Saturday, June 25, 2016
Burnsville Town Center, South Main Street
Tickets $15 adults, $5 children under 12
Purchase at the Burnsville Town Center, 828-682-7209
The Traditional Voices Group is pleased to announce this year’s RiddleFest Concert. On June 25, TVG will host the annual event at the Burnsville Town Center from 7 to 9 p.m. The Burnsville Jubilee Choir featuring the Griffith Chapel Singers will be the featured musical group. The evening will open with blues singer/songwriter Steve Barnes, who will perform his original composition “Esley’s Blues.” The first set will also include the Celtalachian harmony group Thistle Dew and Americana singer Ash Devine. Tickets will be $15 for adults and $5 for children under 12. Concessions will feature home-made desserts. Tickets for the RiddleFest Concert are available from Traditional Voices Group by calling 828-682-9654 or through the Burnsville Town Center at 828-682-7209. For more information visit the Traditional Voices Group Facebook page.
The Burnsville Jubilee Choir was organized this spring by Dr. Tim Babb, retired music director of Yancey County Schools. Dr. Babb recruited singers from Burnsville’s best church choirs to perform Lesley Riddle’s gospel songs which he has arranged for choral performance. The Griffith Chapel Singers, under the direction of Sam Maren, will lead the audience in participatory gospel singing of traditional local songs. Brian Turner will provide piano accompaniment for this portion of the concert.
RiddleFest is produced annually by Traditional Voices Group (TVG), a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the music and stories of the Toe River Valley in the southern Appalachian Mountains. TVG also promotes the contributions made by native son Lesley Riddle to the development of country music in its early days. RiddleFest is a way to learn about Riddle and celebrate his life and music.
African-American musician and composer Lesley Riddle (1905-1979) was born in Yancey County and grew up with family members in Burnsville, NC and Kingsport, TN. As a young man in Kingsport, Riddle met A.P. Carter, head of the famous Carter family, and together the two explored and collected music from the Appalachian Mountains of eastern Tennessee and western North Carolina. Many of the songs they collected were revised by Carter and Riddle and were later included on Carter family albums. Riddle taught Maybelle some special guitar-picking techniques. Although Riddle did not receive credit for his contributions to Carter family music during his lifetime, musicologist Mike Seeger eventually found Riddle in upstate New York and recorded his music, which was released on Rounder Records.