LOCAL STAR: Ernest Helton, left, a West Asheville-based musician of Native American heritage, performed “Royal Clog” for Okeh Records. He and his brother Osey, also seen in this circa-1940 photo, were often featured at the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival.

Celebratin­g the 1925 Okeh recording sessions in Asheville

The Okeh Record sessions that took place in Asheville nearly 100 years ago. The New York-based label, in a bid to discover lesser-known Southern musicians, took trips to various locations where, with a portable studio, its engineers pressed wax test records. The Asheville session, held the last week of August in 1925, attracted musicians and vocalists from around the region, their styles ranging from jazz and minstrel offerings to gospel and country. A Friday, Aug. 28 concert and talk commemorates the recordings.

Murder ballads and Moog guitars-attachment0

Murder ballads and Moog guitars

Local fiddler Rayna Gellert has performed with Uncle Earl, Abigail Washburn and Toubab Krewe; she’s recorded with Sara Watkins, Loudon Wainwright III and John Paul Jones among others. Now she’s set to drop her solo debut album, “Old Light,” with a special pre-release party (including advance copies of the CD) at the Grey Eagle on Sept. 4. Photo by Jon Estes.