Carolina in the Fall 2016

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Carolina in the Fall takes place in the town of Wilkesboro, North Carolina which is also the home of MerleFest – a spectacular four-day multi-genre music event each April.

Whereas MerleFest takes place on the campus of the Wilkes Community College on the edge of town, Carolina in the Fall is situated in the heart of Wilkesboro on Main Street, next to the Wilkes Heritage Museum (formerly the Wilkes County Courthouse).

For best effect, click on the first image of each Gallery then press either the ‘maximise’ or ‘full screen’ buttons below the image then browse through the photographs.

This gallery is an assortment of some of the artists who appeared at Carolina in the Fall.

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Apart from the great pleasure of being at Carolina in the Fall, being asked to introduce The Kruger Brothers’ set on Friday evening was a genuine honour.

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Friday night concluded with The Infamous Stringdusters; a band who was top of our ‘must see’ list when my son and I made our first trip to MerleFest in 2007. Last seen at Bristol Rhythm & Roots where they made an unscheduled, late-night appearance after Railroad Earth (yes…quite a night) it was fun to introduce them at Carolina in the Fall.

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Photo by kind permission of Deanna Durham Younger

Why the hand in the air? I asked the audience to raise their hand if The Stringdusters’ ‘Black Rock’ was played at their wedding – a few hands were raised. I then added ‘…at the ceremony’ all hands lowered except mine and Debbie’s (The Stringdusters were much amused too).

Here’s a few from their set.

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Appearing at Carolina in the Fall on Saturday were two performers who had been nominated for IBMA (International Bluegrass Music Association) Momentum Awards. One being Mollie Tuttle who, in the week following Carolina in the Fall, won Instrumentalist of the Year.

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The other IBMA Momentum Award nominee at Carolina in the Fall was Melody Walker of Front Country who ultimately won Performance Award – Vocalist of the Year. Having seen Front Country conclude their recent UK tour and catching (and introducing them) at Bristol Rhythm & Roots we were still looking forward to seeing them again in Wilkesboro – we were not disappointed.

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As evening drew on, The Steel Wheels took to the stage. We had only seen Trent Wagler and The Steel Wheels once before and were eagerly anticipating this second opportunity to see them. They have built a richly-deserved reputation for passionate performances of the highest calibre so it was fitting that they would be introduced by Cindy Baucom of Knee Deep in Bluegrass; surely Bluegrass’ most respected radio host.

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The finale was The Kruger Brothers with Symphony of the Mountains performing ‘Spirit of the Rockies’. From their own website, ‘Spirit of the Rockies’ is described as:
“a poetic, spiraling tale about ghosts, relationships and guides – both seen and unseen. It is a story about love, spiritual legacy, the sharing of beauty, and the yearning for freedom from the restrictions of the mind.”
The performace was breathtaking and captivating from the first notes of ‘Beautiful Nothings’.
Few pictures were taken and they were taken as the musicians settled to begin with one taken at the end of the performance as Jens Kruger addressed the audience.

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Lastly..a huge Thank You to Michelle and Dale Isom who organised this magnificent event. We look forward to returning to Carolina in the Fall in 2017

Dale Isom
Dale Isom