The Jackson County Arts Council has named Betty Brown as the NEW Junior Appalachian Musicians (JAM) Director.
Mrs. Brown has been singing, writing music and playing guitar for most of her life. She has recorded five CDs of Appalachian music with the latest CD containing fourteen of her original songs. She and her sister have published a book of their stories in song called “Ballads, Blues and Blessings.” Betty performs her music at many festivals and venues across the region. Her roots in Appalachian music are deep and she wishes to share her love for this music with others.
Betty (Collins) Brown graduated high school from Camp Lab School in Cullowhee, NC. She pursued a 29 year career as a legal secretary and then became the Secretary to the Superintendent and Assistant to the Board of Education for Jackson County Public Schools. In 2012, when she retired from the Jackson County Board of Education, she became a member of the Board of Directors for Catch the Spirit of Appalachia and served as president for 2 years. She has been teaching guitar for the JAM program for the past five years.
The Jackson County Junior Appalachian Musicians program is an afterschool program that provides school aged students (3rd-12th grades) instruction and performance opportunities in mountain heritage music with traditional Appalachian instruments. It is open to all Jackson County Public School students and to Jackson County homeschooled students. JAM began in Jackson County in 2011 and offers instruction in acoustic guitar, fiddle, mandolin, banjo, autoharp and string band. Funding for this program comes from the NC Arts Council, Jackson County Arts Council and through donations and contributions from the public. The Jackson County Arts Council is the designated county partner through the state that allows us to offer this program in our county.
Please help us welcome Betty Brown as the NEW Junior Appalachian Musicians Director. We look forward to the new direction the JAM program is heading under Betty’s new leadership.
Please contact the Jackson County Arts Council or Jackson County JAM if you would like to register your child for the upcoming Fall semester, become a volunteer or paid instructor, or help sponsor this wonderful program for our youth.