2018 Performers

This year’s music combines a bit of star power with wide diversity of styles we’ve all come to expect from this festival. As always, every act has direct ties to our neighborhood.

Here is the schedule:

11:15 Bandana Klezmer
12 noon West End Trio
1:15 Billy Jonas Band
2:30 Cat Dragons
3:45 Buncombe Turnpike
5:00 David Holt
6:15 WestSound

David Holt and his Lightning Bolts - David Holt has spent his life learning and performing traditional American music. It has taken him from the most remote coves of southern Appalachia to the bright lights of TV studios and the Grand Old Opry stage. A four-time Grammy Award winner, David is a musician, storyteller, historian, photographer, television host and entertainer. He plays ten acoustic instruments and has released numerous award-winning recordings of traditional mountain music and southern folktales.

David is well known for his television and radio work. Currently he is hosting the PBS series David Holt’s State of Music, featuring some of the regions finest musicians including Rhiannon Giddens, Steep Canyon Rangers and Balsam Range. David can also be seen as a musician, strumming a mandolin and dancing around in the popular film, O Brother Where Art Thou.

See their website.

WestSound - The sensation of most of the past years’ festival, WestSound will once again rock the avenue with high-energy Motown, blues, R&B, and soul that had everybody humming, singing, and dancing. WestSound was formed many years ago by three brothers: Randy, Oscar and Cecil Weston. They have performed locally and abroad. WestSound has performed in the Indiana Black Expo, Goombay, Harambee, Bele Chere, Eden Fest, LEAF and more! Don’t miss them!

See their Facebook page.

Buncombe Turnpike - Lead singer and bass player Tom Godleski began Buncombe Turnpike in the fall of 1997. Buncombe Turnpike plays a variety of heartfelt tunes ranging from traditional and contemporary bluegrass to gospel and hand-crafted Buncombe Turnpike originals. With their crowd-pleasing demeanor, seasoned musicianship, and powerful vocals, the band has made a name for themselves among traditional and contemporary listeners alike. It is no surprise that their 2004 sophomore release ‘Blackwater Bottom’ made waves on the air and on the stage proving yet again that one of the premier bluegrass bands from the musical hotbed of Asheville NC. Their fifth album, "Forever It Will Be" is the first all original album the band has produced.

See their website.

Bandana Klezmer

What's a klezmer band doing in the mountains of North Carolina you ask? The answer, is quite a lot! Most of us have been playing for years nestled among the woodland critters in Yancey and Mitchell counties. The Asheville connection happened when Andy taught an eight week klezmer workshop at the JCC which attracted the hill folk and magic did ensue. Made up of Jewish and Gentile stock we play old world klezmer music from the Carpathian mountain regions in eastern Europe. No twists, no fusions, not modern other than an occasional original tune. We collect melodies from older klezmorim, scratchy records, and out of print manuscripts. We have kept quite busy playing festivals, holidays, weddings, bar mitzvahs and brisses in synagogues, churches, dance halls, living rooms and cemeteries.

West End Trio

The West End Trio is a greasy, soulful band out of Asheville.
Fronted by versatile guitarist and lead singer, Drew Matulich,the band offers a diverse range of repertoire drawing from Funk, Swing, Jazz, Blues, as well as Roots Americana. The rhythmsection consists of drummer Kent Spillmann and bassist Rob Parks, who lay down a foundation for the band with a variety of heavy, funky grooves. The West End Trio provides for a rich and exciting performance that is appealing to the careful listener and the dancing crowd alike!

Billy Jonas

They love to engage and delight both young and adult audiences. Whether performing for adults, families, school groups, faith communities, or a mix, they strive for a musical excellence that inspires, entertains, and moves people literally and figuratively. With "wild winded word magic" (Dirty Linen Magazine), homemade "industrial re-percussion" instruments, exquisite 3 and 4 part vocal harmonies, plus guitar and bass, they love to create community through song and story. Their specialty: finding and pushing your "wonder" button.

Cat Dragons

A few years back, George and Andy Pond were booked to host a weekly "bluegrass brunch" on Sundays at the One Stop Deli on College Street. Over the years, the Pond Brothers occasionally invited friends to sit in, and some started showing up regularly, so much so that this band was born. Never knowing exactly who's going to be there any particular Sunday inspired the band's name. When everybody shows up, we call ourselves the Cat Dragons. By "everybody," we mean Montford residents Jason Krekel on fiddle and mandolin and Ben Scales on lap-style resophonic guitar, Andy Pond on banjo, George Pond, who works in Montford on bass, and Aaron "Woody" Wood on guitar. The music is pure Americana with bluegrass instruments in the various styles of Johnny Cash and John Hartford.