Join us on the porch to hear bluegrass banjo player Carl Johnson, who raises Tennessee Walking Horses near Nashville, and friends including old-time fiddle and banjo player Joseph Decosimo of Durham, North Carolina as well as guitar and two-finger banjo player Jim Lloyd of Rural Retreat, Virginia.
Jim is the proprietor of Lloyd’s Barber Shop, a local gathering spot for collecting and trading tunes, stories, and songs. Carl and Jim have performed together at the Black Banjo and Fiddle Gathering in Boone, North Carolina, among other venues. This event is made possible with support from the Black & Global Banjo Roots project and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Join us on the porch for a special noon performance by banjo virtuoso Murphy Hicks Henry and her two sisters, Nancy Pate and Laurie Tanner. Henry and her husband perform as “Red and Murphy,” and Nancy (guitar) and Laurie (bass) played in the band for several years. The band has recorded six LPs and numerous CDs featuring many of Henry’s original songs, including the feminist number “I Ain’t Domesticated Yet.” Nancy is also a songwriter, and the group has recorded several of her original songs. According to Murphy, “We were all raised in North Georgia (Clarkesville), a family of five girls. Our father was the general practitioner there for 50 years, and our mother was a homemaker who turned Southern Baptist Church activist when we all left the nest.” The group will perform a combination of original songs, gospel tunes, and what Henry calls “some bluegrass standards that we have flipped the gender on.”
Murphy Hicks Henry is the cofounder (with her husband Red) of the Murphy Method, a forty-plus video series offering instruction on the banjo, guitar, mandolin, fiddle, and ukulele. She is also the author of Pretty Good For A Girl: Women in Bluegrass (University of Illinois Press, 2013). Murphy wrote a monthly column in the Banjo Newsletter for over twenty years before turning it over to her daughter, Casey.
Diali Cissokho & Kaira Ba formed after Senegalese griot musician Diali Keba Cissokho moved to North Carolina and began to look for musicians who shared his love and passion for creating music based on Manding tradition, flavored with local and personal styles. The outcome of this collaboration is an infectious sound reminiscent of West African dance bands full of unison melody, adventurous improvisation, fiery solos and polyrhythmic frameworks. With lyrics in Manding, Wolof, and English, Kaira Ba illuminates its listeners with stories of ancient and modern West Africa and how they relate to today’s universal experiences and emotions felt by everyone, regardless of origin. Kaira Ba invokes the participation of the audience in the creation of captivating musical moments that often incite spontaneous dancing by the performers and audiences alike, helping to create a peaceful and loving community. This event is co-sponsored by UNC’s Department of Music, the Center for Global Intiatives, and the Department of African, African American, and Diaspora Studies. Read more
In celebration of the 2014 conference of the U.S. branch of the International Association for the Study of Popular Music, CSAS will host a free catered reception this Thursday evening with local favorites Bevel Summers. Here’s how ReverbNation describes the band:
Bevel Summers performs with the philosophy of quick draw pistoleer the Sundance Kid from the famed 60′s post-modern Western: “I’m better when I move.” Likening comparisons from Johnny Cash to The Wailers to Fleetwood Mac and back, the band’s choruses seem to burst through the confines of whatever hole-in-the-wall joint or basement they’re playing, and you might feel, for an instant, as if you’re on a back porch in the middle of the woods, the sounds of fiddle, summer crickets, lush harmonies, and the plink of guitar strings melding so effortlessly. At their core, these songs were borne of the blues, but in their live incarnation, Bevel Summers is joyful. This is what youth feels like — the highs and the lows, and the late nights full of whiskey and music in between.