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2017 First Night Raleigh Traditional Stage: Amythyst Kiah; Cane Mill Road

Sunday, December 31, 2017 @ 8:00 pm
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Ring in the new year with PineCone at First Night Raleigh! The Traditional Stage will host two great bands again this year – Amythyst Kiah will perform sets at 7, 8, and 10 p.m.; and North Carolina’s own Cane Mill Road will perform a special set at 9 p.m. We look forward to celebrating with you this year before the acorn drops us into 2018! Provocative and coolly fierce, Kiah’s ability to cross the boundaries of blues and old-time through reinterpretation is groundbreaking and simply unforgettable. And Billboard-charting Cane Mill Road is a stunningly versatile young group whose members grew up just down the road from Doc Watson in Deep Gap, North Carolina. Make plans to see both of these performers during this year’s First Night Raleigh!

Amythyst Kiah – 7, 8, & 10 p.m.

Amythyst Kiah is a Southern Gothic songster based in Johnson City, Tennessee, whose commanding stage presence is only matched by her raw and powerful vocals—a deeply moving, hypnotic sound that stirs echoes of a distant and restless past. A graduate of East Tennessee State University, she studied old time music and music performance, and it proved to be a pivotal moment in her life as she transformed from a long-time closet musician into a well-rounded, captivating performer. Accoutered interchangeably with banjo, acoustic guitar, or a full band (Her Chest of Glass), Kiah’s toolbox is augmented by her scholarship of African-American roots music. Her eclectic influences span decades, drawing heavily on old time music (Mississippi Sheiks, Son House, Jimmie Rodgers, Olla Belle Reed, Carter Family), inspired by strong R&B and country music vocalists from the ’50s-’70s (Big Mama Thornton, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Mahalia Jackson, Dolly Parton, Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn) and influenced by contemporary artists with powerful vocal integrity (Adele, Florence and the Machine, Megan Jean and the KFB, Janelle Monae).

Recent tours in Scotland and the U.K. have seen Kiah performing for audiences at the Americana Music Association UK Showcase, the Southern Fried Festival, Cambridge Folk Festival, the Edinburgh Jazz Festival, and SummerTyne Americana Festival. She is a crowd favorite at Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion in the U.S., and she has performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts, the Smithsonian Folk Life Festival, and the PNC presents Wide Open Bluegrass StreetFest, among others.

Cane Mill Road – 9 p.m.

Cane Mill Road strikes a balance between preserving the bluegrass mountain sound they were raised on and boldly rocking progressive interpretations of that same sound, tackling not only complex original music, but classic covers of the Beatles, Dylan, and more. The band’s debut album, Five Speed, hit #9 on Billboard’s Bluegrass Album chart and was produced by two-time GRAMMY winner Cathy Fink, and by Tom Mindte of Patuxent Studios in Maryland. Plus, Cane Mill Road was selected from hundreds of applicants by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) as one of 30 bands to showcase during its 2017 conference/festival as the future of bluegrass. The band represented the United States of America in 2015 at a United Nations World Music Festival. You’ve heard them on NPR/PBS, and all over the radio, with every cut on Five Speed getting airplay. The band goes back into the studio in January to record its second album.

Band members are 15-year-old Liam Purcell on mandolin, fiddle, and vocals; 20-year-old Eliot Smith on bass; 18-year-old Trajan (Tray) Wellington on banjo; and 20-year-old Casey Lewis on guitar and vocals. Cane Mill Road’s high-energy performances feature the band’s easy-going rapport both on and off stage along with their eclectic mix of originals and standards. Touring internationally in Argentina and stateside from New York to Alabama to Missouri to Pennsylvania to Kentucky to Tennessee to Virginia and the Carolinas, the band is proud to be sponsored by Deering Banjos, GHS Strings, Shubb Capos, Sorensen Mandolin & Guitar Company, Kogut Violins, and MiniFlex Microphones.

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Sunday, December 31, 2017
8:00 pm
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Church of the Good Shepherd
121 Hillsborough Street
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