Carl Jones (Master-in-Residence, Master Recital Wednesday 1:30 Big Room) is a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist born in Macon, Georgia who now makes Hillsville, Virginia home. He is widely respected for his instrumental talents and original songs about the joys and tribulations of life in the south. Carl’s songs have been recorded by Kate Campbell, Rickie Simpkins with Tony Rice, and others. His song Last Time On The Road is on the Grammy Award winning album Unleashed by The Nashville Bluegrass Band. Carl has recorded with fiddler James Bryan and with Norman & Nancy Blake. For many years now he has recorded and toured with his wife, fiddler Erynn Marshall. Their latest releases are Old Tin and Old Time Sweethearts Vol 1 & 2.
Sarah & Ron Howard (Visiting Masters, Master Recital Tuesday 1:30, Big Room) from Perry County, Kentucky come from a family steeped in mountain gospel and Old Regular Baptist line singing. Sarah is a gospel and ballad singer, fiddler and educator. At 13 Sarah studied fiddle with Ray Slone through a Kentucky Folklife apprenticeship. She and her brother, Ron, first attended CCMMS in 2003, with Sarah learning fiddle from Art Stamper and Ron getting started on clawhammer banjo. Sarah joined the CCMMS faculty in 2007 and has taught fiddle and together with Ron, old time stringband and harmony singing. They perform and record with their parents and Ron’s his wife Kinsee as the Howard Family, a bluegrass gospel string band.
Cornbread & Tortillas (Visiting Masters, Master Recital Thursday 1:30, Big Room) is a collective of Appalachian and Latino artists based in Kentucky whose mission is to build community through art, music, dance and cultural heritage. In addition to Carla Gover (Artistic Director) and Arlo Barnette (Intermediate Guitar) and his wife, fiddler and bassist Zoey, CCMMS students will enjoy performances and workshops with Fernando Moya from Ecuador, a master of the Andean flute and the churango; Marlon Obando, guitarist and craftsman from Nicaragua; Ballet Folklorico dancer Paulina Vazquez of Whitesburg with roots in Mexico; and Yani Vozos from Estill County who plays guitar, mandolin and charango.
And just a few of our workshop leaders:
Randy Wilson (Roving Storyteller) from Leslie County, Kentucky, is a talented multi-instrumentalist, dance caller and story teller. He recently retired after decades of engaging public school kids in Leslie and Knott Counties with traditional and home made music, storytelling and dance. Randy has also taught at Hindman’s Family Folk Week. He performed and recorded Heritage on June Appal Records with the late poet James Still. In 2003 he appeared at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington, D.C. and in 2007 at the Festival of American Fiddle Tunes in Port Townsend, Washington.
Carla Gover (Artistic Director, Beginning Flatfoot Dance, Monday 3:30) is a seventh-generation Kentuckian who is known for her music and for showcasing the rhythms of Appalachia through clogging and clawhammer banjo. She shares her passion with hundreds of students each year in schools throughout Kentucky, where she teaches Appalachian music and dance, and explores with students the diverse cultural influences and elements that have shaped our state and nation. An award-winning singer-songwriter, she has covers by major artists as well as songs in film and documentary soundtracks, and six full-length albums under her belt. She performs with a variety of ensembles, including the bands Zoe Speaks and CornMaiz String Band. She is the Artistic Director for the Cornbread & Tortillas Collective of Appalachian and Latinx artists, and she was recently selected as a Master Artist in Traditional Flatfoot Dancing by the Kentucky Arts Council.
George Gibson ( Workshop on Banjo History Thursday 3:30) grew up on Burgey’s Creek in Knott County, Kentucky, a community with a rich musical heritage. He learned banjo from listening to his father, uncle and many neighbors. George’s playing uses a driving and complex drop-thumb style strum, two- and three-finger picking and a wide variety of tunings. He has performed widely at regional festivals including the Festival of American Fiddle Tunes, the Florida Old Time Music Championships, Augusta, and Home Craft Days. His 2000 June Appal release Last Possum Up the Tree reflects the unique repertoire of Knott County.
Big Cowan Old Regular Baptist Church (Tuesday 3:30 at the church) graciously welcomes CCMMS students and faculty each year for an afternoon workshop of lined-out hymnody. Old Regular Baptist singing is an a capella style which originated in Scotland and represents one of Appalachia’s oldest singing traditions. If you haven’t heard it, take a listen: