Jeni And Billy Bring Appalachian Folk To Charles And Myrtle's Saturday

Sunday, September 16, 2012
Jeni and Billy will play at Charles and Myrtle's Coffeehouse on Saturday.
Jeni and Billy will play at Charles and Myrtle's Coffeehouse on Saturday.

Jeni and Billy will bring Appalachian Folk to Charles & Myrtle's Coffeehouse on Saturday at 8 p.m.  The coffeehouse is inside Christ Unity Church at 105 McBrien Road.  There is a $10 suggested donation at the door.  Call 892-4960 for more information or visit www.christunity.org.

Review for Jeni and Billy:

You have to watch where you sit at a Jeni and Billy concert, because that ordinary-looking folding chair might just turn into the back seat of a big ole Buick hurtling down the switchback of a coal truck road.

That barstool might turn out to be the rock-hard sinners pew of a white-washed mountain church. That couch might be a marble stoop on a gritty street in Baltimore, and that velvet theater cushion could just be the well-worn driver's seat of a wagon headed across the windswept Texas plains. 

The high twang of a banjo starts it off -- or maybe the mournful lilt of the mandolin. Then, a train comes barreling down the reeds of a harmonica. The guitar catches fire and lifts two voices into the high lonesome harmonies of the Appalachian mountains, painting pictures of miners and millworkers, roustabouts and revival preachers, Buicks and beauty queens. 

From Nashville to LA, from Chicago to Tampa, from Beverly, Yorkshire to Conwy, Wales -- Jeni and Billy have traveled more than 150,000 miles in four years, just to paint pictures in song for thousands of people. At festivals and fiddlers' conventions along the way, they have picked up ribbons in songwriting, traditional folk-singing, guitar-picking, and flatfoot dancing.

Jeni and Billy bring to their work distinct musical backgrounds that draw from the deep well of Appalachian roots music. 

Jeni Hankins traces her vocal style to Virginia Lowe, the blind music minister of the Friendly Chapel Church on Smith Ridge, the Appalachian community in which Jeni spent her childhood summers. A natural storyteller and prolific writer since childhood, Jeni trained formally with Pulitzer-Prize-winning Northern Irish poet, Paul Muldoon, and earned a Masters in English Literature. While her singing has been compared to the lonesome voices of Maybelle Carter and Iris Dement, her writing has been likened to that of Southerners Carson McCullers, Flannery O’Connor, and Lee Smith. 

Billy Kemp, a Baltimore native, embraced the sound of country music in the nearby community of Oella — the home of Appalachian migrants who came to the city looking for work in the mills. Fired on by dreams of the Grand Old Opry and his passion for the sound of Flatt & Scruggs, Billy headed to Nashville and toured with country bands all over the US, Canada, Germany, and right onto the stage of the Opry. He honed and shared his skills as both student and instructor at the University of Maryland, and built a producing career working with roots artists.   

Mountain roads and mountain churches, moonshine and oxycodone, snake handlers and sherbet cake -- you get to know them all at a Jeni and Billy concert. You might arrive a stranger, but you'll leave a member of the family.

More information on the duo is available at jeniandbilly.com; their CDs are available on CDBaby.com.



Choral Arts Of Chattanooga Has Our Musical Heritage Concert Oct. 13

Choral Arts of Chattanooga will present Our Musical Heritage, with special guests Dr. John Hamm and David Friberg, founding director and accompanist, on Friday, Oct. 13.  This first concert of the 2017-2018 season, will be held Friday, Oct. 13, at 7:30 p.m. A reception will follow to honor Dr. Hamm and Mr. Friberg.  This program includes ... (click for more)

UTC Music Faculty Concert Features Schmitt And Walters

UTC music faculty members Clint Schmitt and David Walters will host an evening of music from the 20th century for saxophone and piano on Friday, Oct. 6, at 7:30 p.m.   Review for the concert and performers:  Emotions range from playful to sultry, serious and contemplative to exuberant joy.  It's a recital that will keep the listener enthralled.  The ... (click for more)

3 Separate Shootings Early Sunday Morning Leave 1 Critically Injured, Another In Serious Condition

Chattanooga Police responded to three shootings, early Sunday morning. Jelani Sorrell, 33, was injured in the first shooting.  Chattanooga Police officers responded at 1:26 a.m. to a person shot at the Sky Zoo Night Club.  Upon arrival they were able to locate Sorrell suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. Sorrell was transported to a local hospital in critical ... (click for more)

Prosecutor Calls For "Meaningful Punishment" For Dyer, Brennan In $4.9 Million Swindle

Federal prosecutor James Brooks is calling for a "meaningful sentence" for Doug Dyer and James Brennan, who are charged in a $4.9 million swindle. He rejected arguments that they should receive leniency due to their age and health problems. They are set to be sentenced next Friday at 9 a.m. by Judge Travis McDonough. Prosecutor Brooks said concerning Dyer, "As this Court ... (click for more)

Fix Obamacare, Don't Repeal It - And Response (2)

John McCain recently said, "I cannot in good conscience vote for the Graham-Cassidy proposal. I believe we could do better working together, Republicans and Democrats, and have not yet really tried. Nor could I support it without knowing how much it will cost, how it will affect insurance premiums, and how many people will be helped or hurt by it. Without a full (Congressional Budget ... (click for more)

Roy Exum - Wrong Never An Option

In the Navy SEALS, there are two ways you should ever do a task: “The right way” and “Again.” We as a society admit failure when we take the much-besmirched path of “the lesser of two evils” because the destination will always be “wrong.” It’s true: ‘start wrong-end wrong’ happens every time. Evil, no matter to what degree, is always wrong and when the Hamilton County School Board ... (click for more)