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Thanks to Girl In the Garden for the closing song
 
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Brady Jacquin is a singer-songwriter from Asheville, North Carolina. Drawing from influences like Fleet Foxes, Mumford and Sons, and Matt Corby, his band's unorthodox style fuses acoustic and electric guitars, pianos, different percussion types, extensive harmonies, intricate finger picking, and pretty much anything else he can get his hands on! He extends this fresh approach to his lyrics as the imagery serves to lose the listener in his world (a strange world, though it may be)!
 
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Asheville based songwriter Julia Sanders believes in letting life be your art supplies. With a soulful voice and moving melodies, her music draws inspiration from time living in New Orleans, Montana and the mountains of North Carolina. She winds the journey of heartbreak, love and self-searching into poetic songs that will have you shuffling across the dance floor with a tissue in hand.  
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Matt Walsh is a singer-songwriter, guitarist, filmmaker and actor from Statesville NC who performs 200 plus shows a year either solo or with his rhythm section, 'The Movers'. His albums Life After Rock N Roll (2017 Full Bloom Records) and The Midnight Strain (2018 Full Bloom Records) have been hailed by music publications and played on radio stations in the US, Canada, Germany, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and Australia. Matt’s sound is a clever blend of numerous styles of the music that have influenced him since his youth - early electric and country Blues, Rock N Roll, Rockabilly, Soul, R&B, Country, Bluegrass, Jazz and Psychedelia. His focus on making all original music by combining the influences that inspired him, along with his own ideas, have produced an exciting blend of many genres without rules or limitations.
 
His exposure to music came first came from his mother through her love of Motown. When Matt was 9 years old, she took him to a Prince concert and afterwards, he knew he wanted to be a musician. His musical education began with his late uncle who turned him onto a record collection that included early 1950’s electric Blues and 1960's Rock which inspired Matt to play guitar. When he was 13, Matt got a knock off electric guitar for $25 at a flea market and set out to learn the instrument. He furthered his musical education when he began absorbing the music on old record labels, notably Chess, Sun and Stax . 
 Less than a decade later, he began performing in clubs and in the years to follow, he established himself as a highly regarded musician in the Blues world with his first release, Hard Luck (2007), as one of the few artists in the genre capable of writing relevant original material without relying on any cover songs from the past. The album got rave reviews in multiple music publications, radio play on stations around the world and a featured spot on XM 74 Satellite Radio as a 'Pick to Click'. Around this time Matt joined Bob Margolin (guitarist for Muddy Waters 1973-1980) and performed with some of his heroes, legendary artists like Howlin’ Wolf's guitarist Hubert Sumlin and members of Muddy Water's band, Pinetop Perkins and Willie "Big Eyes" Smith.
While he was looking for a new direction to expand his music, Matt started working with drummer Austin Hicks after they met on Craigslist in 2013. They formed the drum-guitar duo, the Low Counts and branded themselves as, "Blue Collar Rock-N-Roll". They turned heads, made dedicated fans and blew audiences away with their no frills, high energy stage show. Their ride was cut short on March 8th 2017 when Austin passed away unexpectedly. Matt wrote 27 songs that the duo released over three albums in the four short years they were together (The Low Counts 2014 Real Original Records, Unsettled Days 2015 Grimtale Records, Years Pass By 2015 Real Original Records)
Matt released his first full length solo studio album in almost a decade, Life After Rock N Roll' (2017 Full Bloom Records). The album reignited his standing as a solo artist and found him stretching out to make powerful, refined music that was entirely different than any of his previous works and his third full length studio album, The Midnight Strain (2018 Full Bloom Records) built upon that success. Matt released his fourth full length studio album 'Burnt Out Soul' (Full Bloom Records) on September 25th 2020 that he recorded at the legendary Columbia Records Studio A on Music Row in Nashville TN.
 
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Stephen Evans & the True Grits
Folk Rock
 Born and raised in Fort Lauderdale, Florida by musical parents, Stephen Evans naturally had the desire to perform music.  He began by making his friends watch him perform to records of his dad’s band, Four Saints. He progressed by playing the trumpet in various school bands, singing in the choir, and performing in musicals. 
 In his 20’s, Stephen was inspired by his brother, Scot Evans, who was the bassist/vocalist in the regionally successful band, Floating Men, from Nashville, TN.  So Stephen started his own rock band, Mean Season, in the late 80’s where he began honing his songwriting skills on the guitar.  After a few years of local success and radio play in Tallahassee, FL, the band moved to Atlanta, GA to increase their success.  Unfortunately, the band broke up, and left Stephen to try his hand at performing solo around Atlanta.
 Soon the jammed highways of the big city drove him to the beautiful mountain town of Asheville, NC in 1996, where he quickly began soaking in the creative influence of his amazing surroundings.  After many years of vacillating between being a professional musician and being building a nest in Asheville, Stephen has focused on his love for creating and performing music.
 In June of 2015, Stephen released his debut CD, “Something to Bleed”, with his band, the True Grits.  The record received local and national praise for its passion and creativity.  The band members are Brian Shoemaker (bass/electric guitar)  Sam Hess (drums) and Woodstock (mandolin), along with special guests:  Halli Anderson of River Whyless (violin/backing vocals), his brother, Scot Evans of Floating Men (bass on ‘1000 Roses), and his mother, Barbara Evans (backing vocals on ‘Sound’). 
 The latest EP release, “Under the Bridge” came out in 2017 to positive reception and local radio play as well.  This record was engineered by Kyle Corbett, who can occasionally be seen joining the True Grits to provide colorful lead guitar for the live band shows.  The EP has 5 songs that range from rock to folk rock and describe an appreciation of Stephen's time in Asheville. Shawn Duxbury, Stephen's former bandmate in Mean Season, is a guest Grit performing lead acoustic guitar on the song 'Waiting'. The last track, 'A Rose for Emily', is a cover song written by Jeff Holmes & the Floating Men, and is based on the short story by William Faulkner of the same name. 
Stephen’s strong melodic songwriting style is a blend of creative imagery of darkness and hopeful optimism.  There is no denying the passion that shines through with his powerful vocals and lyrics.  Songs like ‘The Garden’, ‘Cherokee Hills’, ‘1000 Roses’ and ‘Shining Star’ are beacons of his folk rock songcraft.  With some local radio play on WNCW 88.7, 103.7 WPVM, and 98.1 The River, and upcoming shows with the True Grits as well as solo shows spreading around the Southeast, be sure to check out what Stephen Evans wants to share with you.
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Mixerman
 
Creative Sound Lab
 
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Once upon a time in the budding music-mecca of Asheville, NC, a man with a trumpet, an acoustic guitar and a mission metamorphosed into the synergistic soul/indie-pop band, Hustle Souls. With 2 ½ years of touring under their belt, the band’s feel-good, modern meets vintage sound, have earned them a reputation as one of the region’s most promising independent acts.
Lead singer and keyboardist, Billy Litz’s rootsy influences and vulnerable compositions are embroidered, garnished, and decked out by a powerhouse soul band. The rhythm section, Tommy Moore and Sean McCann aggressively usher in a tight jazz and R&B influence, while guitarist, Chris Everett, brings the group to the next level with his rock-ribbed feel.
​In 2017 the band was approached by gold and platinum mixer and producer Eric “Mixerman” Sarafin (Ben Harper, the Broadcast, Pharcyde) about making a record which has set the ball rolling at a different pace. Hustle Souls’ eclectic sound will soon come together on their debut full-length album, “Color.”
 
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The Pressley Girls
 
Piedmont Temperance Movement
 
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Twin sisters, Katie and Corie Pressley, were born and raised in the Appalachian mountain community of Brasstown, North Carolina. They are affectionately called Chatter and Chitter on their mother’s popular Appalachian blog Blind Pig & the Acorn.
The girls enjoyed a musical influence literally from their arrival home from the hospital. Jerry Wilson, their grandfather, who they call Pap, was a musical legend in their neck of the woods.
Jerry performed for many years as part of The Wilson Brothers. The duo performed gospel music in the polished high harmonies of the classic brother duet style. They performed at churches, festivals, homecomings, and benefits throughout the south. Over the years they won many awards including the 1998 North Carolina Heritage Award. They were also featured in publications such as “The Old-Time Herald”.
The girls often tell the story of laying in their bedroom floor with ears pressed tightly to the floor to hear the sounds of music flowing up from the basement as Pap and his band practiced. Katie says “Mama would make us go to bed but as soon as the lights were out we’d sneak from the covers, lay in the floor, and let the music lull us to sleep.”
The Pressley Girls began singing in church with other children and gradually began to sing alone with Pap accompanying them on guitar. At about the same time, Corie and Katie joined the John C. Campbell Folk School Clogging Team.
Staying with the JCCFS Cloggers for over seven years, the girls then joined up with the Kudzu Kickers Clogging Team. Becoming  proficient in the traditional Appalachian Dance Style seemed to help solidify the girls rhythm for music.
The family band evolved into Pap, Paul (Pap’s youngest son and the girls’ uncle), Tipper (Pap’s only daughter and the girls’ mother), Ben and Mark (sons of Pap’s oldest son Steve and cousins of the girls’), and Corie and Katie.
In the beginning, the twins could hardly be tied down to sing a song or two with the group before they ran off to play. But as time passed, each girl picked up her own instrument and learned the art of singing harmony from Pap and Paul.
These days, The Pressley Girls, Paul, and Tipper are making the music they were raised on and ensuring the tradition of Appalachian music is continued.
Kathryn O'Shea -
 
 
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Larue June
 
 
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“There’s a unique dynamic going on in the music of Asheville, North Carolina singer/songwriter Kathryn O’Shea. As a writer, her songs tend toward the confessional or autobiographical, the type we most often hear accompanied by an acoustic guitar. But O’Shea’s husky, low-toned moan is buoyed instead by her skeletal banjo playing.”
-The Greenville Journal
 
Known best for her hauntingly poignant lyricism and masterful vocal play, Kathryn has been featured by Sofar Sounds, WPVM Radio, WNC Original Music Podcast, and more. Last fall, she opened for the internationally renowned Los Angeles-based artist Terra Naomi at 7 Stages Theatre in Atlanta, then moved home shortly after and placed 2nd overall in the 11th annual Brown Bag Songwriter’s Competition at The Asheville Music Hall. Kathryn is currently recording her debut studio EP with M.G. O'Shea, a talented audio engineer who just so happens to be her big brother. Last summer, the two worked together to produce Kathryn's debut single, “Snow."
 
Immersive Atlanta premiered the track wrote the following:
"The moment Kathryn O’Shea’s enormous voice slips into the jaunty bustle of ‘Snow,’ you’ll surely wonder what record label she’s gunning for. With a timbre as dynamic as Florence Welsh, the singer/songwriter strips back the sentimental mush from falling snow to tell a clever tale about getting holed in for the winter; even in just four minutes, she fleshes out a character who wrestles with more than just frozen desire.”
 
January 27, 2021

Heather Taylor Mini Episode

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Songstress, visual artist & multi-instrumentalist Heather Taylor lights up the stage with her award winning folk & soul influenced tunes. 
Heather Taylor is creative to her core. Classically trained at The Crane School of Music, the Asheville, NC resident is accompanied by her octave mandolin and flute. She draws elements of blues, Americana, roots and rock into her songwriting.
Taylor won the Brown Bag Songwriting Competition in 2017 and her more recent accolades include her win as Mountain Xpress readers’ second favorite local lyricist in the 2019 Best Of WNC survey, a solo debut at the international Fall LEAF Festival at Lake Eden, and a tour as a part of the NC Songsmiths collective.
Heather is currently and actively working towards releasing original tunes and monthly cover songs to her patrons through Patreon.
Laura's tipjar info   Venmo @Laura-Boswell-1     PayPal leboswell9@gmail.com
 
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Anna May
 
 
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“Laura is a vibrant, wholly original, deeply personal young artist. Her writing moves us closer to what the great Arthur Miller called the hidden narrative: the possibility of a moment of clarity, the experience of the genuine. I’m grateful for young writers like Laura in whose talent the deeply felt, sincere expression is very much alive and well.”- Grammy award-winning songwriter Mike Reid
 
About
 
Laura exhibits a poetic and technical depth that has garnered comparisons to Joni Mitchell, Sufjan Stevens, and Nick Drake. She writes intimate folk music with classical influence; along with being a singer-songwriter, Laura has a degree in classical guitar performance and studied classical piano from a young age. Laura views music as a bridge to human connection and vulnerability, as well as a powerful tool for fostering community. She has self-released two albums, Counting Eyes (2014) and Fall Away (2017). Hailing from the valleys of Central Pennsylvania, Laura now resides in the mountains of North Carolina where she continues to write, record, perform, and teach.
 
Education
 
Laura earned a Bachelor of Music in Classical Guitar Performance from Guilford College in Greensboro, NC, where she also studied classical piano. In the fall of 2013 she studied at the USC’s Thornton School of Music with members of the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet. Laura has participated in masterclasses with Pepe Romero, Denis Azabagic, Adam Holzman, Martha Masters, Ben Verdery, Sergio Assad, and Duo Sudamericano.

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