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Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper & Jonah Riddle & Carolina Express – Blue Ridge Music Center
July 27 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper
The world tends to look at accomplishments in the form of accolades and although only in his mid-30’s, Michael Cleveland, a 2018 GRAMMY Nominee, has plenty to his credit. After picking up the fiddle at age 4, Michael’s musical momentum began to propel him forward towards early success. “When I started taking lessons at age 4,” he remembers, “I told the teacher right up front that I wanted to learn how to play bluegrass and I wanted to play ‘Orange Blossom Special.’” Reluctant as they were, his teachers quickly found reason to his rhyme, helping him progress to the point when, at age 9, Michael was invited to sit in with the legendary Bill Monroe at the Bean Blossom Bluegrass Festival.
Michael Cleveland brings dynamic traditional bluegrass to the stage with his award-winning band, Flamekeeper, in a show that will leave the audience talking. An 11-time winner of the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Fiddle Performer of the Year award, Mike and his talented band present a program of tight vocal trios and duos, blistering instrumentals, and fiddle-and-banjo duets that echo the first-generation stars of bluegrass. The show is rounded out with Mike’s dry wit and the band’s sense of fun.A feature-length documentary has bee made telling the story of Michael Cleveland and his determination to overcome disability (Official release date is March 1st). For more information on the film, go to FlamekeeperFilm.com.
Jonah Riddle & Carolina Express
From the hills of Western North Carolina, two brothers set out to show the world their brand of bluegrass music, as so many brother duets have done before them. Jonah, age 18, and Grayson, age 14, grew up playing gospel bluegrass in their church services. From the very beginning the brothers clung to the roots of the music, something that many young pickers tend to overlook. The love for the music pushed Jonah to start his own band, Jonah Riddle and Carolina Express.
Jonah takes care of banjo duties in the group, playing a style that is quickly fading away in todays business. You can easily hear the Stanley, Scruggs, and Osborne influences in his sound, the sounds of the pioneers! Grayson is on guitar and does all of the groups lead singing. Graysons style of guitar playing will take you back to the days of the great Jimmy Martin; strong, steady rhythm, full of all the runs that helps make bluegrass what it is! The Brothers father, Benjie, holds down upright bass duties for the band.
Jonah and Grayson have had the privilege of picking on stage with many great artists: Doyle Lawson, Darin & Brooke Aldridge, Balsam Range, Ralph Stanley II, Nu Blue, Ricky Skaggs, and J.D. Crowe. They have performed at many concerts and venues across the country, including: The Ryman Auditorium Courtyard, Dollywood, the North Carolina State Fair in Raleigh, Woodsongs, the Lyric Theatre in Kentucky, Houstonfest, the North Carolina State Bluegrass Festival, Bluegrass First Class in Asheville, North Carolina, the Earl Scruggs Center, the Pickin Porch, Tennessee Fall Homecoming, the Carter Fold and the World-Renown WDVX Blue Plate Special in Knoxville, TN. Jonah and Grayson are also members of Tomorrows Bluegrass Stars and have performed at IBMA Kids on Bluegrass in Raleigh, North Carolina. They have won several awards during the time they have been performing such as Best of Show and individual awards for playing their instruments as well.
$15 Adult – General Admission
Children 12 and Under – Free