Performers Spring 2014

Afrobeta

afrobeta.webMiami’s avant-dance duo Afrobeta tear up dancefloors with their rapid-fire vocals, funky synths and head bopping basslines. The dynamic duo of producer Tony “Smurphio” Laurencio and frontwoman Cuci Amador meld bubbling electro-house with pop song structures and a tasty smattering of retro nostalgia. With a unique and diverse sound that transcends traditional genres, their joyous beats and dazzling live shows represent the modern underground coming up for air.

Apple Chill Cloggers

The Apple Chill Cloggers were formed in 1975 to preserve, interpret, and teach the traditional style of Southern Appalachian Mountain clogging. The team performs for festivals, benefits and other events around North Carolina and beyond, inspiring audiences with high energy clogging to live traditional music. Bring the kids!

Baloji & L’Orchestra de la Katuba

BalojiwebCongolese-Belgian hip-hop artist Baloji, whose name means “sorcerer” in Swahili, mixes the suavity of Congolese rumba, the sweat and funk of James Brown, lilting soukous guitar, the visual flair of the sapeurs and the sensibilities of 21st century rap into an electrifying stage presence with style to spare. He masterfully repaints his Afro-soul-jazz-folk roots with worldly colors and elegant rhythms. “This isn’t world music,” he says. “This is our music.” This tour is supported in part by the globalFEST Touring Fund: globalFEST.org.

The Barefoot Movement

SONY DSCThe Barefoot Movement is an acoustic quartet from Johnson City, TN which fuses folk, bluegrass, old-time, Americana and rock to create an eclectic sound featuring interweaving harmonies and progressive instrumentation. From foot-stomping instrumentals to heart rendering ballads, their lush vocals, tasteful musicianship and memorable melodies take listeners beyond traditional ideas and arrangements with bountiful expressions of spirit and heart.

Ben Sollee

bensolle.webBen Sollee is a classically trained cellist who rose to prominence with the Sparrow Quartet (with Bela Fleck, Abigail Washburn and Casey Driessen) before breaking stereotypes by launching his folk singer/songwriter career. His soulful vocals and impressionistic lyrics animate his classical crossover, exploring post-modern jazz and Appalachian mountain music one minute, retro R&B and rompin’ stompin’ country the next. His adventurous and earnest songwriting portrays a contagiously optimistic worldview.

Big Fat Gap

bigfatgap.webBig Fat Gap is a back porch bluegrass band that has no plans to take Nashville by storm. Some of them even have day jobs. These Chapel Hill natives just like to pick, they like each other, and it shows. Their shows are excellent for sweet three-part harmonies, smoking solos, and captivating stage dynamics. Their fun performances bring loyal fans back for more. Their name derives from one of the few remaining stands of old growth virgin forest, located in western North Carolina located in the Big Fat Gap in Graham County near the Tennessee border.

BIG Something

BigSomething.webCrafting a powerful signature sound of arena sized rock grooves, dirty funk and dance rhythms layered with lush electronic embellishments and soulfully triumphant vocals, BIG Something’s sound is driven by relentless jams, excellent musicianship and a spirit of fun. With humorous and pointed lyrics, strong hooks and a sense of flair, these Burlington, NC natives combine guitar, synth and saxophone into rich rock-’n’roll grooves dripping with soul, jazz and fusion flavors.

The Brothers Comatose

The Brothers Comatose play rousing and unpredictable bluegrass-influenced folk rock. Their San Francisco sound hails from the mountains but their collective vibe is all about community. Fiddle-burnin’ and string-pluckin’, they exude a foot-stomping, shout-along ease, with raucous music designed for dancing and celebration.

The Bulltown Strutters

BullTown.webThe Bulltown Strutters are a community parade band bringing the street band traditions of New Orleans to their own home in Durham. The 20-member group urges the audience to join them in parade, dance, and merry-making. Since 2010, they’ve been bursting out hip-shaking, smile-making boogie music. Dance along at their Saturday afternoon pre-parade show or catch them in the Dance Tent on Friday night!

Bubba Norwood

James "Bubba" Norwood IIRenowned for his long-time association with the Ike and Tina Turner Revue in the ’60s, drummer James “Bubba” Norwood has anchored the rhythm section for a veritable Who’s Who of blues, soul, and R&B greats. Raised in Chapel Hill, his powerful, driving drumbeats have propelled legendary artists including Marvin Gaye, Gladys Knight, Curtis Mayfield, Albert King and Little Richard. Bubba will be performing as part of the Music Maker Revue.

Captain Luke

Bluesman Luther Mayer, known as “Captain Luke,” is blessed with a deep natural baritone. His music and art are rooted firmly in the African-American working class of the Carolina Piedmont, and the mystique of his message refers continually to the blues experience. He explores the broad ranges of the idiom, from its roots in the deep country all the way to its modern pop/showbiz manifestations. This unusual musical convergence could be called Outsider Lounge Music – basic and sophisticated in the same moment. Captain Luke will be performing as part of the Music Maker Revue.

The Chit Nasty Band

chitnasty_webBringing together a beautiful fusion of funk, soul, rock, jazz and blues, the Durham-based Chit Nasty Band inspires audiences through upbeat lyrics and expert musicianship. Their trademark sound harkens back to the powerful funk bands of the ’70s and ’80s but adds a contemporary flair to their Rick James-meets-Little Richard vibe, yielding a brand of funky rock and playful soul that will quicken your pulse and make your spirit soar. With tongue in cheek and a tongue in your ear, their nasty laser soulstorm of gospel chops will make you move in ways you never expected.

Chocolate Suede Waltz Dance

chocolatesuede.webChocolate Suede is a Triangle-based band playing partnered waltz, blues and fusion dance music. Spanning jazz, Latin, bluegrass, Celtic, soul and more, their influences span the vast history of music. With members from a variety of renowned local bands including Shakori Hills alumni The Ayr Mountaineers, Jonathan Byrd’s band and more, this creative collective seamlessly navigates genres to bring you rich, dark, velvety, organic, hot Chocolate Suede that’s ready to sweep you off your feet and wear out your dancing shoes!

Clockwork Kids

clockworkkids.webChapel Hill rockers Clockwork Kids detour indie modernism down psychedelic ’60s avenues, balancing their massive triple-guitar attack with haunting hooks in the grand southern tradition of R.E.M. Their neo-psychedelic indie swagger balances their introspective shoegazing lyricism and pushes the envelope of fun and powerful college rock with waves of youthful energy.

Cortadito

Cortadito.webCortadito is a traditional Cuban Son group which focuses on performing the music of early Cuban origins. From Son Montuno to Boleros and Bolero Son, this dynamic band brings you back to a time when Trio Matamoros and Ignacio Piñiero ruled the airwaves – an era when popular music was Cuban Music and Son Montuno was influencing the world over. From time to time Cortadito is backed by a variety of guest musicians which gives the group a sound reminiscent of the Buena Vista Social Club.

Deep Chatham

Deep Chatham features ferociously talented songwriters churning out original material characterized by driving rhythms, intricate harmonies, and haunting melodies. The power quartet has quickly gained a reputation for their high energy live performances and infectiously catchy songs. Their sound is born out of bluegrass and folk traditions that rely heavily on vocal harmonies, upright-driven rhythms and gothic songwriting, with leanings towards ghostly minor-key progressions and gypsy-tinged melodies.

The Del McCoury Band

delUndeniably one of the most talented, revered and vital groups in bluegrass history, Shakori Hills is thrilled to welcome back the Del McCoury Band. Born in Bakersville, NC, McCoury is a national treasure who has been the epitome of the “high lonesome sound” for over four decades, including a stint as lead singer for Bill Monroe’s Blue Grass Boys. With a sound encompassing shades of blues and gospel, his crowds run the gamut from tie-dyed neo-hippie jammers to button-down yuppies to suspendered good ol’ boys. The band’s instrumental and vocal firepower, deep-rooted dedication to bluegrass heritage, consummate showmanship, and high spirits continue to spread their influence. With sons Ronnie and Rob by his side, their impeccable bluegrass virtuosity remains as stunning as ever. McCoury and his band have won more International Bluegrass Music Association awards than any other artist in history.

Des Ark

desark.webDuring the last decade, Aimée Collet Argote has had more bands called Des Ark than she has albums under that name. She’s howled and jerked in sweaty houses and rock clubs, backed by a drummer, another drummer, yet another drummer and a second guitarist, and a small symphony. She’s brought big crowds to a whisper with nothing but her voice and a banjo or a tiny guitar that kept slipping out of tune. And though it perennially confuses the crap out of crowds expecting one thing & getting the other, she somehow manages to maintain these two separate Des Ark’s — different songs, utterly different audience experience — and the dissonance & tension in turn somehow binds together in a brilliant display of songwriting.

Diali Cissokho & Kaira Ba

Diali Cissokho and Kaira Ba play music inspired by the ancient West-African griot tradition. Led by the kora, a 21-stringed harp-lute, this highly original blend of traditional and modern styles creates an infectious sound reminiscent of West African dance bands – full of unison melody, adventurous improvisation, fiery solos and polyrhythmic frameworks. With songs that build, spiral and surge into moments of sudden triumph, Cissokho plays his kora with rock-like exuberance, accompanied by the unrelenting polyrhythmic funk of the rhythm section.

Dirty Dozen Brass Band

DirtyDozenBrassBand.webSince 1977, New Orleans’ most famous and innovative horn collective has revitalized and revolutionized the brass band style by incorporating funk and bebop into traditional sounds, influencing everyone in their wake. They’ve done it all, from straight Crescent City jazz and restless funky experimentation to spirited parade rhythms, R&B, hip hop and rock. The Dirty Dozen set the bar high in mixing jazz and joy, with crackling second-line rhythms, bumping sousaphone basslines, and an uncanny ability to shift from boiling low-down gumbo to warmhearted cool jazz. Their inspiring improvisations and rollicking upbeat positivity are as wildly rich and wonderfully unpredictable as New Orleans itself.

DJ Gonzo

DJ_Gonzo_webSoul and hip hop crate digger DJ Gonzo, born Aharon Segal, is a DJ and turntablist from Raleigh who chops and meshes soul, hip hop & R&B sounds into his own artistic vision. This old-school purist was an actual radio DJ whose mixtape series blew up nationally, leading to a tour with hip hop group M1 Platoon and even a percussion role with local folkies The Tender Fruit.

DJ Richard McVay

Richard McVay is Miami’s premiere vinyl DJ, with a career pedigree nurtured in the greatest nightclubs of the city alongside many of its seediest dive bars. With an eclectic collection of music ranging from Gregorian chants to the latest musings of Cee Lo, Richard spins a weave of music that transcends time to create a mystical intoxication of sensual auditory expression. Music lovers rejoice and dance!

Donna the Buffalo

From Cajun to country, reggae to improv, zydeco boogie to roots-rock riot, Donna the Buffalo aims for the best of what music has to offer. Their singular sound features upbeat grooves, inspirational lyrics, memorable hooks, superb musicianship and an overwhelming sense of celebration. They’re an American institution, socially conscious yet eternally danceable. Donna the Buffalo started the GrassRoots Festival over 20 years ago outside of Ithaca, NY to raise money for local charities and showcase the sounds of their friends and inspirations from around the world. The band features multi-instrumentalist Tara Nevins, guitarist Jeb Puryear, keyboardist Dave McCracken, bassist Kyle Spark and drummer Mark Raudabaugh.

Dr. Bacon

Dr.Bacon.webDr. Bacon is a genre-defying Appalachian soul-grass band from Boone playing an infectiously danceable blend of energetic, acoustic-driven rock ‘n’ roll. Their sound is a rollicking amalgam of bluegrass, soul, funk, hip hop, blues, jazz, folk and more, with traditional bluegrass instrumentation augmented with harmonicas, horns, jaw-harps and kazoos. Their unique and intricate sound is a multicultural joyous shout from the mountaintops.

Driftwood

DriftwoodIn a post-modern world of skyscrapers and handheld computers, Driftwood looks beneath the concrete and circuitry to find their sound. Based in Binghamton, NY, their unique blend of old-time folk with modern and world music features blazing fiddle action, boundaryless banjo, booming upright bass and gleeful guitar alongside a scrap wood kick box, clapping hands and stomping feet.

Elizabeth Cook

ElizabethCook.webBorn in Wildwood, FL, country singer/songwriter Elizabeth Cook had her own band at age 9 and has appeared on The Grand Ole Opry over 100 times. Her clear, beautiful voice and strong songwriting earns comparisons to classic country divas like Loretta Lynn and Dolly Parton. With a complete command of the power, grit and honesty of pure old-time country, her sound careens well outside the bounds of Opryland, shifting from waltzes and bluegrassy numbers to alt-country, pop ballads, and flat-out rockers.

Elkland Art Center Puppets

Located in rural Appalachia between Boone and West Jefferson, NC, the non-profit Elkland Art Center was founded in 1997 with a mission to build community and art simultaneously, and to use art as a means for world improvement. They provide a multitude of opportunities for creative expression and fun, including parades, walkabouts, puppet shows, workshops, documentary video services, and a solar-powered puppet caravan. They even host an International Puppet Festival!

The Five Points Rounders

Tfivepointsrounders.webhe Five Points Rounders are a young, high-energy old-time band who came together in Durham to launch a series of “Rowdy Square Dances.” They brought the revered tradition to a new generation by dusting off the old tunes and dance moves and repackaging them to suit a younger sensibility while still appealing to longtime fans and connoisseurs. These kindred old souls play fast and loose, propelling the dancers into a frenzy of swingin’, foot-stompin’, hootin’ and hollerin’.

Greg Humphreys

Singer/songwriter Greg Humphreys’ mad mix of stylistically diverse songs move from roots-pop and straight-up blues to country and bluegrass, using pop hooks and his soulful voice to showcase his spirit and sound. The Hobex and Dillon Fence frontman takes you on a musical journey that is disarming, personal and intimately engaging. His newest trio includes bassist Matt Brandau and drummer Keith Robinson.

Harvey Arnold

HarveyArnold.webHarvey Arnold is a singer, guitarist and North Carolina native who has a lifelong passion for the blues. He first rose to fame in the 1970s selling millions of albums as bassist for the Southern rock band The Outlaws who played Madison Square Garden and opened for the Rolling Stones. He later formed his own blues band based around his top-shelf vocal abilities and his powerful slide riffs on both electric and acoustic guitars. He will be playing as part of the Music Maker Revue.

Indigo Girls

indigowebGrammy-winning folk-rock duo Indigo Girls deliver beautifully crafted songs that revel in their graceful mix of openhearted songwriting and lush, intricate arrangements. Intimate and honest to the point of discomfort, their musical meld of contemporary folk, country-ish sounds, and aching harmonies are the pair’s trademark. Their complex compositions feature richly textured storytelling and untamed voices surging with power, yet laced with a spirited simplicity. By turns abstract and spiritual or abrasive and direct, the duo’s dreamy serenity and moody ruminations display a fierce longing for a more idyllic existence while still celebrating the extraordinary in everyday living.

The Iron Mountain Messengers

Iron Mountain Messengers.webChapel Hill-based bluegrass stalwart Charles Pettee, whose career spans nearly 30 years leading groups such as The Shady Grove Band and Charles Pettee & FolkPsalm, emerges with his latest project The Iron Mountain Messengers. Showcasing music both new and old, his distinctive baritone voice and expressive mandolin stylings combine to create blistering instrumentals and rich, sophisticated acoustic arrangements. One of North Carolina’s musical treasures, Pettee combines virtuoso musical execution with a down-home persona and a true devotion to the music.

Ironing Board Sam

A truly engaging blues performer, Ironing Board Sam is playing as part of the Music Maker Revue. His powerfully soulful voice and remarkable piano prowess remain undiminished half a century after starting out from Rock Hill, SC. A hybrid between Little Richard, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins and Ray Charles, his long and storied history includes inventing his own instruments, playing with wind-up monkey rhythm sections and flaming drummers, and performing inside an 8-foot tall jukebox and underwater in a giant aquarium.

Jim Lauderdale

708301.tifThey call him “alt.country,” “Americana,” and even “Y’all-ternative.” We don’t know exactly what any of that stuff means, so we mostly just call him “Jim.” (It’s shorter, and he said we could.) In a world where modern country music is about as exciting as a warm, flat can of Bud Light, our buddy Jim stands out like a shot of White Lightning.

Jon Shain Trio

jonshain_webCombining Piedmont blues with bluegrass, folk, swing and ragtime, Durham-based singer/songwriter Jon Shain crosses rich musical terrain, taking us on a breezy ride through the history of American music. With authentic Southern seasoning and country compassion, his warm acoustic fingerpicking and charmingly insightful blues-influenced lyrics are executed exceptionally. His approach is equal parts humorous, love struck and world-weary, all with a homespun flair.

J.P. Harris & The Tough Choices

JPHarris.webYou thought country music ain’t what it used to be. Think again. J.P. Harris and The Tough Choices have been resurrecting the ghosts of a time when real, hardcore honky-tonk ruled the airwaves, a time before the words “pop” or “new” ever met the word “country.” Harris writes with the humor, grit and grace that only a true road-worn author can summon.

Kamara Thomas

Kamara.webDurham-based Kamara Thomas writes astro-religious songspells and hypnotic musical tales culled from ancient songlines and dreamtimes. Channeling dusty Americana, rootsy folk and classic rock, she spins hazy narrative paeans to America’s epic landscape and mythic past. Her bewitching live performances incorporate intricate vocal harmonies, Native American shamanism, cosmic trance-inducing jams, mountain songs and spellbinding stories of the fabled Old West.

Lacquered for Shine

randydean.smRandy Dean Whitt is an eclectic singer/songwriter from the American Southeast whose blend of rock and Americana combines his root elements into unique sounds. His new quartet, Lacquered for Shine, features some of the best local musicians on the scene, and aims to coat the world with the shining sensation and aural stimulation of a new kind of jam.

The Last Bison

lastbison.webChesapeake, VA-based acoustic collective The Last Bison combines classical strings, tribal percussion and alternative indie-folk songwriting to create stoic and spirited mountaintop chamber music. Blending rootsy, atmospheric Americana with homespun theatricality and uncalculated exuberance, their expansive and hybrid sound casts a darkly pastoral spell. Beautiful lyrics coupled with complex arrangements deliver eminently listenable songs with passion and sensitivity.

Leyla McCalla

LeylaMcCalla_webBorn in New York City to Haitian parents, singer and multi-instrumentalist Leyla McCalla moved to New Orleans to play Bach pieces on cello on the streets of the French Quarter. She later became part of the Music Maker blues family, accompanied Mos Def at Carnegie Hall, and played old-time string band music in the Carolina Chocolate Drops’ touring band. She continues the cultural continuum between Haiti and Louisiana with her newest album “Vari-Colored Songs,” with pieces written to the poetry of Langston Hughes alongside traditional Haitian numbers sung in Creole and yearning originals brimming with the pizzicato warmth of her cello.

Liquid Sound

LiquidSound.webA quarter century after disbanding, Chapel Hill/Pittsboro jamband pioneers Liquid Sound are reuniting for one show at the Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival. They helped lay the groundwork in the mid- to late-’80s for what would become the jamband scene, playing a mix of originals and Grateful Dead-related cover songs with a freewheeling sense of musical adventure. Time hasn’t diminished their raw power or their uncanny ability to sync together to create a groovy, danceable, liquid sound.

MC Yogi

MC Yogi at Gandhi Mural, San FranciscoMC Yogi combines his love of yoga with hip hop, reggae, electronica, dancehall & dub, making him a pioneer in the fusion of Ancient Yogic Science & Modern Street Culture. With themes promoting Hindu philosophy, his energetic show offers a rare blend of hip hop with kirtan – a call-and-response performed in India’s bhakti devotional traditions. Think Beastie Boys meets Krishna Das. “Y’all ready to shake your asana?!”

Mint Julep Jazz Band

MintJulep.webWith their little big band lineup of 4 horns, rhythm section and vocals, the Mint Julep Jazz Band recreate the classic hot jazz and swing sounds of the ’20s-’40s with sparkling new arrangements. Based in Durham and led by artful trombonist Lucian Cobb and dynamite vocalist/swing DJ Laura Windley, their beautifully precise sound embodies all the subtle mysteries of swing rhythm. They’ve created the ideal dance band – their own sweet style with a serious rhythmic underpinning. They’ve even had their music on Sesame Street!

Morning Brigade

morningbrigade.webYoung Chapel Hill sextet Morning Brigade employs piano, violin, cello and softly cooed co-ed harmonies to add ornate touches to tunes that explode from delicate, restrained baroque folk into blasts of bustling orchestral indie rock. Their ambitious songs are nuanced yet hooky, creating an autumnal acoustic pop sound both epic and intimate. Lyrically and melodically complex, yet meticulously funky and insistently catchy, they straddle the line between simplistic structure and grandiose embellishments.

Music Maker Revue

Music Maker Relief Foundation is a Hillsborough-based nonprofit organization dedicated to helping the true pioneers and forgotten heroes of Southern musical traditions gain recognition and meet their day-to-day needs. Music Maker’s aid and service programs improve the quality of recipients’ lives, affirming to these artists that we value the gifts of music and inspiration they’ve delivered to the world. Music Maker’s mission is to give back to the roots of American music. This spring Music Maker will bring Captain Luke, Ironing Board Sam, Ron Hunter,  Pat “Mother Blues” Cohen, Harvey Arnold and Bubba Norwood to Shakori Hills.

Napoleon Wright II

NapoleonWrightII.webNapoleon Wright II is a music producer, vocalist, and motion designer based out of Raleigh, NC. Growing up a military child, Napoleon’s travels allowed him to develop a sensitive palette for music and the arts. Having previously been mostly behind the scenes producing and collaborating with other artists, Napoleon released his second album ‘The Napoleon Complex’ last fall and plans to take a more forward facing stance with his music and creative endeavors.

Pat “Mother Blues” Cohen

For years, Pat “Mother Blues” Cohen sang in New Orleans six nights a week, performing at venues including the House of Blues, until Hurricane Katrina destroyed her home. She relocated to North Carolina where she unfurls the tapestry of her life experiences through her soulful words and music. A dramatic and exotic performer, she shares the mettle, pathos and ocean-deep compassion of the famous female blues singers who inspired her – women like Billie Holiday, Koko Taylor and Etta James. She will be performing as part of the Music Maker Revue.

Phil Cook & The Guitarheels

philcook.webPhil Cook & the Guitarheels is a newly-formed North Carolina supergroup led by the former Megafaun keyboardist and composed of an all-star lineup of Shakori Hills alumni. Joining Cook to debut material from his upcoming solo album are Andrew Marlin (Mandolin Orange), Matt McCaughan (Bon Iver), Brad Cook (Megafaun), Bobby Britt (Town Mountain), James Wallace (Mount Moriah), and Terry Lonergan (Hiss Golden Messenger). Drawn to elements of folk, blues and country, this exciting collective plays from the heart while proudly carrying the torch of tradition into the 21st century.

Preston Frank

Accordionist Preston Frank has been laying down his blazing bayou boogie and unabashed, traditional Louisiana zydeco for decades. His trademark swamp groove is a combination of Cajun, funk and soul, a smooth and flowing Creole sound that instantly makes you start to move. The jumping rhythms and festive vibes rest in his hands while his fingers work magic on the diatonic accordion. Firmly planted in his musical roots for over forty years, Preston Frank remains an important force in preserving traditional zydeco and Creole French music.

Ranford Almond

Self-taught 13-year-old acoustic guitarist Ranford Almond hails from Browns Summit, NC and has already made a name for himself with gigs at MerleFest and Ziggy’s among many other festivals and venues. With sweet fingerpicking and a voice already rich in soul, he plays a captivating mixture of originals sprinkled with Americana, folk, country and rock classics.

Richie Stearns & Rosie Newton

Richie Stearns and Rosie Newton are two dynamic musicians performing gorgeous music rooted in the Americana tradition. As a member of bands including Donna the Buffalo and The Horse Flies, Stearns became a lynchpin of much of today’s American roots music revival. With their sweet harmonies and innovative arrangements, Newton’s elegant voice and glittering fiddle complements Stearns’ mantra-groove spooky banjo as they expand the boundaries of traditional music. Together, they create a sound that is sometimes ethereal and sometimes just plain ol’ down home.

Rising Appalachia

RisingAppalachia.webNew Orleans-based sisters Leah and Chloe Smith play their own interpretation of Appalachian music, merging art with activism while mixing folk, soul, hip hop, classical, southern gospel and more into their own singular sound. They tear into the music with sensual prowess, boasting soulful and poetic vocals and eclectic instrumentation. They bring to the world new stories and songs sculpted to embody our human journey and our global community.

Rooster Logic

RoosterLogic.webRooster Logic’s music is a fun and funky blend of original songs and unexpected covers that transcend genres. The Chatham County-based outfit mixes together the sounds of Memphis soul, garage pop, blues, girl groups, folk and rock ‘n’ roll into a crisp sound full of lush harmonies, clever lyrics, and pop hooks. Vocally rich and musically versatile, their frequent odd turns follow their own brand of logic.

Roseland

Roseland.webRoseland is an Americana roots rock band from Greensboro chock full of jangly melodies, spot-on harmonies and killer hooks. They deliver a healthy dose of classic country, folk and rock elements that pay homage to artists like Crosby Stills Nash & Young, Gram Parsons and Tom Petty as well as alternative staples such as the Jayhawks and Teenage Fanclub. Their infectious rhythms, catchy refrains and memorable guitar explorations display a musical maturity that harkens back to a more honest time in music.

Shamu Garcon

ShamuGarcon.webDurham-based Shamu Garcon play a spirited version of traditional Louisiana Cajun dance music on the fiddle, accordion, guitar & triangle. Their high-energy two-steps and lilting waltzes will fill your night with pure Mardi Gras revelry!

Spam Allstars

spamallstars.webSpam Allstars are one of the premiere pioneers of the new Miami fusion sound. The 9-piece Latin, funk, hip hop, dub and electronica band blends improvisational elements with horns, turntables and Pythonesque humour to create what they call an electronic descarga. Their highly danceable and wide-reaching sound is pure funky fusion!

 

Tonk

tonk.webFeaturing pianist Greg Readling from Chatham County Line and guitarist Jay Brown from Tift Merritt’s band, Tonk was formed with a deep love for ‘60s and ‘70s country and honky-tonk masters like Ray Price, Merle Haggard, Waylon Jennings and Johnny Paycheck. While grounded in tradition, their live shows feature hot shuffles, cool swing, devastating ballads and rattling tales of heartbreak. Stout basslines and flourishing pedal steel licks reveal playful songwriting yet a powerful sound that unravels with each wry twang.

Toon & The Real Laww

ToonLaww.webDurham rappers/producers Toon & The Real Laww were born to entertain. Winner of the 2013 Carolina Music Awards for Best Male Hip Hop Artist, The Real Laww is also a former Marine who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. They see rap as a force for justice, and these righteous rap ambassadors have hosted benefit concerts for the Wounded Warriors Project and for victims of domestic violence alongside founding the annual DURM Hip Hop Summit. Their captivating live performances will take you on a journey of the heart and mind.

Shakori Hills Vinyl Lounge

vinyllounge2The Shakori Hills Vinyl Lounge features local DJs spinning night-time grooves between Meadow Stage sets next door and after the last band has retired into the moonlight. With a beer stand right alongside, it’s the perfect place to mellow out with friends and dance to your favorite timeless tunes and the deepest rare cuts. Near Meadow Stage, throughout the festival. Don’t miss “Simmer Down: Reggae Dancehall,” 2 special Vinyl Lounge presented sets (Grove Stage Thursday 11pm-midnight and Dance Tent Saturday 10:30-11-45pm) featuring Selector B Steady, DJ Ras J, DJ Dias & DJ Kahleeb spinning 100% vinyl, dance-oriented Jamaican scorchers.

The Vinyl Lounge will also be supporting the Alpha Boys School. The Alpha Boys’ School was alphaboysschoolfounded in the 1880′s in Kingston, Jamaica as a home for orphans and wayward boys with a mission to provide them with an education and practical training. The school’s legacy is the musical education it fostered as many of Jamaica’s best musicians are graduates, including 4 of the founding members of the Skatalites.

Local DJ and Jamaican music advocate Brennan Barber aka Selector B Steady will host a booth in the Shakori Hills Vinyl Lounge for the Alpha Boys School, offering original t-shirts made by the currently enrolled Alpha boys as well as CD’s and records with 100% of the proceeds going back to the school. For more information visit www.alphaboysschool.org or stop by the lounge.

 

And, of course, more…

Band bios lovingly composed and/or edited by Paul Kerr. Thanks, Paul!