By Madison Fisler Lewis
Oct. 16, 2014. On Saturday, Oct. 18, Joe Shannon’s Mountain Home Music will present Mountain Front Porch Picking and Singing featuring Strictly Strings and Jim Avett. The concert will be held at Blowing Rock School Auditorium starting at 7:30 p.m.
The first half of the concert will feature Strictly Strings, a quintet of musicians from the Junior Appalachian Musicians programs (JAM). The band consists of instructor Cecil Gurganus and his students Willow Dillon, Kathleen Burnett, Liam Purcell, Anissa Burnett and Caleb Coatney.
“They have all been taking lessons from Cecil for years,” said Rodney Sutton, executive director of Joe Shannon’s Mountain Home Music.
“They played out in Music Fest in July, and they have played a bit at Mountain Home Music before, but this is the first time they have been really featured at Mountain Home Music. They play Appalachian old time band music which predates bluegrass, and all of them can just play anything. They are all multi-instrumentalists. They picked the name ‘Strictly Strings’ back when strings was all that they played. But now they are doing incredible things like great three and four-part harmony singing that is a big part of their shows now.”
The second half of the concert will feature Jim Avett, a Caldwell County native who combines country, ballads and stories to create a unique and beloved sound.
“One comes away from a Jim Avett performance with the feeling that this is an honest man sharing his life and love of music,” read a press release. “It’s like spending the evening on the front porch singing and talking with an old friend.” For this concert, Jim Avett will be joined by Patrick Crouch on guitar and Big Al Johnson on the fiddle.
“It is going to be a great concert,” Sutton said. “Strictly Strings will play the first set, then we will take a break and then Jim will come and do the rest of the set and of course we will have our usual sing-a-longs. It will be a very well-rounded show with a down-home feel to it.”
Advance tickets for the show are $20 for adults and $11 for students. Tickets purchased at the door on the day of the event are $22 for adults and $11 for students. Children aged 12 and under are admitted to the concert free of charge. To purchase tickets online, click here.