Around town: Local musicians pay tribute to John Prine

IN SPITE OF OURSELVES: Husband-and-wife duo Chuck and Gill Knott, center, are hosting the second annual tribute to John Prine at The Grey Eagle on Tuesday, Oct. 10, 7 p.m. Photo by Andy Hall

A deep love for the music of late Americana artist John Prine is something Chuck and Gill Knott shared in common when they first met in 2017. The husband-and-wife duo, known as the Knotty G’s, will host their second annual tribute to Prine on his birthday, Tuesday, Oct. 10, 7 p.m., at The Grey Eagle.

Celebrating John Prine with The Knotty G’s, an all-ages, partially seated show, will also feature local heavy hitters Felix Pastorius, Lyndsay Pruett, Jackson Dulaney, Daniel Combs, Jeff Sipe and other special guests.

Prine’s music has become a staple of the Knotty G’s’ repertoire, and during the pandemic, they hosted a livestream on social media called “Gospel Sundays,” which also included a lot of his songs. After his death, says Chuck, they wanted to throw a party in appreciation of Prine’s songwriting in Asheville with some of their favorite musicians. “Gill pitched the idea to The Grey Eagle. … We couldn’t think of a better room in Asheville to play such revered songs, as it’s the perfect balance of a listening room that can turn into a hootenanny at the drop of a hat.”

“We’ve got some sparse and emotional arrangements in the works and some reworking of some songs that we think will tickle a lot of folks’ fancies,” says Gill. “We’ve also really beefed up our lineup of special guests this year to feature some totally different tones. We’ve got some bluesy stuff, some searing lead players coming in, and we’ve even got a horn section joining in on some really funky arrangements of some of our favorite upbeat songs of John’s.”

Chuck adds that they’re thrilled with the house band, including the new addition of drummer Jeff Sipe. “Talking about music with him is just the most enlivening thing.”

American highway gospel musician K.M. Fuller of the group Gold Rose will open the evening on the venue’s patio with Prine songs as well as originals.

The Grey Eagle is at 185 Clingman Ave. For more information, visit

A play on marriage

A new play from local playwright David Brendan Hopes and director Steven Samuels, Ben & Angela, will debut at the BeBe Theater on Thursday, Oct. 5, 7:30 p.m.

The Sublime Theater production stars two Asheville actors who are also a real-life couple, Scott Fisher and Kirby Gibson.

“No matter how long people have been doing it, marriage remains a mystery,” says Hopes. “In Ben & Angela, a young couple follows the twisty, sometimes hilarious road from first infatuation through the kinks and perils of living life together for the long haul.”

“Plays about true love tend to be … icky,” says Samuels. “Ben & Angela is anything but. … There’s darkness, yes, but it rises toward the light.”

The show runs Thursday-Saturday, Oct. 5-21, 7:30 p.m.

The BeBe Theatre is at 20 Commerce St. For more information, visit

Reading about religions

The Rev. Vicki Michela Garlock, local award-winning author and founder of the educational organization World Religions for Kids, has written a new children’s book.
ABCs of the World’s Religions, which focuses mainly on Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam — with the Baha’i faith and Indigenous/polytheistic traditions included — is geared toward school-age readers but is enlightening for all ages, says Garlock. “Religion and culture are inextricably intertwined,” she says in a press release. “Being a knowledgeable global citizen and a compassionate neighbor really requires knowing something about the world’s faith traditions.”
Garlock was the curriculum specialist and ordained minister of education for Jubilee! Community Church, where she developed a multifaith curriculum for kids.
For more information, visit

Hounds and heritage

Plott-Toberfest 2023, a fundraiser to benefit the Haywood County Historical & Genealogical Society and the Canton Historical Museum, will be held Thursday, Oct. 5, to Sunday, Oct. 8, at Sorrells Street Park in Canton. This inaugural event will celebrate North Carolina’s state dog, the Plott hound, as well as Haywood County’s German heritage.
The celebration will begin with an opening ceremony at 3:15 p.m. Thursday featuring speakers including Zeb Smathers, mayor of Canton, and Bob Plott — a descendant of Henry Plott, who brought the hounds to the area when he and his wife settled along the Pigeon River in the early 1800s.
Live performances throughout Friday and Saturday will include The Steubenville Tootlers, the J. Creek Cloggers, The JackTown Ramblers and An Evening of Bluegrass with Darren Nicholson, Marc Pruett, Reed Jones and Audie Blaylock. Food trucks, live craft demonstrations, a children’s area and free shuttles to the Museum of Haywood County History in Clyde will be available at various times on both days.
On Saturday, the highlighted activity is Plott Fest, a dog show that includes a coon treeing event and a roundtable discussion with Plott.
The festival will close at 1:30 p.m. Sunday at Morning Star United Methodist Church with a shaped note singing demonstration. June Smathers Jolley & Friends will sing from the Christian Harmony Songbook, published in 1873. Jolley is a genealogical society board member.
Sorrells Street Park is at 8 Sorrells St., Canton. For more information, visit

A night to write

The Tracey Morgan Gallery will host its second Write Night on Friday, Oct. 6, 7 p.m. The event, created by writer Elaine Bleakney, invites up to 50 attendees to choose a work in the gallery and spend a quiet 30 minutes writing about it.

“Visual art is often a strong source of inspiration for me,” says Bleakney. “There are experiences of awe in viewing another person’s visual work. I wanted to create a place for that in a gallery, to formalize it a bit as an alternative to a reception and give introverts a chance to engage in ekphrasis together.”

Bleakney says she reached out to Tracey Morgan because she features so many local artists. “The embroidered textiles she has up right now by Orly Cogan are wild, layered, hot, weird — perfect for storytelling. And for more lyrical souls, Cole Caswell‘s tintypes cast gorgeous opportunities for interaction in the back room. I can’t wait for anyone with a notebook and pen to write with us on Oct. 6.”

The Tracey Morgan Gallery is at 188 Coxe Ave. For more information, visit

Community fundraiser for carjacking victim

A benefit show and silent auction for Teresa Ramsay, a mail carrier who was the victim of a Sept. 5 carjacking in Mars Hill, will be held Thursday, Oct 5, 6-11 p.m., at the Mars Theatre Brewing Co.

The event will feature live music from 3 Little Birds, The Cinners, Generous Electric, Dirty Dawg and the White Oak Splits, as well as locally donated items available for purchase.

Ramsay, who was shot while delivering mail, is currently recovering from serious injuries. All proceeds will go toward assisting her and her family.

Jammie McHone, organizer of the benefit and Ramsay’s best friend, says that Ramsay is grateful for the support. “She continues to be inspired by the outpouring of love from her community,” says McHone.

Mars Theatre Brewing Co. is at 70 N. Main St., Mars Hill. For more information, visit

Thomas Wolfe Auditorium FAQs

A new FAQ page addressing the renovations at the historic Thomas Wolfe Auditorium was launched on ArtsAVL’s website last month.

Questions were collected from the community at ArtsAVL’s first town hall, held on Aug. 21. The page will be updated as plans progress for the auditorium, and questions and comments are still being accepted.

Maintenance needs have obliged the venue to temporarily reduce its operating capacity, resulting in revenue losses and questions about future performances.

The Thomas Wolfe Auditorium at Harrah’s Cherokee Center is at 87 Haywood St. Visit the FAQ page at


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About Andy Hall
Andy Hall graduated from The University of North Carolina School of Journalism and Mass Communication. After working at the United States Capitol for ten years, she has returned to her native state to enjoy the mountains — and finally become a writer.

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