Chapel Hill News

July 25, 2014

WCOM music show celebrates 200th episode Monday

The Carrboro-based “Americana Music Show” will celebrate its 200th episode Monday night with a tribute to local roots music bands.

The Carrboro-based “Americana Music Show” will celebrate its 200th episode Monday night with a tribute to local roots music bands.

The weekly show originates from WCOM, Carrboro’s community radio station, and is distributed world-wide via podcast. Host and producer Calvin Powers attributes the show’s longevity to the local music community.

“Most music podcasts don’t last nearly as long as the Americana Music Show has and I wanted to celebrate this milestone by saying thanks to the local bands, singers, and musicians for making it so much fun to produce the show,” he said. “And to be honest, I wanted to brag a little to the rest of the world about what a great music scene we have in Carrboro, Chapel Hill, Durham, and Raleigh.”

The Americana Music Show’s 200th episode features 32 local roots music acts including John Howie Jr and the Rosewood Bluff, Jefferson Hart and Ghosts of the Old North State, Jon Shain, Mandolin Orange, Michael Rank, Kenny Roby, Lynne Blakey, and Dom Flemons. Highlights from the 200th episode will be aired on WCOM at 9 p.m. Monday and can be heard at 103.5 FM in Carrboro and online at The full episode will be distributed via podcast and can be heard online at Americana Music

The 200th episode also features two historical tributes to musicians who lived in the area. The first historical tribute is to blues guitarist Libba Cotten, a self-taught blues guitarist famous for her Piedmont blues style of picking. Cotten grew up in Carrboro and was self-taught.

“Cotten lived just of Floyd street in Carrboro and WCOM is located next to the railroad tracks that inspired Cotten’s most famous tune, ‘Freight Train,’ Powers said. “I’ve unofficially dubbed our studios at WCOM the ‘Libba Cotten Memorial Studio.’”

The second historical tribute on the 200th episode is to the Rev. Gary Davis, a busker who played blues and gospel on the streets of Durham in the 1920s. Davis first recorded in Durham in the ’20s and later moved to Harlem where he was widely regarded as the best ragtime picker working at the time.

The Americana Music Show features “hand-picked, road-tested, American music” and emphasizes southern rock, blues, country, soul and other styles of music that originate from the deep South and Texas.

“I tell people that the show is “hand-picked” to let them know that a human being is choosing the show music carefully just for them instead using computer-driven algorithms that promote advertisers’ music,” Powers said. “I tell people the show is ‘road-tested’ to let them know this is a show that’s going to be fun to listen to in the car. I tell people that I’ll turn your commute into a road-trip!”

WCOM is a listener supported, volunteer-powered community station that broadcasts locally produced programming as well as news programming not available elsewhere in the Triangle area.

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