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Bluegrass, old-time on Opera House stage

October 30, 2010
The Inter-Mountain

Bluegrass and old-time music round out the first half of the 2010-2011 performance season at the Pocahontas County Opera House this November. An audience favorite, the Black Mountain Bluegrass Boys, returns to the Opera House on Nov. 6, while the Woodticks make their debut appearance on Nov. 20.

Both performances begin at 7:30 p.m. and admission is $7 at the door. Children 12 years and younger are admitted free of charge.

The Black Mountain Bluegrass Boys have become a Greenbrier Valley institution since the band was established in Pocahontas County in 1968. The band is hailed as one of the best bluegrass bands in the region, having become a local favorite and regional legend. The current band members are Richard Hefner on banjo, Jeff Hefner on mandolin, Chris Nickell on guitar and Mike Smith on bass - all West Virginia natives. They are well known for their "high lonesome" sound of classic bluegrass in the vein of Ralph Stanley, Bill Monroe and Jimmy Martin. The 'Boys always draw one of the biggest crowds of the season at the Opera House, so be sure to come early.

Two weeks later, the Woodticks will bring the first half of this season to a close with foot-tapping traditional music. Old-time is the core of The Woodticks' music. Many of the songs they play come from the rural south during the early, golden days of radio. Tunes from the early 20th century and earlier are alive in the hands and hearts of The Woodticks, though the melodies are filtered through their own style of string band. The Woodticks are Rachel Eddy on clawhammer banjo, fiddle and guitar, Keith McManus on fiddle, mandolin and banjo, Bob Shank on the dulcimer and banjo, and Karen Wade on guitar. They play old-time, along with maybe an Irish or Scottish tune or two, some originals and a few other tunes and songs that The Woodticks just really like and do their own way. And there's a whole lot of singing. When you get right down to it, The Woodticks all just really enjoy playing music together, so they do it whenever they can.

In addition to these events, be sure to mark your calendars for the Opera House's 100th birthday celebration on Friday and the annual Holiday Craft Show on Dec. 3 and 4. Watch The Pocahontas Times and the Opera House website, for more details.

The Pocahontas County Opera House is located at 818 Third Ave. in Marlinton. For information on other upcoming Opera House events, visit or call the Opera House at 304-799-6645. The performances by the Black Mountain Bluegrass Boys and The Woodticks are part of the 2010-2011 Performance Series sponsored by the Pocahontas County Opera House Foundation with financial assistance through a grant from the West Virginia Division of Culture and History and the National Endowment for the Arts, with approval from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts. Financial support is also provided by Pocahontas County Drama, Fairs and Festivals.

Fact Box

If you go ...

What: The Black Mountain Bluegrass Boys and the Woodticks

When: Nov. 6 and?Nov. 20 at 7:30 p.m.

Where: The Pocahontas County Opera House



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