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NC music history

How NC Got Its Punk Attitude - Touching on 30+ years of NC music history, and focusing, as the title implies, on the thread leading from 60s regional garage-rock to 70s hardrock & protopunk, including the crucial Cigaretz, and on to the 80s hardcore scene. Sam Hicks hits all the high points, and this article is the definitive history of NC independent music & punkrock in the pre-90s/indie-rock era.

The Golden Age of North Carolina Music - Matt Barrett played music and went to a ton of shows in Chapel Hill in the 80s, and thus to his mind the 80s were the Golden Age. He backs up this assertion with this well-documented guide to the Chapel Hill Sound, back when that meant bands like the dBs and Let's Active, and not the Archers or Zen Frisbee. (As Matt says in his introduction, "I will agree that in the nineties there were certainly a lot more bands and some of them were (and are) pretty good. But rarely did the bands which followed combine the full package of songwriting, singing and musical ability that if not common in the eighties was at least evident in the most popular of the bands of this period.")

The Independent Weekly's Capsule History of Local Music - Circa 2003. Assembled for an edition of the paper's "Annual Manual" newscomers-guide type thing, this is handy for its distillation of the past 40 years into a few hundred words, plus its rundown of local clubs and radio stations, and its roundup of crucial local albums. It's not being maintained as a living document, so take any time-reliant factual info with a big grain of salt.

Carolina Soul - A few years ago, WXYC DJ Jason Perlmutter began a quest to track down as many North Carolina soul musicians as he could find, haunting thrift stores to find obscure regional soul 45s and then tracking down and knocking on the doors of any names he found on the labels of the records. This website is the extensive discography of regional soul labels and releases that Jason has compiled during his quest. Hopefully he'll follow it up with interviews and info about the musicians he's found (there's an article by Jason about his adventures in the Fall 2004 issue of the WXYC newsletter, In/Audible (6MB PDF)).

NC Punk Discography - Incomplete but useful guide to the earliest/most obscure of the NC punk vinyl, assembled by an Australian, no less.

Back in the '90s, 3.2.3 led a series of BBQuests around eastern NC--a big American car, some bourbon, and way too much pork. The chronicles of these adventures can be found here.

We also currently host/archive the original Shinola BBQ pages--and when I say "archive," I mean they haven't been touched in like 5 years, so don't blame me if they're a little out of date. Although really, any BBQ restaurant worth visiting was there long before Shinola, and will still be there long after we're all gone, so if you journey to one of them & they're gone, be thankful.

There used to be a certain amount of food-related traffic on, but nowadays I, and at least a couple other a.m.c-h'ers, have shifted to the South board. Every bit as nerdy about food as we are about music.

Do you eat lunch in RTP?
NC music blogs

NC Music History dot com - I would've put this in the "history" category, but I wanted to list it among the blogs to underscore the fact that Michael is updating it on a regular basis, from his apparently bottomless supply of obscure NC releases. Lots of Triad-based bands from the 80s are represented, as that's his primary stomping ground, but there are plenty of entries about classic Triangle bands as well. There are MP3s for every band featured. Crucial.

Mann's World - Karen Mann played guitar for the great Greensboro band Chew Toy back in the 90s, and (like me) did a stint writing about music for the Independent Weekly. For the past 3 years or so she's been posting show reviews and photos (and lately also video and a podcast) about bands & shows in and around Raleigh.

The Oak Room - Mark began this MP3 blog a couple of years ago because, as he said, "My hope is that this blog will be a sort of substitute for the concert-going that I would do if I had more time (and money)." He leans slightly towards alt-country/americana and pop, which makes his blog an excellent complement to Karen's slightly harder-rocking tastes, and my own fondness for unlistenable noise.

Must Be Starving - Music blog of local freelancer Robbie Mackey (surely there aren't two Robbie Mackeys in Chapel Hill, which means he also plays guitar for Cities). Lotta stuff about non-NC bands, but he occasionally snaps to & remembers to check in at home.

Scan - The music blog of the Independent Weekly. Grayson is about 85% of it, and thus depending on his level of manic-ness, it's either updated way-too-often or not-at-all, which you can't blame him for, considering he also has to come up with an assload of content for the actual newspaper as well. Still, check in here for the stuff that winds up getting cut from the paper, as well as little snarky updates about local goings-on.

On The Beat: David Menconi on music - David Menconi has been writing about music for the Raleigh News & Observer for the past 15+ years. He also contributes to No Depression magazine, and somehow manages to keep one foot planted in the world of mainstream music that his readers expect him to be able to explain, and the other in the world of local music, which he tries to help his readers discover, as often as he can get away with it.
politics - Todd Morman has been ranting about local media and politics for the better part of a decade, beginning with his long stint as co-host of WXYC's call-in talkshow Northern Hemisphere Live, & then moving on to his Raleigh cable-access TV show Monkeytime & his Media Column in the now-defunct Spectator weekly. He writes intermittently for the other weekly in town, The Independent, but they don't give him nearly enough play. That's OK, though, because his blog, gives him all the space he needs. - Founded 3 years ago by Chapel Hill hellraiser (and onetime ch-scene listowner) Ruby Sinreich, OrangePolitics quickly became *the* place to go if you wanna know what's going on in Orange County.

Raleigh Eco News - Sue Sturgis is a freelancer in Raleigh who did time at both the Independent Weekly and the News & Observer, so she knows her way around state government *and* the business end of a keyboard. Her focus nowadays is the environment & the destruction thereof, particularly here in the Old North State.

Exile on Jones Street - Independent Weekly columnist Kirk Ross writes a blog about NC politics to accompany his column of the same name. He also plays guitar & sings in one of the truly great Chapel Hill bands, Lud.

The Independent Weekly gave me an Indies Arts Award this year (2006, since lord knows I'm not going to remember to come back and touch up this paragraph after the new year). Thanks!