The historic Jones House is painted white with green trim, but the porch will be full of the blues on Friday night for the Summer Concerts at the Jones House series.
The evening will feature two regional blues bands, including the Luke Mears Band and the King Bees, starting at 5:00 p.m. from the porch of the Jones House.
The Luke Mears Band will start the evening, led by guitar and harmonica player and singer, Luke Mears. Mears was born and raised in Elkin, where he began learning guitar and diving head first into the blues. With a soulful voice, Mears’s singing grabbed the attention of listeners, and he started performing in 2008. Mears attended Appalachian State University, where he developed the band, including Russell McCumber on fiddle and Cory Myers on percussion. McCumber was raised in Vermont, where he fell in love with fiddles and fiddle music. He moved to southern Appalachia more than six years ago to explore old-time and bluegrass music, as well as learning the craft of violin making. Myers is a Winston-Salem native, who started playing music as a teenager. Myers released a solo recording As the Crow Flies last year.
“I’m really excited to have the Luke Mears Band on the porch this week,” says concert organizer, Mark Freed. “Luke first grabbed my attention several years ago as a young college student with his guitar chops and powerful voice as a solo act in a classroom, so it will be great to hear him with his band on a stage.”
The High Country’s reigning blues staples, The King Bees, will follow The Luke Mears Band, bringing their seasoned sound and deep knowledge of the blues to the porch. For the past three decades, Rob Baskerville and Penny Zamagni have toured the country and world as The King Bees, helping to champion the blues and blues elders and masters. Aside from their constant work fronting their own band, Baskerville and Zamagni have backed and performed with dozens of blues masters, including Jerry McCain, Charlie Bristol, Neal Pattman, Thomas “Guitar” Gable, “Chicago” Bob Nelson, and even Bo Diddley. The King Bees also created and host the annual New River Blues Festival in Ashe County, since 2003.
“Rob and Penny have made huge strides to help keep the blues of the southeast alive and well in northwest North Carolina,” Freed says. “And not only are they teachers, promoters, and living encyclopedias of the blues, they also are great performers.”
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. In extreme inclement weather, the concerts are moved inside the Jones House to the Mazie Jones Gallery, which can seat the first 40 patrons on a first-come-first-serve basis. 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. For more information about the series, including a complete schedule of performances, please visit the Jones House online at www.joneshouse.org or call 828.268.6280.
You must be logged in to post a comment.