Looking for some music this coming weekend at a great price? Great Smoky Mountains National Park will hold its 9th annual “Music of the Mountains” celebration Friday, April 19 through Sunday, April 21, and the event offers a nice variety of tunes and styles in several settings in and near the park.
Over the years, this event has grown to span an entire weekend, with performances of traditional music in neighboring communities along with an entire day of free music in the park at the Sugarlands Visitor Center on April 20th.
The three-day event begins with a concert of Celtic music by Four Leaf Peat on Friday at 7:00 p.m. at the Great Smoky Mountain Heritage Center in Townsend, Tennessee. General admission for this concert is $5.
“Music of the Mountains” continues on Saturday with a series of free performances of old-time mountain music during the day at the park’s Sugarlands Visitor Center, which is located inside the park, two miles south of Gatlinburg, Tennessee, on US Highway 441.
Six programs are planned from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and the complete schedule is included below. This year the park will welcome back to the stage Knoxville musician Matt Morelock with his friend, fiddler Ferd Moyse of the Hackensaw Boys. The duo will play two sets, at 2:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m.
Back again for the first time in several years will be a free performance on Saturday night in the city of Gatlinburg. Steve Brown and Hurricane Ridge will play their blend of old-time and modern bluegrass on the plaza outside of the Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies from 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.
The Sunday afternoon program at the Smoky Mountain Visitor Center in Cosby, Tennessee, will feature traditional Appalachian religious music with an old-fashioned community sing- along from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. General admission is $4, and the visitor center is located at 4381 Cosby Highway in the small community of Cosby, TN 37722.
“We’ve been offering Music of the Mountains since 2005 to celebrate old time music and to educate our visitors about the instruments, playing styles, and history behind the tunes,” said Supervisory Park Ranger Kent Cave. “The partnerships with our neighbors in Cosby, Gatlinburg and Townsend allow us to paint a more complete picture of the various types of music played here in the southern mountains.”
Here's the complete schedule of events:
April 19th at 7 p.m. Great Smoky Mountain Heritage Center, Townsend, Tennessee. Celtic Music by “Four Leaf Peat.” Admission: $ 5
April 20th. Sugarlands Visitor Center, Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Admission is free.
10 am - Lost Mill String Band
11 am – Boogertown Gap Band
12 pm – Brien Fain
1 pm – Tony Thomas
2 pm – Matt Morelock and Ferd Moyse
3 pm – Matt Morelock and Ferd Moyse
4 pm – Mountain Strings
April 20th, 7 - 8:30 p.m. Plaza at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Music by Steve Brown and Hurricane Ridge. Admission is free.
April 21st, 2 p.m. - 4 p.m. Smoky Mountain Visitor Center, Cosby, Tennessee. “Heritage, Harps and Hymns” – traditional offerings from Cocke County. Admission: $4
If you enjoy the "real deal" in traditional mountain music but can't make it to these live events, you can always order a copy of the "Old-Time Smoky Mountain Music" CD, which was produced by the park's nonprofit educational partner, Great Smoky Mountains Association. That disk includes 34 historic songs, ballads, and instrumentals recorded on-site in the Smokies in 1939.