North Carolina is not necessarily one of those US states that comes to mind when you are talking about the birthplace of famous musicians. But this impression is very wrong! There are numerous of worldwide famous stars who were born here or still live here. Amongst all famous people of this state are Tori Amos, who was born in Newton. Arguably one of the most popular jazz musicians of all time was born and raised in High Point. John Coltrane remains unforgotten to this day. Funk pioneer George Clinton was born in Kannapolis, Maceo Parker is from Kinston. Nina Simone was born in Tryon, and James Taylor spent most of his childhood in Chapel Hill. They have all contributed to North Carolina influencing the music of the southern states in many ways.
Asheville Celebrates Live Music
The mountain town of Asheville is a two-hour drive from Charlotte Douglas International Airport. This is the place famous for its craft beers, as well as, its art scene. The city center is transformed into one big stage every evening. The range of performing artists is enormous. From bluegrass to country to jazz and rock, fans will find everything live here. People widely recognize The Orange Peel as one of the best rock clubs and venues in the United States. Numerous superstars such as Bob Dylan or the Beastie Boys have performed here also. Robert Moog, the inventor of the famous synthesizer of the same name, lived in Asheville for 30 years.
Mount Airy Is the Home of Andy Griffith
On the border between Virginia and North Carolina, you can find the town called Mound Airy with its great attraction the Andy Griffith Museum. The city might be called a Mecca for passionate violinists and banjo players. They still broadcast the live radio show Merry-Go-Round in the Historic Earle Theater, the stronghold of old-time music. After Grand Ole Opry, it is the second oldest radio show in the entire United States. The jam sessions take place every Thursday and Saturday and have many a huge audience. In summer, the Bluegrass and Old-Time Fiddlers Convention attracts a large number of guests in front of the beautiful mountain backdrop.
Great Stages in Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill is the place for those who are looking for a dynamic and lively atmosphere. The city is known for its casual southern flair. You can find many street musicians on Franklin Street. But the city wakes up after sunset. There is excellent music at The Cave, and local musicians perform on the stage at Local 506. The Cat’s Cradle in the neighboring town of Carrboro is louder and has a soul of rock music.
Appalachian and folk music have found their home in Wilkesboro. Here the folk and bluegrass sounds can be heard from almost every corner. You can find one of the most prestigious music festivals in the country here. At the Merle Fest, artists perform who combine traditional Appalachian music with other influences and styles. The festival takes place in April each year and attracts visitors from all around the country.