Smart Bets

Jan Karon

In The Company of Others, the latest novel by Jane Karon, is centered around a familiar character: Father Timothy Kavanagh of her Mitford series. The nine-book Mitford collection was set in a fictional N.C. town, but it likely borrowed some elements of Karon's longtime home, Blowing Rock. Karon's latest series focuses on the adventures of Father Tim. The author will be at the Grove Park Inn's Wilson Room for a discussion and book signing on Monday, June 6. 7-8:30 p.m. $15 advance/$20 doors. The event benefits The Writers' Workshop. Info: or 254-8111.

Kent Ambler

Now that the weather is warm and it's light by 6 a.m., the birds are out in force. For local artist Kent Ambler, that's pretty much always the case: Birds are among his most popular subjects (along with dogs, his home life and the surrounding landscape). "He is more an alchemist than artist, combining unrelated elements — negative space, soy ink, wood — and creating something more intriguing than the sum of his ingredients," says a description of his new show, set to open at American Folk Art & Framing on Thursday, June 2. A reception (concurrent with the Downtown Art Walk) takes place on Friday, June 3, 5-8 p.m.

Joe Krown

New Orleans-style piano and Hammond B-3 player Joe Krown has a laundry list of awards to his name and an even more impressive inventory of friends and collaborators. He's perhaps best known for his long association with the late bluesman Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown, but since '98 he's held down a solo career. Krown brings his trio (including Funky Meters' drummer Russell Batiste Jr. and guitarist/vocalist Walter “Wolfman” Washington) to Jack of the Wood on Friday, June 3.

Bo Bice

Alabama-born Bo Bice (christened Harold Elwin, but nicknamed Bogart by his granny) has something close to a textbook Southern rocker background. The GED, the rehab stint, the opening slot for Warrant. But then he did what few Southern rockers have ever done: Took his long hair and his talent on American Idol. That was in 2004; Bice came in second. He's since put out three albums and won a round of Don't Forget the Lyrics for charity. And bragging rights. Bice plays Wild Wing Cafe on Friday, June 3. $10.

Double Vision

"The images in this series serve as an outsider’s investigation of slavery’s legacy of injustice and inequality through an examination of the traditional Southern plantation home and the lesser structures which surround it," reads the press release for N.J.-based photographer Annie Hogan's exhibit, Double Vision. But the narrative works, comprised of layered images, are also cool, contemplative and gorgeously haunting. The show opens at Castell Photography on Friday, June 3, with a reception from 5 to 8 p.m.


"Though we’re based in Florida, we have done most of our touring abroad, and now we’re bringing it home," says The Mayapuris, a world-music crossover group, currently on its "Southern Hospitality" tour. The group’s members met in boarding school in India where they studied mantra music. They bring dancing, drumming (on the 500 year-old mridanga) and kirtan (devotional chanting) to the stage. The troupe performs at the Hazel Robinson Amphitheater in Montford on Monday, June 6, 7-10 p.m. $15 adults/free for kids.


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2 thoughts on “Smart Bets

  1. trillium

    I totally agree with how talented Bo Bice is! It appears that his photo is aligned with information about Joe Krown – perhaps this is my browser. As an avid fan, to my knowledge Mr. Bice has never been in rehab nor was he considered for the opening slot for Warrant.

    Attendees to the Wild Wing Cafe are definitely in for a real treat.

  2. Jenuine36

    It’s true, according to Wikipedia – Bo was in rehab, and also has a Warrant connection.

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