From the Center for Cultural Preservation:
New Mountain Music Documentary’s World Premiere in June
(HENDERSONVILLE, NC, May 31, 2017) – The Center for Cultural Preservation is pleased to announce the world premiere of David Weintraub’s new film on the history of Appalachian Music titled, A Great American Tapestry, The Many Strands of Mountain Music screening at three venues in WNC in June. The documentary tells the story of the southern mountain’s musical birth and evolution through the strands of the Scots-Irish legacy, oft-overlooked African-American tradition and through the longest lived music in the Americas, the indigenous tradition.
According to Director/Producer David Weintraub, “Mountain music is often discussed as a Scots-Irish tradition that came over here by the Ulster-Scots and that’s true. It is a fascinating story. But what often gets overlooked is that the West African banjo was played in this country by blacks for nearly 100 years before it was ever picked up by white musicians. African-Americans also played a key role in developing the syncopated and rhythmic fiddle styles that symbolic of old time and bluegrass music. The blended cultural result is exactly what makes mountain music as beautiful and captivating as it is.”
The film features the leading luminaries of the ballad tradition including balladeer extraordinaires Sheila Kay Adams, Joe Penland and Bobby McMillon as well as Grammy Award winning founders of the world renowned black string band, the Carolina Chocolate Drops including Rhiannon Giddens, members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee, David Holt, and musicologists and historians who tell the story of the great melting pot that became Appalachian music.
According to Phil Jamison, professor of Appalachian Music at Warren Wilson College and a participant in the film, “The reality of the southern backcountry was a diverse mix of Europeans, African-American and indigenous native peoples. Not racially, culturally or economically homogeneous, it was home to wealthy landowners, poor tenant farmers, sharecroppers, merchants, subsistence farms and enslaved African-Americans.” All of them shaped the music and made it special.
In addition to a film screening, several musicians participating in the film will perform at the start of each program. A brief discussion with the filmmaker and participants follows the screenings. Hendersonville’s world premiere will feature performances by Sheila Kay Adams, local old time band Rhiannon and the Relics and rising star Amythyst Kiah.
The world premiere of A Great American Tapestry will be held at the following locations/date/times:
- Blue Ridge Community College, Bo Thomas Auditorium at 7:00 pm on Thursday, June 22nd
- Fine Arts Theatre, Asheville at 7:30 pm on Thursday, June 29th
- White Horse, Black Mountain at 7:30 pm on Saturday, June 30th
Tickets are $10 and $15.
Tickets are expected to sell out quickly so it is highly recommended that they be ordered soon on the Center for Cultural Preservation’s website at saveculture.org. For more information about the program and for group sales call the Center at (828) 692-8062.
For more information about future film screenings, online purchases of the DVD and more information about the film, contact the Center for Cultural Preservation at (828) 692-8062 or www.saveculture.org.