Concert

Jerron "Blind Boy" Paxton

Blues artist Jerron “Blind Boy” Paxton has WOWED the crowds in Raleigh and beyond with his humor and storytelling. From the streets of the Wide Open Bluegrass StreetFest to the intimacy of Fletcher Theater, his performances are memorable and mesmerizing. This year, he’ll perform a full evening concert as part of the Down Home Series! Paxton is a singer and multi-instrumentalist who transforms traditional jazz, blues, folk, and country music into the here and now. He is still in his 20s, and he is often described as a young man with an old soul.

Jerron "Blind Boy" Paxton playing banjo beside a tree. He is wearing a hat, a jacket and button-down shirt, and he has a bright smile.

Molly Tuttle

In 2017, Molly Tuttle made IBMA history by becoming the first woman to earn the Guitar Player of the Year title! She was also the first woman to be nominated in the Guitar Player of the Year category. Earlier this year, Whippoorwill Arts/FreshGrass Artist Foundation announced that Tuttle is one of two grant recipients. This award celebrates musical accomplishments, extraordinary talent, community spirit, and creative souls.

Molly Tuttle - a young woman with light skin, shoulder length brown hair, wearing a jean jacket and dark shirt, with a guitar neck to her right.

Rip the Calico

Rip the Calico is a high-energy contra dance band from North Carolina. Drawing heavily from Celtic influences (and origins), the Calicos will take you on a dance journey from dulcet circlings to mad romps across the dance floor. The band features Alison Arnold (Irish flute, Irish and Scottish whistles); Gordon Arnold (cello, guitar, banjo); Mairead Brady (fiddle); and Tyler Johnson (tenor banjo, guitar, mandolin). Celebrate Scottish and Irish culture and their contributions to North Carolina music at the NC Museum of History with Rip the Calico!

Rip the Calico: Alison Arnold on whistle; Mairead Brady on fiddle; Tyler Johnson wearing a kilt and playing mandolin; Gordon Arnold, sitting and playing cello.

Rissi Palmer

Since releasing her self-titled CD in October 2007, singer-songwriter Rissi Palmer has received widespread media attention, including The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, People Magazine, GIANT, New York Post, VIBE, CBS Saturday Early Show, Huffington Post, Extra, CNN, and many more. And with the release of her debut single, "Country Girl," Palmer made music history as the first African-American female to chart a country song since 1987.

Rissi Palmer holds her guitar behind her head, partly visible over her right shoulder. Her dark, curly hair blows partly in front of her face; she is wearing a leather-textured jacket over a lacy white top.

Rhiannon Giddens

Singer-songwriter Rhiannon Giddens is the co-founder of the GRAMMY award-winning string band Carolina Chocolate Drops, in which she also plays banjo and fiddle. In 2016, she earned the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass, and in 2017 she released Freedom Highway (follow-up to her acclaimed, GRAMMY-nominated solo album Tomorrow Is My Turn); had a recurring role on the CMT show Nashville; delivered a spellbinding keynote at the International Bluegrass Music Association business conference; and earned a MacArthur Genius Grant.

Broadway Series South logo

Rhiannon Giddens, wearing all black (slacks, top, and jacket) standing alone on a dirt road with a cloudy sky above and behind her and tall grasses on either side; a tree is also visible in the distance.

Eliza Meyer

Eliza Meyer is an "old soul," singing and playing traditional string band, old time and early bluegrass music reminiscent of Hazel and Alice, The Carter Family, and Tommy Jarrell. Influenced by traditional ballads of Madison County and the round peak music of Surry County, she plays fiddle, banjo, guitar, and autoharp. Meyer currently studies with Dewey Brown and has taken classes with Alice Gerrard, Eddie Bond, Erynn Marshall and Sheila Kay Adams.

Eliza Meyer, a young woman with shoulder-length brown hair, plays a banjo seated in front of a microphone. Her head is tilted up and her eyes are closed; a Wide Open Bluegrass banner is partially visible in the background.

2018 North Carolina Heritage Awards Ceremony

The 2018 North Carolina Arts Council Heritage Award recipients are:

2016 NC Heritage Award honorees on stage together at the end of the most recent NC Heritage Awards Ceremony in Fletcher Theater.
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