Asheville live music best bets: Graham Nash, Golden Shoals, Tony Furtado, more

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Golden Shoals will play March 11 in the Taproom at Highland Brewing.
Golden Shoals will play March 11 in the Taproom at Highland Brewing.

Amy Alvey and Mark Kilianski, the duo known as Golden Shoals, were based in Asheville until the COVID-19 pandemic prompted geographic shifts for each performer.

Alvey now resides in Nashville, while Kilianski is in Vancouver.

The duo, though, is back on the road and readying for a sort of homecoming show. The old-time musicians will perform at 6 p.m. March 11 in the Taproom at Highland Brewing.

“It's always a bit of nostalgia, and a lot of fun,” Kilianski said in an email interview of returning to town. “Some friends have moved away, some friends have moved in. There's always something changing, for better or worse. The city was already ballooning, in terms of development and rental prices, so to see that trend continue is disheartening. Luckily some of the best music venues are still standing.”

Golden Shoals formed in Boston, coming together due to their mutual love of folk music. Their sound now includes elements of country, Americana, indie and experimental music, but there’s still an old-time and bluegrass feel to the music.

Alvey and Kilianski released their first EP in 2014 and have followed that with several singles and three full-length albums, including 2020’s self-titled release.

“Our first album was very much us trying to find our voice/voices in folk music,” Kilianski said. “We each had been working at leaning string band styles for three to five years, so were still quite new. Now when we release an album of traditional music, we're very confident in the way we're approaching it stylistically. And with our original stuff, we're more willing to branch out and include some of our other influences in the production.”

Each artist has been writing new songs, and Kilianski said they are working on new material to record. The geographic distance between them, along with the way music is now consumed, he said, will change how they release music. The plan is to record singles and release them in intervals of two months, and they are looking for producers to help expand the duo’s sound, Kilianski said.

Until then, fans can catch Golden Shoals as it returns to the touring scene.

“The return to shows has been mixed,” Kilianski said. “The feeling of performing for and connecting with an audience is why we do this. The continuing presence of COVID is stressful though. If we get it, we may have to cancel gigs. If someone in the audience gets it at a show, we would feel responsible for that. We're out here doing the best we can and trying to enjoy the good things whenever possible.”

2-time hall of famer comes to Diane Wortham Theatre

Graham Nash performs on stage during the Cambridge Folk Festival 2019 at Cherry Hinton Hall on Aug. 02, 2019 in Cambridge, England.
Graham Nash performs on stage during the Cambridge Folk Festival 2019 at Cherry Hinton Hall on Aug. 02, 2019 in Cambridge, England.

To call Graham Nash only a musician would be a massive understatement. Yes, Nash has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on two occasions (with The Hollies and as a member of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young), but music isn’t all he is remarkable at creating.

Nash, who will perform an intimate show of songs and stories at 8 p.m. March 16 at the Diana Wortham Theatre, is also a painter and photographer. His book of photos, “A Life in Focus,” was released in 2021.

“I paint, collect, sculpt, write songs, write poetry and I take photographs,” Nash said in an interview before an Asheville show in 2018. “I want to create every single day and I need to create every single day.”

Nash has also been inducted into two songwriter Halls of Fame. He is responsible for classics like “Carrie Anne,” “He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother,” “The Air I Breathe,” and “Long Cool Woman In A Black Dress” during his time with The Hollies and “Our House” and “Teach Your Children” from his time in Crosby, Stills and Nash. This show will give the legendary performer a chance to talk about the songs he is performing.

Hillbilly-inspired banjoist plays American Vinyl Co.

Tony Furtado will perform March 16 at American Vinyl Co.
Tony Furtado will perform March 16 at American Vinyl Co.

Tony Furtado’s banjo can be heard on recordings by musicians like Alison Krauss, Jerry Douglas, Tim O’Brien, and Stuart Duncan.

Furtado, a California native, was actually inspired to play the bluegrass instrument by watching a California-based TV show, “The Beverly Hillbillies,” when he was 12 years old. He won the National Bluegrass Banjo Championship in Winfield, Kansas, in 1987 and has embarked on a long career in music.

Furtado, who will play at 7 p.m. March 16 at American Vinyl Co., recently release “Decembering,” a 10-song album that includes a tremendous version of The Beatles classic “Here Comes The Sun.”

Mixing laughs and songs

Singer-songwriter Lynne Hanson isn’t a comedian, but she can make you laugh. Her in-between song banter with her audiences often leaves fans chuckling a bit.

You can experience this for yourself when the Ottawa-based singer performs at 7 p.m. March 12 in the lounge at Isis Music Hall.

Hanson, whose music has been described as “porch music with a little red dirt,” recently released a single titled “Hip Like Cohen,” which is an homage to the legendary Leonard Cohen. It is the second single off her upcoming album, “Ice Cream In November,” which will be released April 22.

This article originally appeared on Asheville Citizen Times: Upcoming Asheville live music includes Graham Nash, Tony Furtado, more