Gospel singer with keyboardist. Penny Smith has a fabulous, powerful voice. She is increasing her performances at public events, having mostly sung at her church at age 5, school choirs, and glee clubs. She has performed with Gospel New Birth, Classic Funk Orchestra (R&B Funk Band Greensboro), Knights of Soul (Greensboro), House of Dues, and The Mighty Fairlanes. She sings on one of Medicine Men's albums. At Art in the Arboretum she will provide a gospel/folk performance. In May 2021 Penny was awarded by Mayor Nancy Vaughan the Piedmont Blues Preservation Society’s 2021 “Keeping the Blues Alive” Award at the Carolina Blues Festival.
1:00 - 1:45
Demeanor (Justin Harrington)
A young Greensboro musical genius who combines folk music & Hip Hop/Rap in a unique style. Demeanor combines various musical genres into a whole -- from development of the banjo in Africa to its use in modern Rap as a folk music of its own. “Demeanor” Justin Harrington is an artist born in Greensboro, North Carolina. He merges hip hop and folk music to create a fresh, unorthodox form of folk music, Harrington bridges the gap between contemporary and traditional cultural music. professionally trained as an actor, he weaves storytelling and character to engage and inspire all around him. Demeanor studied at the College Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati. Harrington toured with his aunt, Rhiannon Giddens, on her "Freedom Highway" tour. He is a 2019 alumnus of OneBeat, 2020 Folk Alliance International official showcase artist, featured performer at 2020 NC Folk Festival, and was featured on the Americana award-nominated album “Freedom Highway.” He recently performed at the Newport Folk Festival 2021.
2:00 - 2:45
Jeffrey Dean Foster
Solo acoustic guitar, folk pop/rock, singer songwriter. Released his newest album July 30, 2021. Over a rich career in the national music scene, spanning four decades (The Right Profile, The Carneys, and The Pinetops), being courted by prominent producers, scoring an entire Angus MacLachlan film, racking up accolades from all the right music magazines, and being labelmates with Whitney Houston, Jeffrey Dean Foster returned to Winston-Salem to write and produce his own music. During the pandemic, he wrote and produced a new album, to be released at the end of July, that he considers to rank among his very best work. Jeffrey Dean Foster’s songs "sort of ambush you. They latch onto the melody, all of the visceral stuff sets in, you forget whatever it was you were doing, and totally live within that three minutes. It’s when you realize, later, that it might just be a protest tune you’ve been singing along with that you enter the unpacking phase of the relationship. Is this song about wanting to be right where you are, now, or literally anywhere else? Foster has the uncanny ability to write a song that kicks in the door, but then, in no time flat, you invite it to move in. It may be a false start or an unexpected guitar stab that initially gets your attention, but it’s the tenacious choruses, and production easter eggs, that reveal themselves with repeat listens that keep you hanging around. The past year has been a hard reset for a lot of people, and that’s manifested itself in a lot of different ways. The better of us have probably landed on some combination of questioning privilege, power dynamics, what we think we know, and our place in the modern world. Also, how ... do we even handle ourselves when one of the most irresponsible things one can do is walk out the front door? All of this culminates in the message we should have arrived at after having so much time alone with our thoughts: there is absolutely no reason to put off what needs to be said now, because you never know what tomorrow is going to bring. It’s easy to get caught up in the world class riff that delivers the message, but Foster’s plea for you to “tell somebody you love them, today” is something we really need to be reminded of right now." ... Alex Maiolo
3:00 - 3:45
The Alley Rabbits
The Alley Rabbits perform popular folk/rock/pop tunes with a bluegrass flavor. The Alley Rabbits (Bill Payne, Nancy McCurry, Tim Barkley, Keith Buckner, Bobby Doolittle) are masterful performers of traditional bluegrass music and harmonies, who reimagine favorite rock/pop hits into energetic, bluegrass-flavored classics. They play 60s, 70s, and 80s classics in a bluegrass style - very upbeat, animated, great harmonies, and FUN! They are all very talented musicians (guitars, banjo, mandolin, acoustic bass, dobro). They were featured at NC Folk Festival 2019 Music Spots Program, and at a NC Folk Festival 2019 press conference, at TEDxGreensboro 2019, at Green Hill Gallery 2021. Crowds love them and are enthusiastic and even dance to their music.
4:00 - 4:45
A fun, lively family folk rock band, mostly acoustic, that has played music together since childhood. Acoustic rock with huge harmonies, featuring Brad Gray, Barry Gray, Bev Gray Gude and Dave Gude. Their father was a musician and fan of all the great music of the 1960s-70s, so they grew up loving that music and still perform all the hits from that era. They have great harmonies, acoustic 6-string & 12-string guitars, electric guitar, banjo, mandolin, bodhran (Irish drum), flute. Originals plus "Graymatterized" songs from the 60s and 70s. Artists covered include: Creedence Clearwater Revival, Beatles, Rolling Stones, CSNY, Pure Prarie League, Tom Petty, Neil Young, Rod Stewart, The Band, Old Crow Medicine Show, The Mamas and the Papas, The Monkees, Paul Simon, Simon and Garfunkel, The Everly Brothers, Ricky Nelson, Elvis Presley, The Kingston Trio, The Byrds, Badfinger, The Grateful Dead, Five Man Electric Band, Otis Redding, The Doors, Old and In the Way, Cat Stevens, Jim Croce, James Taylor, Bob Dylan.