Join us for The Floyd Radio Show on Saturday, March 7, 2020 at 7:30 pm. The show celebrates American roots music through various musical guests, comedy skits and jokes, stories, jingles and more. This month’s guests include The Deer Creek Boys, Paul Brown and Terri McMurray, and The New Macedon Rangers. Tickets are $12 in advance, $15 day of show.
Deer Creek Boys
The Deer Creek Boys offer what Mountain Fever Records has described as “a youthful, edging on contemporary approach to bluegrass”, but definitely stay rooted in the traditional mindset. Bluegrass legend Terry Baucom has been quoted saying “I like to listen to these guys because they play the kind of bluegrass I dig.” They were originally formed when brothers Justin Tomlin (guitar) and Jason “Sweet Tater” Tomlin (bass) and best friend Cason Ogden (mandolin) started picking locally in their native Amherst, Virginia and have since added North Carolina banjo picker Andy Lowe to round out their sound. They have been a favorite of the festival circuit ever since emerging on the scene! With stints in Nothin’ Fancy, Junior Sisk & Rambler’s Choice, and the Bluegrass Brothers on the band’s résumé, the Deer Creek Boys are a powerful blend of energetic picking, hard-hitting harmonies, and top-notch songwriting.
In April of 2016, the band released their major-label debut, What Goes Up, on Mountain Fever Records. The album received instant success, landing three separate songs on the Bluegrass Today radio charts and making it to the second round of the IBMA “Emerging Artist of the Year” award category. What Goes Up even received a bid into the initial round of the Grammy Awards voting in 2017, for “Best Bluegrass Album.”
Paul Brown and Terri McMurray
A musician since childhood, Paul Brown spent years collecting and documenting traditional music in southwestern Virginia and northwest North Carolina, particularly the stunningly rich traditions around Mount Airy in the region known as Round Peak. As a performer, a record producer, and a radio host—formerly of Mount Airy’s famous hometown station, WPAQ, and now reaching a national audience as a newscaster and reporter for National Public Radio’s Morning Edition—Paul Brown has introduced millions to the special world of Round Peak music, and helped to ensure its preservation and vitality for future generations.
Paul started picking banjo on a new Sears Silvertone when he was ten. He developed his own two- and three-finger styles, and also learned the clawhammer style. His interest, and his discovery of the Clawhammer Banjo albums, inspired him to make frequent trips to visit as many of the older players as he could. He has visited and played music with a number of the older artists in the Southern Appalachian region.
Paul spent years learning music directly from some of the last fiddle, banjo, and guitar players to emerge before the age of radio and recordings, including Tommy Jarrell, Gilmer Woodruff, Fields Ward, Robert Sykes, Luther Davis, Verlen Clifton, and Paul Sutphin. Paul studied banjo intensively with Tommy Jarrell, and he learned much from the playing of Wade Ward. He spent considerable time with Wade’s nephew, Fields, a fine guitarist, banjo player and singer. He also played in the Smokey Valley Boys with Benton Flippen, Verlen Clifton, and Paul Sutphin. When Paul Sutphin died, Paul Brown wrote about how Sutphin influenced the musicians: “More than anything else, he would infuse the performance with focused energy, intensity and happiness that drove the rest of us to play harder and better than we thought we could.”
Paul Brown is accompanied by his wife, Terri McMurray, a talented multi-instrumentalist and singer.
The New Macedon Rangers
Presenting a range of traditional dance music and songs from the Virginia Blue Ridge region to bluegrass and country favorites, the New Macedon Rangers’ stirring harmonies and driving instrumentals capture the essence of a bygone era of American music. Living in Floyd, VA, Ashlee Watkins and Andrew Small regularly perform as a duo at the Floyd Country Store. They often play with a full band for the Country Store’s Friday Night Jamborees and have provided music for performances by the legendary Green Grass Cloggers. The New Macedon Rangers have won both the bluegrass and old-time band contests at the Hoppin’ John Fiddlers’ Convention in Silk Hope, NC, as well as old-time band competitions at the Fiddler’s Grove Festival in Union Grove, NC, and at the Tazewell County Fiddlers’ Convention in Virginia. In addition, Ashlee and Andrew have been awarded a number of blue ribbons for fiddle, banjo, and folk singing at fiddlers’ conventions throughout VA, NC, and TN, and Andrew was named the 2015 Bluegrass Mandolin Champion of Australia. The duo co-founded and coordinate the Dorrigo Old Time Music School as part of Australia’s Dorrigo Folk and Bluegrass Festival.