing them to reach out into the broad horizon of string band music. Leave the Bottle comes highly recommended.” Always contributing to the evolution of the bluegrass form, they toss influences as varied as surf-rock, gospel, and honky-tonk country into their field of play.

Mike Bub eloquently noted that Town Mountain is “not reinventing the wheel, but taking the wheel in their hands and driving the music down both familiar roads and out to new territory.” Jim Lauderdale was driven to exclaim, “There’s a new mountain in town – Town Mountain – and they get down with heart, grit, soul, and dive! They’ll get you moving!” They’ve done just that, winning the prestigious Rockygrass competition in 2005 before moving on to wow audiences from North Carolina’s Merlefest to Oregon’s String Summit to 2013’s February’s inaugural Mountain Song at Sea and all points between.

Banding together in 2005, Town Mountain is Phil Barker on mandolin and vocals, Robert Greer on lead vocals and guitar guitar, Jesse Langlais on banjo and vocals, Bobby Britt on fiddle, and newest member Jon Stickley rounds them out with his steady bass and rock-solid guitar and vocals. They share the kind of easy-going friendly bond that relays itself through their music. One listen to their instantly memorable songs, and it’s plain to see why Grammy-winner Mike Bub would align with the group to produce Leave the Bottle as well as 2011’s Steady Operator. Banjo player extraordinaire and longtime member of the Sam Bush Band, Scott Vestal, also joined the team by engineering the new album, which was recorded at Digital Underground Studio in Nashville, TN.

Their undeniable charm and winning way with words recently won Town Mountain a spot on Putumayo’s recent Bluegrass release, showcasing the song “Diggin’ on the Mountainside” alongside tracks from Alison Krauss, David Grisman, Sam Bush, Railroad Earth, The Seldom Scene, and more. Town Mountain has collaborated and/ or performed along with Doc Watson, Jim Lauderdale, Steep Canyon Rangers, Acoustic Syndicate, Keller Williams, Larry Keel, David Grisman, and The Infamous Stringdusters. They’ve been branching out as a band and as teachers, making their first overseas jaunt to Finland in the spring of 2012 and holding court at workshops in Canada, St. Louis, amongst other cities. The prestigious International Bluegrass Music Association has twice selected Barker for their songwriting showcase (2010 and 2011), and the band was part of the official showcase in 2011.

Thanks to their relatable, unforgettable lyrics along with their arresting stage presence and swagger, Town Mountain manages to rise above the seemingly bottomless canyon of bluegrass bands touring today and, inevitably, they will be traveling close to you sometime soon. Come on out and enjoy music filled with contagious energy and creative original scores!

Town Mountain. Photo by Jason Beverly.

Town Mountain’s “Leave the Bottle” Tour

Sat, July 7th – Asheville, NC – The Grey Eagle with Steve “Big Daddy” McMurry
Sun, July 8th – Aberdeen, NC – The Rooster’s Wife House Concert Series
Thur, July 19th –  Raleigh, NC – The Pour House Music Hall
Fri, July 20th – Staunton, VA – Mockingbird Roots Music Hall
Sat, July 21st – Ashland, VA -Ashland Coffee and Tea
Sun, July 22nd – Brooklyn, NY – Jalopy
Tue, July 24th – Cambridge, MA – The Cantab Lounge
June 25th – Grey, ME – Caswells Farm presents Bluegrass in the Barn
Fri & Sat, July 27-28th – Hiram, ME – Ossipee Valley Music Festival
Mon- Wed, July 30th – Aug 1st – St. Louis, MO – The Folk School of St. Louis – Workshop Residency
Fri, Aug 3rd – Fort Collins, CO – Acoustic Bridge Musical Potluck
Sat, Aug 4th – Keystone, CO – The Keystone Bluegrass and Beer Festival
Sun, Aug 5th – Casper, WY – Bear Trap Summer Festival
Wed, Aug 8th – Winter Park, CO -Ullrs Tavern
Fri, Aug 10th – Gold Hill, CO – The Gold Hill Inn
Sat, Aug 11th – Longmont, CO -The Dickens Opera House w/ Spring Creek
Aug 13-19th – Saskatoon, SK, Canada- Town Mountain will be teaching and playing at the camp this week. Northern Lights Bluegrass and Old Tyme Camp & Fest
Thur, Aug 23rd – Knoxville, TN – Barley’s Taproom
Sat, Aug 25, 2012 – Norfolk, VA – The Virginia Zoo Concert Series
Fri, Sept 7th – Portland, OR – Mississippi Pizza Pub
Sun, Sept 6th – Seattle, WA – “The Spotlight” House Concert
Sat & Sun, Sept 8-9th – Sisters, OR – Sisters Folk Festival
Tue, Sept 11th – Seattle, WA -The Tractor Tavern
Sat, Sept 15th – Asheville, NC– Brewgrass Festival w/ The Traveling McCoury’sMore tour dates on: townmountain.net/blog/tour/

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Bluebrass Strings- Horns - Big Chief Monk

Here’s a note from Larry and Jenny Keel and some snapshots of the Bluebrass Session they were recording last week in New Orleans:

Bluebrass String Section

We were honored this last week to be a part of a project where all the musicians created an entirely new form of music…legends from the New Orleans music scene and pioneers of the acoustic music scene collaborated to create Bluebrass 2… it is the continuation of the first project which we recorded in 2004, combining influences from Ireland, Scotland, England, Africa, America,delta blues, western swing, on and on … made for the most spiritual project I have ever been a part of…

Recorded entirely inside the legendary Maple Leaf Bar, on Oak Street, and produced by the presiding King of Oak, Chris Jones, and executive producer Little King Steve Metcalf (royalty out the ass!!),  we were guided into an adventure of epic proportions-  taking a magical musical journey with all kinds of string musicians and brass and drummers:  a cast of up to 15 people.. so far!

Lionel Batiste Jr

including heavy weights from the Rebirth Brass Band, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Mardi Gras Indian Chiefs, Acoustic Syndicate, Mad Tea Party, Aaron “Woody” Wood, and 101 Runners!

Stay tuned for more info and for this music you won’t be able to resist-  we’re still reeling with funky goodness from that trip!

Bryon McMurry and Kirk Joseph's Souzaphone

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All proceeds will go directly to helping offset Billy’s medical expenses.

Asheville, NC — A large group of friends has come together in the bluegrass and acoustic music scene in the area to help our good buddy, Billy Constable, raise funds to offset his medical expenses for a brain tumor that he was recently diagnosed with.  The Grey Eagle is hosting the event on Sunday, December 11, 2011.  The doors open at 6pm, donations will be accepted, and there will also be a silent auction.  Bands performing are Big Daddy Bluegrass Band, Asheville Bluegrass Collective (featuring: members of Steep Canyon Rangers, Larry Keel & Natural Bridge and Town Mountain), Jason Burleson and the Bluegrass Buddies, and Nikki Talley.

Travers Chandler writes in Bluegrass Today, “Anyone familiar with the acoustic music scene of Western NC, or with the music of the legendary Charlie Moore, is no stranger to Billy Constable. In fact, I am not certain Billy encountered many strangers. He is a friend to many people, and to those of us fortunate to know him well, even a great mentor.”

Billy has been diagnosed with a lump on the lower portion of his brain which has been causing increasingly frequent seizures. He is currently seeing medical specialists and gathering evaluations. The expense is certain to be high, and Billy is without medical insurance. We are coming together here, as friends and fellow musicians, to help offset those costs.

Billy Constable grew up in a very musical family in Avery County, and he has been playing music for most of his life. Billy is part of Avery County’s Wiseman family, which includes a number of professional musicians including Scotty Wiseman, Lawrence Wiseman, David Wiseman, Fiddling Jimmy Wiseman, banjo picker Kent Wiseman, and Billy’s mother, Lois.

Billy began playing guitar professionally as a youngster with bluegrass great Charlie Moore, who had married Billy’s mother. He also played in Douglas Dillard’s newly formed “post Dillards” bluegrass band The Doug Dillard Band from Hollywood, which also featured Byron Berline and occasional guests like Vassar Clements and Sam Bush.

After touring with The Doug Dillard Band, Billy took a break from the road in order to work on his banjo skills while playing in a family’s band, The Constables, who were living in California at the time. He later had the opportunity to tour with two more bluegrass greats, Kenny Baker, a veteran fiddler from Bill Monroe’s Bluegrass Boys, and Josh Graves, a long time Dobro player with Flatt & Scruggs’ Foggy Mountain Boys.

Billy’s approach to the banjo is firmly rooted in Appalachian string music, but it can be deceptively eclectic. His influences begin at home and with his family, but Billy’s repertoire is vast, and he is comfortable in most musical situations. In addition to banjo, Billy is also an accomplished musician on the guitar, mandolin and violin.

In recent years, Billy has carried his banjo into more jam-oriented groups such as Acoustic Forum from New York and New England’s Max Creek. He toured extensively and recorded with Hypnotic Clambake and The Larry Keel Experience. Billy has appeared on many shows with Leftover Salmon, and he was also a featured guest on a handful of String Cheese Incident shows and one of their recent albums “Carnival 99.” Billy also played with the seasonal Big Daddy Bluegrass Band with Steve McMurray, Curtis Burch and Larry Keel.

For more information about Billy Constable and for updates on his medical situation, please visit:  www.billyconstable.com and the FaceBook Event.

If people would prefer to mail a donation, please mail to:
Dave Ruch
155 St James Place
Buffalo NY 14222
dave@daveruch.com
716-884-6855

~~~~~~~~~~~~~  MEET THE PERFORMERS   ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Big Daddy Bluegrass Band The Big Daddy Bluegrass Band rides again! It has been five long years since the BDBB has taken the stage. They make their return on February 11th at the Visulite Theater in Charlotte, NC, for the debut of the new lineup which features some of the premier acoustic musicians working today. Steve “Big Daddy” McMurry, front man and founding member of Acoustic Syndicate, returns to the world of bluegrass music with a formidable arsenal of hot, young pickers. Jason Flournoy, formerly of Larry Keel & Natural Bridge / Shanti Groove, is highly respected in all genres of music across the nation. Jay Sanders is the long time bass man for Acoustic Syndicate and former with Donna The Buffalo. He is one of the hardest working and most exciting upright bass men on the East coast. Producer, engineer and dobro virtuoso, Billy Cardine, formerly of The Biscuit Burners, is one of Jerry Douglass’ favorite new dobro men. He has shared the stage with Edgar Meyer at Carnegie Hall and his recordings are featured on the BBC, PBS and the History Channel. Robert Greer, front man of Asheville bluegrass band Town Mountain, will also be joining the band adding harmonizing vocals, guitar, and his charismatic stage presenc

Asheville Bluegrass Collective– The Asheville Bluegrass Collective is a super-group of Asheville’s finest bluegrass musicians. The pickers include: Jon Stickley and Robert Greer (Town Mountain), Mark Schimick (Larry Keel and Natural Bridge), Charles Humphrey (Steep Canyon Rangers), Jason Flournoy, and many more special guests! Look out for some solid Asheville style Bluegrass!

Jason Burleson – The original banjo player with Blue Highway, Jason is a native of Newland, North Carolina. A talented multi-instrumentalist, he brings all-around musicianship to the group, not the least of which is his distinctive, rock-solid banjo style. Writing for the Memphis Area Bluegrass Association,Betty Westmoreland observed about Jason and his habit of saying very little onstage: “His banjo does the talking, as is true of most superb performers. From Newland, NC, in Avery County, Burleson is part of that fine crop of North Carolina banjo players. There must be something about the air, or water, or the soil in that part of the country—so many fine banjo players seem to come out of those hills.”

Jason’s instrumental compositions form an integral part of the Blue Highway repertoire, including “The North Cove” ( Through the Window of a Train), hailed by one critic as “a burning instrumental with a sinuous melody” that offers “more to chew on than just the whiz-bang pyrotechnics of many modern bluegrass instrumentals” (Smoky Mountain News). Jason also anchors the group’s quartets with his bass vocals. A jazz devotee, Jason’s talent hasn’t been fully revealed yet to the bluegrass community and gives Blue Highway unlimited options for the future.

Jason will be leading a virtuosic group of bluegrass musicians featuring everyone’s favorite bluegrass buddy, David Via.

David Vias songs come from being raised and living up in the Blue Ridge mountains of Patrick County, Virginia. Via (as most folks call him – that’s pronounced Vi and rhymes with sky) is a well-known figure in bluegrass/newgrass circles with twenty-some odd years of singing and songwriting.

Via first performed Americana/Bluegrass with The Bluegrass Buddies with Alan Bibey and Ronnie Bowman. Over the years, Via has played in a lot of lineups and with a lot of great pickers: the newgrass In Sync – Jody King, James Donchez, Kim Gardiner, and Alan Purdue, the Dan River Revue – Wyatt Rice, Tommy Morse, Tim Jefferson, and Pete Ross. Via has joined the stage with Vassar Clemmens, Sammy Shelor, Ronnie Bowman, Tony Rice, and John Cowan. He currently teams up with two-time grammy winner Curtis Burch to perform more intimate shows and highlights his original material with award-winning musician friends who spin David Via & Corn Tornado.

Nikki Talley Hardworking, energetic, mountain girl with a big voice…these could all describe Nikki Talley. Raised in North Carolina and hailing from Asheville, it’s only fitting that her music is as eclectic as the state that boasts the mountains and the sea. Trying to pin down Nikki’s style, critics and reviewers alike have compared her to an early Liz Phair and Gillian Welch, but to leave the comparisons there would be doing a disservice to her fiery stage performance, hauntingly seductive and raw gritty lyrics, lifted by a voice that harkens back to the Appalachian roots from which she was born, and shores up on the edges of contemporary southern rock, country, blues, and jazz that has her audiences stomping and clapping for more.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Show Details at a Glance:
Benefit for Billy Constable
Sunday, December 11, 2011
The Grey Eagle
185 Clingman Avenue
Asheville, NC 28801
(828) 232-5800
www.thegreyeagle.com

$10 Suggested donation

Bands: Big Daddy Bluegrass Band, Asheville Blue Grass Collective (featuring: members of Steep Canyon Rangers, Larry Keel & Natural Bridge and Town Mountain), Jason Burleson and the Blue Grass Buddies, and Nikki Talley.

The doors open at 6pm silent auction will close at 9pm.

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Really pumped up about the Acoustic Syndicate show this Friday, May 6th at the NC Music Factory in Charlotte!

Here is a bit about what they’ve been up to from what they told Ryan Snyder in a recent interview with YES! Weekly:

As the Acoustic Syndicate family grows, a new album finally awaits:

There`s maybe no better way to sum up the outlook of Acoustic Syndicate circa 2005 than the words of Bryon McMurry on the Shelby folk-rock oufit’s song “It Was Good While It Lasted.” “Nothing lasts forever and we find out who we are,” he sang on the band’s 2000 album Tributaries, unaware then that it might be the band’s mantra in only a few years time as they entered an indeterminable furlough. The McMurrys — Bryon, Fitz and cousin Steve — knew just who they were: a close-knit group built upon rural values of sustainability and commitment to the family. When the two brothers began to experience growth in their own families, their incessant touring lifestyle of the past decade suddenly became an afterthought.

“Fitz and Brian were both having to be gone during pregnancies and the last thing we wanted to do is have our families suffer on account of what we’re doing,” said Steve. “It’s important for us to stay centered and understand what’s most important. It was the obvious thing to do at that point.”

The group was arguably going out at their peak. They had just released one of their best-received albums in 2004’s Long Way Round (Sugar Hill), and kicked off the album’s supporting tour with a return to the Bonnaroo Music Festival after performing the inaugural festival two years earlier. Steve says that show in particular was instrumental in that tour’s success.

. . .   . . .    . . .

At the urging of their booking agent Hugh Southard, the group started playing more and more shows around 2007, learning how to juggle being a working band and family men at the same time. The days of 180- 200 shows per year may be over for the band, but Steve says that being able to have their families present has engendered a new kind of creative freedom in them.

As of now, they’re not only looking to begin recording their first album in seven years, but their arrangement is growing as well. Bassist Jay Sanders invited a friend, dobro player Billy Cardine, to join the group for a performance at last year’s Asheville Earth Day Celebration, and Steve said they knew almost immediately that he was a perfect fit for the group.

The addition is progressive for the group’s sound, which Steve describes as being edgier than any other era of the band, and for the first time, they’ll be writing songs specifically to feature a certain instrument. They hope to hit Echo Mountain Recording in Asheville with the pool of 15-16 songs later in 2011, many of which Steve describes as being written from a deeper, more personal place than ever before.

“I always tried to keep songwriting away from my personal life, but there’s been a couple of things in my life with living and people dying. Some major influences that really changed my reality,” he said somewhat hesitantly. “I thought about it and thought about it, and sort of avoided writing anything about it, but something kept bugging me to do it.”

He added that the time away has allowed him and his cousins to refocus their creativity after admittedly becoming burnt out in the year before their hiatus. Reenergized as a group, Steve believes that the band is in as good of a creative place as they’ve ever been.

“When you get burnt out and you start to write songs from the gut, it’s just not good,” he said. “It’s better to be creative out of a desire to be creative and not a need to be creative.”

READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE: http://www.yesweekly.com/triad/article-11650-as-the-acoustic-syndicate-family-grows-a-new-album-finally-awaits.html

Photo by Bright Life Photography

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