The Music

Southwest Virginia is immersed in rich, musical talent. Experience the quiet, soulful strum of the autoharp, the ringing melody of the bluegrass banjo, and the high, lonesome vocals of a gospel tune. The endearing harmonies and haunting ballads of our mountain music are regarded as national treasures.

Friday Night Performance, 6 p.m., Goodloe Center


Dan & Robin Kessinger

Robin Kessinger is a national flatpick guitar champion and member of the legendary Kessinger family of traditional music. Robin coordinates Guitar Week at the Augusta Heritage Center and teaches in major guitar camps nationwide
Dan Kessinger is consumate teacher and player of flatpick guitar and fiddle, Robin’s brother and another heir to the formidable Kessinger family talent.


Bill and the Bells

Bill & the Belles

With striking three-part harmonies and masterful instrumentation, Bill and the Belles skillfully breathe new life into the sounds of early country music. At the foothills of the Blue Ridge and the forefront of old time music, Bill and the Belles (Johnson City, Tennessee) continue to further the music traditions of their region. From sentimental Southern ballads to the popular songs of Tin Pan Alley to regional fiddle breakdowns, a Bill and the Belles show is a celebration of the diversity country music once represented.


Dale Jett & Hello Stranger

Singer and musician, Dale Jett is a native of Southwest Virginia. He is a third generation member of the legendary Carter Family. The son of Janette Carter, the grandson of A.P.and Sara Carter, his roots have been heavily steeped within the heart of his family’s musical heritage. Growing up within the Carter Family, Dale has been influenced by many musicians and styles of music.Whether playing an original tune, or that of others, “Hello Stranger’s”  music will ring true to the soul.Dale helped emcee and the trio performed at the Carter Family Fold for many years. Their group,”Hello Stranger”, features Dale as he carries on the Carter Family tradition. Teresa Jett plays bass, and Oscar Harris plays guitar, mandolin and autoharp.

Sparky and Rhonda Rucker

Sparky and Rhonda Rucker

Sparky and Rhonda Rucker perform throughout the U.S. as well as overseas, singing songs and telling stories from the American folk tradition. Sparky Rucker has been performing over forty years and is internationally recognized as a leading folklorist, musician, historian, storyteller, and author. He accompanies himself with fingerstyle picking and bottleneck blues guitar, banjo, and spoons. Rhonda Rucker is a musician, children’s author, storyteller, and songwriter. Her blues-style harmonica, piano, old-time banjo, and bones add musical versatility to their performances.

Tommy Bledsoe, Rich Kirby, & Kelsey Rae Copeland

Rick Kirby Tommy Bledsoe Kelsea Rae

Long-time Home Craft Days favorites Rich Kirby and Tommy Bledsoe will be kick off the festival. Kelsey Rae Copeland is a 27-year-old from southwestern Virginia whose musical personality and voice are a combination of a clear, almost haunting, lonesome mountain singing style with country roots and youthful energy. Called a throwback most of her life, her musical inspiration comes from the vinyl sounds in her collection of the likes of Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Hank Williams and others, and she’s all about the distinctive whine of the pedal steel guitar along with the traditional guitar, mandolin, banjo and the mountain dulcimer.

Saturday, Oct. 15

Note: Schedule subject to change.

10 am Todd Meade, Debbie Adams, Beth Bailey/Osborne Family Band
10:30 Scott County JAM program
11:00 Patti and Glenn Roberts
11:30 Sycamore Hollow
12:00 Bill McCall & Southern Country
12:30 Lee Sexton and Son
1:00 Bill and the Belles and Center Stage Cloggers
1:45 Kelsey Rae
2:15 Dale Jett & Hello Stranger
3:00 Scott County Boys & Center Stage Cloggers
3:45 White Top Mountain Band and Center Stage Cloggers
4:30 Empty Bottle String Band
5:15 Town Branch Bluegrass Band
6:00 End of Saturday Program


10:30 Miss Ellie’s String Band
11:00 Wise JAM Program (Southwest Virginia Museum)
11:30 New Harvest Brothers
12:00 Angelyn DeBord
12:30 Richard Phillips, Tommy Clements, and Roger Bullock
1:00 Poor Valley Girls
1:45 Buttermilk Girls
2:30 High Test Grass
3:15 Jimmy and Ada McCown
4:00 New Circle Bluegrass
4:45 Sparky and Rhonda Rucker
5:30 End of Saturday Program


Sunday, Oct. 16

10:30 Skin and Bonz
11:00 The Childress Girls
11:45 Rich Kirby and Nate Polly
12:30 Pam Randolph & Doug Dorschug
1:00 T.V. Barnett and his Roan Mountain Moonshiners & Center Stage Cloggers
1:45 Fred O’Quinn and the Bluegrass Travelers and Center Stage Cloggers
2:30 Smith Family Singers
3:15 Sheets Family Band
4:00 Crooked Road Ramblers & Center Stage Cloggers
4:45 Poplar Hill Reunion
5:30 End of Sunday Program


11:00 Jack Wright and Roger Hall
11:45 Ben’s Boys
12:15 TBA
1:00 Brandon Maggard
1:45 Anndrena Belcher
2:30 Wolfe Brothers
3:15 Corbin Hayslett
4:00 Ron Short & the Possum Playboys
4:45 Nancy and Bill Smith
 5:30 End of Sunday Program