The roots of American music run deep in North Carolina. North Carolinians have made brilliant, groundbreaking contributions to many of America’s most important musical genres: John Coltrane, Nina Simone, and Thelonious Monk in jazz; Charlie Poole, Earl Scruggs, and Doc Watson in bluegrass; Elizabeth Cotten, Blind Boy Fuller, and Etta Baker in Piedmont blues; Reverend Faircloth Barnes and Shirley Caesar in gospel; Maceo and Melvin Parker, Nat Jones and George Clinton in funk; and Link Wray, Roberta Flack, James Taylor, and Don Gibson in rock, R&B, pop and country. Today new generations of North Carolina musicians are building on this rich legacy by making their own mark in hip hop, indie music and more. This year we tell that story.
Elizabeth "Libba" Cotten
The State of North Carolina, through the Department of Natural & Cultural Resources and the North Carolina Arts Council have developed The Year of Music campaign: Come Hear NC to tell North Carolina’s story through music. During 2019, we will celebrate the composers, musicians, studios, venues, instrument makers, labels, record stores, promoters, places, listeners and communities who create, support, and sustain our music through daily web-stories, artist interviews, special commissions, North Carolina musician stages at major festivals, educational programming and performances.
Join our campaign by subscribing to our monthly newsletter and to our RSS feed for daily posts, podcasts, videos and trivia about North Carolina music.
Share your favorite North Carolina music memories, artists and venues by tagging us on social and using #ComeHearNC and join us at one of our special music events.
We will kick off this exciting Year of Music when the award-winning Oxford American magazine dedicates the annual music issue to North Carolina! This special issue will be on newsstands in late November and Oxford American will celebrate our state’s musical legacy with three concert events across the state in late November.