Located in Southwestern North Carolina is Jackson County. The musical roots of Jackson County run deep into the wellspring of traditional Appalachian music. The musical styles are mixed fairly evenly between old time, bluegrass, and gospel. Like its neighboring Haywood County, many of the styles here are mixed, producing the bluegrass gospel sound and many other musicians that play across genres. One of the most famous early musicians in Jackson County was Samantha Biddix Bumgarner who, in 1924, was the first woman to record “hillbilly” music. Her accompanist on the recording was Eva Smathers Davis of Sylva, NC. Samantha’s father, Has Biddix, was also a fiddler of some reknown. Today, there are still many musicians of high caliber in Jackson County like the notable Queen Family, The Fiddlin’ Dills Sisters, Darren Nicholson (award winning mandolin player with Balsam Range), Rye Holler Boys and the up and coming bluegrass/gospel band Mountain Faith.
Jackson County JAM meets at the Jackson County Public Library on Wednesdays from 4:00 to 6:00 and serves students ages seven up to eigth graders. The classes offered are fiddle, guitar, mandolin, bass, singing, band, and banjolele/ukulele along with various enrichment session where students will be exposed to dulcimer, hambone, balleds, and much more!
Lilah Price – Ukulele, Singing
Johnny Gentry – Guitar, Bass
Channa De Silva – Fiddle, Jamming
Ethan Johnson – Guitar, Band
Andrew Danner – Mandolin
For more information, please contact:
Jackson County Arts Council
310 Keener St, Rm 201
Sylva, NC 28779
or Director Kim Oliver at [email protected]