Office Manager Patty Levesque has worked for Xpress for 20 years (pictured here, 1st row, far right).

Twenty years, day in and day out

Having worked at Mountain Xpress for 20 years, I have seen many changes — in staff, in technology, in delegation of duties and, of course, in the growth of the paper. Back when I started in 1994, Xpress had only a dozen employees or so, and not all were full-time. Jeff Fobes, our publisher, oversaw […]

How citizen-based reporting got the news

In the early ’90s, more than 20 people filed for the Asheville City Council primary election. Instead of Mountain Xpress reporters interviewing the candidates, the paper asked for community volunteers to help. A group of volunteers met with Julian Price in an upstairs room on Page Avenue. We were given a set of questions to […]

NOT YOUR STANDARD FESTIVAL FARE: M.C. Taylor of Hiss Golden Messenger, pictured, joins the Transfigurations II lineup, which includes locals Angel Olsen and Reigning Sound along with Seattle grunge survivors Mudhoney, the retro soul of Lee Fields & the Expressions and more. Photo courtesy of Merge Records

Harvest Records celebrates a decade in business with Transfigurations II music festival

Although “pretty much everybody” told them it wasn’t a good idea, Matt Schnable and Mark Capon opened Harvest Records in 2004. “We were just out of college and pretty headstrong about it,” says Schnable. “We figured even if were open just a year, at least we had seen something through.” The West Asheville-based store was […]

Vol. 1, Issue 1 (Mountain Xpress, Aug. 10, 1994)

Chasing crack rabbits

Grace Slick sang, “One pill makes you larger, the other makes you small. And the ones that mother gives you don’t do anything at all,” on Jefferson Airplane’s “White Rabbit,” cementing the figurative connection between Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and the ’60s drug culture. Perhaps that’s why an educational anti-drug video, produced 20 […]

Tapping into the local debate

In the days before commenting on websites, Facebook and other social-media platforms, Mountain Xpress got readers talking each week. Every issue featured two, three and sometimes four commentaries, often from wildly different worldviews. The Aug. 31, 1994, Xpress featured four, including the first “Gospel According to Jerry [Sternberg].” Readers reacted strongly to Sternberg’s support for […]

Republican Statehouse Rep. Nathan Ramsey and Democratic challenger John Ager. Photo by Alicia Funderburk.

Statehouse candidates debate: Ramsey vs. Ager

There wasn’t much tension between Nathan Ramsey  and John Ager at the Council of Independent Business Owners’s early-morning debate, Friday, Aug. 29 perhaps because of a personal history. “John’s my neighbor,” said Ramsey. “I’ve known John since I was probably about two years old.” Not only are the two candidates personal acquaintances, both grew up in the […]