Five bluegrass bands will take to the porch of the Jones House this Friday continuing the 2016 Summer Concerts series, including Sigmon Stringers, Jonah Riddle & Carolina Express, Cane Mill Road, The Dollar Brothers, and Surefire.
“There are so many great bluegrass bands in our area that we had to dedicate a night to hosting as many as we could pack in an evening,” says concert organizer, Mark Freed.
The event starts at 5:00 with the Sigmon Stringers, a family bluegrass band based in Newton. The group began in the 1970s with grandfather Clinton Sigmon and his sons, and today the band features three generations of the Sigmon family. The third generation, including Beau, Mollie, Maggie, and Anna, grew up playing with the family group and the youngest is now a teenager. The band has become a regular act at Merlefest and other regional events and venues.
Jonah Riddle and Carolina Express will follow the Sigmon Stringers, featuring brothers Jonah and Grayson Riddle. Jonah is a banjo playing teenager who cut his chops performing in church multiple times a week, and his younger brother Grayson plays guitar and sings. The group has shared the stage with some of the best groups in bluegrass and performed across the country, though western North Carolina is home.
Another youthful group follows with the High Country’s Cane Mill Road, featuring Liam Purcell on mandolin, Kinsey Greene on bass, Eliot Smith on guitar, and Trajan Wellington on banjo. Purcell and Greene first met at the Jones House in the Junior Appalachian Musicians Program, before going on to form Cane Mill Road.
“We are really excited to have these guys back to the Jones House to play a show on the porch,” says Freed, who also directs the music lessons program.
The Dollar Brothers will follow Cane Mill Road, bringing one of the High Country’s stalwart bluegrass bands back to the Jones House porch. Featuring brothers Darrell on mandolin, Barry on fiddle, and Wade on guitar, the band is usually rounded out with Tim Norris on banjo and J.M. Trivette on bass. The band are favorites at many of their regular stops, such as Sims BBQ and Orchard at Altapass.
“The Dollar Brothers have that good traditional mountain bluegrass sound that you just don’t hear outside the region,” Freed says.
The evening will close with Surefire, featuring the picking and singing of Tom Isaacs and Rob Norris, along with Tim Norris and J.M. Trivette on banjo and bass respectively. The band took off like wildfire when it first formed about 10 years ago, with the Grascals’ John Bryan as another founding member, before touring opportunities with other groups halted their momentum. Though they only perform occasionally these days, Surefire is still one of the hottest bluegrass acts in the High Country.
The Summer Concerts at the Jones House are free, and patrons are encouraged to bring their own chair or blanket to sit under the giant maple trees in the front lawn of the community center. Performances take place every Friday at 5:00 p.m. at the Jones House rain or shine. The Jones House is located at 604 W. King St. in downtown Boone.
The 2016 Summer Concerts at the Jones House are produced by The Town of Boone’s Cultural Resources Department and sponsored by the Downtown Boone Development Association, Mast General Store, M-Prints, ECRS, Rosemary Horowitz, Melanie’s Food Fantasy, and Stick Boy Bread Company. Friday’s concert is also sponsored by Appalachian Music Shoppe. For more information about the series, including a complete schedule of performances, please visit the Jones House online at www.joneshouse.org or call828.268.6280.
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