By Tzar Wilkerson
Lost Province is well-known locally for the quality of the live performances they regularly host, and this Friday’s stage is graced with the exceptional talents of country music giant Radney Foster, folk troubadour Eric Erdman, and Lost Province regulars Working Title Farm
Lost Province CEO/Owner Lynne Mason is excited to see Working Title Farm performing at the venue once again. “Last time it was so much fun. They all did some of their solo things and they played together. [Shari Smith] asked us if we would be ‘the place where travelling musicians could come and play’, and I said ‘Absolutely!’ So we have this nice informal arrangement with her to bring on guest musicians when they’re in the community. What amazes me is the number of people in our community that are aware of some of these musicians. Radney actually played at Merlefest this year, so we’re thrilled to have him back.”
Mason described Lost Province’s ethos behind the intimate performances that they host, “We have a stage for musicians, and it’s a relaxed family-friendly atmosphere. We invite those that enjoy music to come and have a social time with friends and family and to listen to great music! There’s no cover charge. So many pubs have music, and we like to generally work with local musicians and bands, but we always wanna have some live music here. We do it Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, and it’s part of our commitment to providing great music to the community.”
However, the extraordinary performances aren’t the only draw for Lost Province’s regulars. Mason’s pride in the breweries beers shone through as she spoke about their selections. “We keep 12 craft beers on tap – all brewed here in Boone – and we now have available a selection of our craft beers in cans. So people can come enjoy beer on-site and they can buy some beer to go. And I think the neat thing is that several of these beers we’ve started, a lot of them are award-winning beers now. We’re committed to brewing quality craft beer in a variety of styles, so there should be a beer style for every taste.”
Working Title Farm
A collective of artists in various mediums, the creative geniuses at Working Title Farm hone their diverse crafts in the wilderness, supporting one-another and improving their arts through collaboration. Working Title Farm property owner, author, and publisher Shari Smith explained the concept behind the collective:
“Located 5 minutes out of downtown Boone, yet well in the woods, it’s a place where artists — particularly Southern writers, but not exclusively – and songwriters come (many of them from Nashville) to work on their projects. Some are working together, some are finishing something, some are starting something. They just hang out and we eat together and we talk over what they’re working on.
In the summer – from the Friday before the 4th to the Sunday after – we have what we call “literary church camp”. We worship the literary gods and in the morning I assign a writing prompt. For example, the 1st writing prompt (hopefully they won’t see this article before they do this) will be “My Father’s Tacklebox”. I’ll read something that I wrote about it that was published in some magazines several years ago. They’ll spend the morning off by themselves — I’ve got little places set up all over the property, all over the mountain for them to sit and write 500 words on what spoke to them about looking through my dad’s tacklebox. We’ll come back together for lunch, then in the afternoon everybody will go off and do their own thing, work on whatever projects they want. Then we’ll come back together for dinner. After dinner people will sit around the campfire and read what they wrote about the tacklebox, they may sing a song that they have been working on. Everybody kind of encourages and supports. Then, the next morning, everything starts all over with a new writing prompt. It’s a good solid 10-12 days of constant creativity.
We consider Lost Province our “official Boone hangout.” We do spend a lot of time isolated on the mountain, but when we go into town we know that that’s a great place for us. The guys – and I say guys because we don’t have any female songwriters right now – can take over the stage and they just kind of swap out who’s gonna sing now. We’ve got a band and they all know each other’s songs, and so they back each other up. Even if we’re not performing, that’s where we go for pizza and a beer, that’s where we go if we wanna go to Mast Store and shop and before we go home grab something to eat – we go to Lost Province. Andy and Lynn are just really good to us. We do have some famous faces, and that’s a place that feels really safe – so that’s where we go! Authors and singer-songwriters come here for a free place to stay when they’re on tour. I have a guest cabin, and it gets them a home-cooked meal or two.
In some ways I think it’s an artist collective, but it’s more than that. We’ve got some projects that are coming up that I hope are gonna be really good for Boone. Bring in some more tourism and – what I want to do is establish that Boone is the place for creative people to come and work on whatever projects they’ve got going on and you just might see them hanging out at places like Lost Province!”