Some of Our Favorite Music Pages

Here is a list of other home pages we have found to be of interest to the acoustic music lover.

  • Howard  Morgen – My mentor and dear friend, Howard Morgen, passed away after a long, hard fought battle with cancer. While he is no longer with us, the legacy of his music and instructional material that he left behind will be a comforting reminder of his love of guitar and his dedication to the guitar playing community.  We feel so blessed that he was able to play on our CD before he passed and he actually got to hear the results! His website has been left active in his honor. Do check out his numerous videos on YouTube which are a “must watch” as well as some fantastic guitar lessons on Truefire.Com.
  • Bruce Emery  – A local, Raleigh resident, Bruce is a wonderful guitar player and teacher. He is the author of the most excellent Skeptical Guitarist series of books (over 40,000 copies sold!). Catch Bruce on guitar and mandolin on some Saturday mornings from 10-12pm at the Global Village coffee house across from NC State. Call first to make sure he’s playing that day.
  • Brien Barbour – Another good friend and a terrifically talented local singer-songwriter and songster extraordinaire! Wears great hats too!
  • Al Petteway and Amy White – Al is a grammy award winning guitarist and composer currently living in Asheville, NC (formerly from my home town – DC). He has several albums out along with his lovely wife Amy that are a must hear! It was one of the major  highlights of my guitar playing career to share the stage with Al at one of the Guitar Weeks at the Swannanoa Gathering.
  • Steve Krenz – Steve is a session guitarist, speaker, and teacher out of Nashville, TN. He has a wealth of teaching materials at his site Mighty Oak Music and he runs an annual Guitar Gathering in Nashville that is well worth attending. He is also the author of Gibson Guitar’s Learn and Master series of guitar instruction.
  • Carrie Newcomer – A remarkable singer songwriter whose voice is as smooth as melted milk chocolate. As she says, “Songwriting is not about being clever, flashy or fancy.  It is about telling a compelling story in language and music with elegance and clarity.”
  • Kate Campbell – If you like Mary Chapin Carpenter or Lucinda Williams, you will love this lady! Great songwriter!
  • Cheryl Wheeler – Extensive coverage of all her albums, background and history of her songs , sound clips.
  • Mary Chapin Carpenter – her website with all the latest news and music.
  • Kathy Mattea – What a great voice this lady has and one of the nicest people you will ever meet! Her website has all sorts of sound clips as well as her latest performance schedule.
  • Jon Vezner – Kathy Mattea’s husband and an incredible songwriter. He wrote the Grammy and CMA award winning song, “Where’ve You Been” with Don Henry, which was sung beautifully by Kathy. Jane was so fortunate to be able to take a song writing class with Jon at one of the Swannanoa Gatherings.
  • Adam Rafferty – ah, the funk-meister! Adam’s playing will get you moving. When you have a chance, give a listen to some of his toe-tapping fingerstyle arrangements on YouTube!
  • Scott Ainslie – Well known for his mastery of blues and slide guitar as well as being a blues historian, he can also sing where you feel his songs, not just hear them!
  • Kate Wolf – Information and music about the late folksinger.
  • Pete Huttlinger  – Pete is a phenomenal guitarist who is at home with acoustic fingerstyle,  jazz, folk, or bossa nova. Sadly, he passed away after fighting back from a stroke that left him partially paralyzed, but has left us with a wealth of wonderful guitar music. He has several albums out, but my favorites are the Santa Rita Connection and Fingerpicking Wonder (Stevie Wonder tunes). You’ve got to hear his solo (no double tracking  here folks) rendition of Stevie Wonder’s Superstition.  I saw him play this in concert all by his lonesome. All one can say is “wow”! Check out his wonderful CDs and corresponding music transcriptions on his website.
  • Richard Smith – (no relation unfortunately) Another phenomenally gifted guitar player who can play phenomenally well in any style.
  • Doyle Dykes – another awesome fingerstyle player, a protege of Chet Atkins, and luminary of the Grand Ole Opry. A former Taylor guitar clinician as well. A consumate player and gentleman.
  • Ed Gerhard – Another  grammy award winning guitarist who has more soul in his hands than James Brown! He plays with such grace and dignity, yet is one of the most humble, down-to-earth person I’ve met. I had the great pleasure of meeting him at one of the Guitar Weeks  in Swannanoa.
  • Stan Rogers – The official Stan Rogers home page. One of our very favorite singer/songwriters. Stan’s song, Lies, will just bring tears to your eyes.
  • Dougie MacLean – Another wonderful singer/songwriter, Dougie has been referred to as the “James Taylor” of Scotland. Kathy Mattea has covered several of his songs.
  • Don Smith – Another local Raleigh musician and former member of Emerson, Smith & Phelps (ESP), Don is now playing solo at coffee houses across the Triangle drawing his material from traditional American artists such as The Carter Family as well as from more recent singer-songwriters such as Norman Blake.

Local Places to Hear Great Acoustic Music

  • Sacred Grounds Coffeehouse – a wonderful, welcoming community atmosphere and a great place to hear acoustic music. One of our most favorite places to perform!
  • Irregardless Cafe – A downtown Raleigh landmark for over 40 years! Great food that is reasonably priced with music throughout most of the week. Arthur Gordon, along with his lovely wife Anya, are the owners of the Irregardless Cafe where they have nurtured its growth as a friendly place to dine, enjoy live music and/or have your wedding or corporate event catered by. Truly a Raleigh treasure.
  • Bynum Front Porch Music Series –  this music series contains a wide variety of music acts of varying styles every Friday throughout the summer that’s well worth your time to check out.
  • Oasis at Carr Mill Mall – located in Carrboro, this intimate venue serves organic Counter Culture Coffee , kava, large selection of organic teas, smoothies and lemonade, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan meals from Vimala’s Curryblossom Cafe, veggie quiches from Whole Foods, personal no-GMOs Naan pizzas, organic North Coast beer, wine, gluten-free, vegan, raw and regular pastries (from The Vegan Lover in Durham and Luna’s Living Kitchen in Raleigh), and fine chocolates from Matthews Chocolates in Hillsborough. Live music most every Saturday.
  • The Roost Beer Garden – set in the middle of  Fearrington Village Center (between Pittsboro and Chapel Hill off of 15-501) in lovely tree-covered outdoor setting. The Roost offers local brews, wine by the glass, live music, variety of light sandwiches and salads as well as wood-fired pizza during the spring, summer and fall. A great place to meet with friends and relax on a sunny spring/summer afternoon or evening.
  • Global Village Coffee House – Right across from NC State, this coffee house offers a relaxed atmosphere and acoustic music. Try their Cafe Milano it is outrageously good! You might find Bruce “the skeptical guitarist” Emery playing solo fingerstyle guitar and mandolin there Saturday mornings.
  • The Mill – Located in the heart of downtown Fuquay-Varina on South Main street, The Mill is a great destination for families and friends to gather and talk over a cup of coffee, a local craft beer, or a glass of wine. Their open space creates the perfect climate for live music. They have special events and live music most every week.
  • Pittsboro Road House – Located in quaint downtown Pittsboro, this cafe offers good food and has acoustic music each Tuesday and Thursday.

Music Stores and Other Resources

Note, we have no business relationship with any of these companies. For most of them, we have just been satisfied customers.

  • Harry’s Guitar Shop – a well established local Raleigh music store that sells a wide variety of acoustic and electric instruments. One of the few privately owned music stores left in our area.
  • Sound Pure – another great place for boutique amps and high end electrics and acoustics. A big Collings and Eastman dealer as well as several other boutique brands, they are located in downtown Durham near the old Durham Bulls baseball stadium (of Bull-Durham fame).
  • Elderly Music – one of the best family run online music stores with broad inventory of acoustic instruments and accessories. They have an incredible instrument repair department (over 10 technicians) that specializes in pre-war Martin restorations to give you an idea of how expert they are. We’ve purchased several instruments from them over the years where the setup was about as perfect as one could get.
  • Artisan Guitars – specializes in high end acoustic guitars (Collings, Santa Cruz, Bourgeois, Huss and Dalton) and mandolins. Great friendly and personal service with a very knowledgeable staff.
  • Ron’s Pickin  Parlor – great place for lessons and good deals on Collings, Eastman, and Blueridge guitars!
  • High Strung Guitars – a wonderful, down-home, local Durham music store that caters to acoustic music.
  • Art of the Solo Performer – Great reference for performance tips. Steve Rapson also has written a great book about it.
  • Collings Guitar Forum – an excellent, user friendly forum for discussion of Collings guitars as well as other brands of instruments on a wide variety of topics.
  • Henriksen Amplifiers – this amp manufacturer produces top quality jazz and acoustic guitar amplifiers for the gigging musician with a discerning ear for tonal quality. Their Bud model is one of the smallest, truly giggable guitar amplifiers on the market. While we have no relationship with this company, I heard one of these amps at a local jazz performance and was very impressed with the volume and tone coming from such a small amp (9x9x9 inches, 17 pounds, 120 watts)! SoundPure carries them if you’re interested in hearing these amps firsthand.
  • Carr Amps – we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention an outstanding local boutique tube amp manufacturer, Carr Amps, in Pittsboro, NC. While geared more toward the electric guitar player, they have a wide variety of point-to-point, hand wired amps to suit any playing style.
  • Headstrong Amps – Headstrong has become a go-to company for boutique hand wired point to point Fender style (black face) tube amps; all the while providing original designs that improve or enhance the classic Fender tube amps. Located in right here in NC in Asheville.

If anyone finds additional areas of interest along the lines of the above, we’d love to hear about them!


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