This Old Porch™

Sundays from 3 to 6pm

This Old Porch is a show of traditional and regional mountain music, songs and ballads, contemporary old time, dance tunes and more. Folklorist John Fowler and award winning musician Carol Rifkin host this show that keeps the music of the mountains alive.

Thanks to Brooke Lauer from South Carolina, who designed the logo for This Old Porch.

Rev. Sparks & the Jubilee: An Appalachian roots old-time string band with Jake Blount, Mason Via, Clarke Williams, Landon George will join Carol live in the studio this Sunday, March 11 at 4:00pm during This Old Porch.

Man holding banjo
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One of the pioneers of country music, Charlie Poole was born in 1892 in Franklinville, a small town in Randolph County, NC. He played the banjo from an early age, and developed a distinctive three-finger style to compensate for a baseball injury. Poole was famous for his rough and rowdy ways, and you can hear the voice of experience when he sings songs of drinking and rambling. With his band the North Carolina Ramblers he made dozens of records between 1925 and 1930, mostly for Columbia Records.

Two men playing instruments and smiling
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Surry County’s Round Peak area, and the surrounding communities between Mount Airy, N.C., and Galax, Va., have shaped the sound of Old-Time music heard across the nation and around the world.  Two of the best-known members of this tradition were Tommy Jarrell and Fred Cockerham.

Host John Fowler welcomes Crescent Moon Rounders to This Old Porch on Sunday, February 4th at 3:30 for an interview and live session with songs from their new album Ain’t Gonna Get No Supper Here Tonight. The Crescent Moon Rounders have been performing together at musical festivals in North Carolina for over a dozen years. Reid Ringer, from Saluda, South Carolina, and Rob Morrison, from Chapel Hill, have played in various bands together for over 30 years. Ray Owens, from Charlotte, has come from a mixture of bands from Asheville to Charlotte before he joined the Rounders.

Two men playing instruments and smiling
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In the Blue Ridge, the Christmas season was celebrated for days on end, with gatherings of family and friends, good food, and lots of music. This was especially true in the area known as Round Peak, around Mount Airy, North Carolina, and Galax, Virginia. The tradition was called Breaking up Christmas, and December 25th was just the beginning.

Woman singing from book
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In 1821, Sequoyah singlehandedly created a syllabary, or writing system, for his people, the Cherokee Indians. Within a few years, the tribe’s literacy rate was far higher than their white neighbors. First published in 1829, the Cherokee Hymnbook contained the lyrics to sacred songs, written in Cherokee, using Sequoyah’s syllabary. It was a groundbreaking achievement, created for an audience who could both read the Cherokee language and sing by heart the tunes that went with the lyrics.

Children playing instruments
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In 2000, Helen White, a school guidance counselor, founded a music program in the Alleghany County, N.C, schools.  She called it Junior Appalachian Musicians—or JAM. The program offered instruction in the traditional music of the mountains. To say that JAM has been a success would be almost as big an understatement as saying that Bill Monroe had something to do with bluegrass.

A group of people singing
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North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains are home to a rich heritage of African-American gospel music in local churches, performed by singers and instrumental musicians who may be professionals, or who may simply love to lift their voices in Sunday worship. One such place is Texana, a historic African-American community in Cherokee County in the state’s southwestern-most corner. Texana has a longstanding gospel music tradition, associated especially with Mount Zion Baptist Church.

Man and woman dancing
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Haywood County in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains is the heartland of a homegrown dance tradition—team square dancing, and its close relative, team clogging. Sam Love Queen, born in 1889 is often credited with being the founding father of this tradition. His Soco Gap Dancers performed for President Roosevelt and the Queen of England in 1939.

(The following thank-you CD's marked with "**" are in limited quantity and only available by calling 1-800-245-8870. All others are listed in our drop-down menu.)

Altan -- "The Gap of Dreams"

**The Press Gang -- "Fortune It May Smile"**

**Alan Jabbour and Stephen Wade -- "Americana Concert"**

Doc Watson -- "Live at Club 47"

**(Various Artists): "The Crooked Road: A Century of Heritage Guitar Music"**

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