Folk music sets tone at storytellings

Published 11:09 pm Thursday, January 27, 2011

Roots music or folk music, no matter how the music is described, it is the music of the South.

And, that’s the music that will settle folks in at the Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival that opens tonight at the We Piddle Around Theater in Brundidge and continues Saturday at the Trojan Center Theater on the Troy University campus.

“When our storytelling festival started five years ago, we wanted to continue the tradition of opening our events with traditional music,” said Annette Bryan, a member of the storytelling committee. “So, we invited local groups to open the four storytelling concerts and people come early and really seem to enjoy the music.”

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The pre-show music begins about 30 minutes before the storytelling concerts and those who attend all four events will be entertained by different bands of musicians.

Opening the Festival tonight will be the Good News Blues, a group that plays Delta-style, acoustic gospel blues and features the slide guitar, acoustic guitar, upright bass and the harmonica, which gives the band a unique sound.

On Saturday morning, the audience will be entertained by the Benton Brothers and Company, a bluegrass gospel band that is the featured band at Alabama’s Official Folk life Play, “Come Home, It’s Suppertime.”

The Lighthouse String Ensemble bluegrass gospel band will open for the 2 p.m. storytelling concert. The Lighthouse musicians have been playing together for 16 years and are regulars at the Sullivan Showcase in Nashville and have appeared at Bill Monroe’s Bluegrass Festival in Bean Blossom, Indiana.

The WPA Scratch Band will open for the 6:30 p.m. storytelling concert.

The band instruments include a washtub and scrub board. The band has gained a measure of fame as the Sympathy Band at the We Piddle Around Theater.

Everyone is encouraged to come early and enjoy the pre-show music that opens the storytelling concerts.

Tickets are available for the 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. concerts by calling 334-735-3125 or 735-3675 and on site at The Messenger.

The Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival is sponsored in part by the Alabama State Council on the Arts, with support from the National Endowment of the Arts.