In 1928, Bascom Lamar Lunsford turned his vast knowledge of traditional music and his organizational skills to the creation of a local music festival. The Asheville Chamber of Commerce had long sponsored an annual Rhododendron Festival, highlighting mountain arts and crafts. . .
One voice seized me more than the rest. Over a simply picked banjo, the voice sang mournfully about a mole in the ground. Elsewhere, the same voice preached, over that same simple banjo, about dry bones. Like so many folk tunes, these told strange, elliptical stories, dense with images, exploding with emotion.