In 2012, within the span of two months, North Carolina lost two of its most famous and most loved musical voices, Doc Watson and Earl Scruggs. This was my tribute to them.
Elizabeth Cotten was barely a teenager when she wrote one of the most iconic songs in the American folk canon. It took decades for music historians to give her proper credit.
It seemed ironic to me that two of the loudest, most prolific, and most politically vocal bands on North Carolina’s so-called new music scene of the mid-1980s represented a silent minority, shunned as if they were the black sheep of the South’s new musical family.
Tamara McIlwain remembers a time when powerful young female rappers ruled the airwaves with positive messages. It was the late ’80s and early ’90s. The queens were Latifah, MC Lyte, Yo-Yo, and the sassy Salt ‘n Pepa. “Women like that — they had something to say,” says Mcllwain
Billed as “The Fully Orchestrated Live Premiere of Big Star’s Third,” the core musicians included Mike Mills of R.E.M., Chris Stamey and Will Rigby of the dB’s, Mitch Easter of Let’s Active, and original Big Star drummer Jody Stephens.