Puddin’ On a Show at Farm and Fun Time - The Birthplace of Country Music
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Puddin’ On a Show at Farm and Fun Time

Great singers and songwriters were showcased at November’s Farm and Fun Time! Thanks to our sponsor Eastman Credit Union, Radio Bristol was able to bring the program not only to those in the audience or tuned in to WBCM-LP, but to viewers far and wide via Facebook Live. Be sure to like WBCM – Radio Bristol on Facebook to tune in every month!

Starting the show with their familiar harmonies, Bill and the Belles kicked off the evening with a rousing set that included the classic “I Get the Blues When It Rains.” Our “Heirloom Recipe” segment was presented by none other than Kinney Rorrer, acclaimed old-time music scholar and the great-nephew of both Posey Rorrer and Charlie Poole. Kinney recalled a favorite dessert his mother made: banana pudding. Kinney’s mother learned to make the dessert from her grandmother, who prepared it as part of the meals she would sell to mill workers. Kinney believed that banana pudding of that quality could never be found again when his mother passed away, but he was delighted to find his neighbor, a transplanted South Carolinian, could make it just like his mother did. To commemorate this sweet southern staple, Bill and the Belles composed an ode dedicated to pudding. And everyone was ready for a big serving afterwards!

Kinney Rorrer delivering an “a-peeling” recipe for banana pudding. Bill and the Belles croon a tune about pudding without a single slip up. © Birthplace of Country Music; photographer: Billie Wheeler

Up first on the show was McKay & Leigh. Composed of veteran songwriters and performers Noel McKay and Brennen Leigh, the duo performed covers of classic duets and original compositions, dazzling the Farm and Fun Time audience with their wordplay. Two of Leigh’s original compositions “John Deere Model H” and “Analog” were among the most outstanding songs of the evening, as they convey the longing for days gone by that seems to be a common thread among country music musicians and fans alike. The message of “Analog” is timely in our current age of technology, which sometimes overwhelms the more human side of things and serves as a reminder that we should just put the phone down and enjoy life again.

McKay & Leigh sang beautifully hand-crafted songs in perfect harmony. © Birthplace of Country Music; photographer: Billie Wheeler

For this month’s “Farm Report,” we did something a little bit different, visiting Taylor Malone in Johnson City, Tennessee. Though not technically a farmer, Taylor forages for food across the Tri-Cities and finds wild and tasty foods where you’d least expect them.  Check out this video of our visit with Taylor at the Mountain Home Food Forest:

Following the “Farm Report,” Kinney Rorrer joined host band Bill and the Belles for a rendition of Charlie Poole’s “Goodbye, Booze.” Kinney grew up hearing stories about Charlie Poole and Posey Rorrer’s larger-than-life exploits, and he works to tell these stories and share their music in his own band The New North Carolina Ramblers. Our last musical guest of the evening was Smithsonian Folkways recording artists Lula Wiles. A trio made up of Isa Burke, Eleanor Buckland, and Mali Obomsawin, Lula Wiles draws heavily from their early experiences playing folk music in New England and the social consciousness that is associated with that tradition. Playing songs with thought-invoking messages, Lula Wiles presented songs off their record and finished up with the Dolly Parton classic “The Pain of Loving You.

Lula Wiles performed a dynamic set of music from their recent Smithsonian Folkways release. © Birthplace of Country Music; photographer: Billie Wheeler

Thanks to everyone who came out and made this a wonderful evening of fun and music! There are still a few tickets left for December’s Farm and Fun Time Christmas Ball on Friday, December 13. Be a part of our live audience and celebrate the holiday season with High Fidelity, The McLain Family Band, and host band Bill and the Belles!

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