Conscious party: Selwyn Birchwood benefit concert

Blues artist Selwyn Birchwood is renowned for his electric and lap steel guitar prowess as well as his powerful, soulful vocals. Photo courtesy of the artist

WHAT: Selwyn Birchwood benefit concert

WHEN: Thursday, July 23, 8 and 10:30 p.m.

WHERE: Tressa’s Downtown Jazz and Blues, 28 Broadway

WHY: “I have always been passionate about music of deep and true expression that aspires to be free,” says Marcel Anton, Western North Carolina resident and event organizer.

Accordingly, Anton’s forthcoming benefit concert series — which features American blues guitarist and vocalist Selwyn Birchwood in its first iteration — aims to “rebuild and restore the presence of blues music in Asheville” while raising funds for Brother Wolf Animal Rescue.

“Blues began in the fields worked by slaves,” he says, adding that many historic blues artists like Etta Baker had ties to the Asheville area. However, the migration of former slaves over time, Anton adds, created a significant cultural loss for Western North Carolina.

“Of all the music that is here, authentic blues music — one of our unique and most beautiful American art forms — seems to be the least supported,” Anton laments.

Brother Wolf needs a similar boost at this time of year, according to Anton, who calls the organization’s local efforts “amazingly compassionate work.” All proceeds from the benefit concert will go directly to the nonprofit.

The one-night event includes two performances, beginning at both 8 and 10:30 p.m. At $50 per person, VIP tickets include table seating and complimentary Champagne, while general admission tickets are $30 per person. Both options include food catered by Strada Italiano and an “intimate and exclusive” evening with the visiting musician, Anton adds.

“Selwyn is a young African-American who is a truly authentic talent,” Anton says, calling the Tampa-based electric and lap steel guitarist a rising star in the musical sphere. “He represents the future and continuity of the blues.”

Visit for more information or to purchase tickets.


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

About Kat McReynolds
Kat studied entrepreneurship and music business at the University of Miami and earned her MBA at Appalachian State University. Follow me @katmAVL

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

2 thoughts on “Conscious party: Selwyn Birchwood benefit concert

  1. susan fredriksen

    No one should miss seeing him. Great musician, really nice person as well. Would suggest to go to The “real deal”.

    • Kat McReynolds

      Thanks for the advice, Susan. Enjoy the show if you are able to go!

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.