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Cabin Creek Boys

Old-time and bluegrass
Southwest Virginia and northwest North Carolina

Cabin Creek BoysMany casual listeners outside the Appalachian region refer to all mountain music as bluegrass, but mountain music encompasses two distinct forms: bluegrass and its predecessor, old-time. Old-time string band music developed in the nineteenth century, when European and African musical styles converged in America’s first frontier, the Blue Ridge. Predominantly fiddle- and banjo-driven, old-time music is intended for dancing and entertainment at house parties, community gatherings, and jam sessions. Bluegrass is more performance-oriented. It blends old-time with the country music that emerged in the mid-twentieth century, and was pioneered by the likes of Bill Monroe, Earl Scruggs, and Lester Flatt. Both old-time and bluegrass remain vibrant and healthy musical forms, performed and enjoyed by distinctly different musical communities, sometimes at the very same events. The intersections between the two styles inspired The Cabin Creek Boys, who play old-time “hillbilly” music from the mountains of southwest Virginia and northwest North Carolina, performing at area fiddlers’ conventions, festivals, square dances, and other community events. Led by multi-instrumentalist husband and wife duo Chris and Erika Testerman, the band also includes Jackson Cunningham on guitar, Trish Kilby Fore on banjo, and Jerry Steinberg on bass. Both Jackson Cunningham and Chris Testerman also are excellent instrument makers, and both learned many of their skills from the late Audrey Hash Ham, a fiddle maker who was the daughter of legendary luthier Albert Hash. Jackson specializes in archtop guitars and Chris mostly makes fiddles.

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