Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the Traditional Artist Directory?
2. Who is included in the Traditional Artist Directory?
3. How can I be included in the Traditional Artist Directory?
4. Do I need to pay to use the Traditional Artist Directory?
5. How do I contact the artists listed in the Traditional Artist Directory?
6. What are the artists' fees?
7. To whom should I address comments or questions about the directory?

 

1. What is the Traditional Artist Directory?

The Blue Ridge National Heritage Area's Traditional Artist Directory is a guide to many of the finest traditional artists and musicians in the North Carolina mountains and foothills. The directory was created as a resource for educators and event planners, as a general educational resource for the public, and as a tool to help traditional artists and musicians earn income by sharing their artistry.

The Traditional Artist Directory was compiled by the North Carolina Folklife Institute, with grant support from the Appalachian Regional Commission, Blue Ridge National Heritage Area, The Conservation Fund, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the North Carolina Rural Center. A variety of organizations contributed expertise to the project including: Appalachian State University, the John C. Campbell Folk School, Mars Hill College, the Museum of the Cherokee Indian, the North Carolina Arts Council, Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual, and Western Carolina University.

 

2. Who is included in the Traditional Artist Directory?

The directory includes artists and artist groups who represent authentic traditions of the North Carolina mountains and foothills. Most of the included artists reside within the 25-county Blue Ridge National Heritage Area region and most are available for performances and demonstrations. The directory includes traditional singers and musicians, craftspeople, storytellers, dancers, and specialists in traditional foods and plant lore.

The directory was compiled for the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area by folklorists with the North Carolina Folklife Institute. The folklorists organized a series of public meetings around the region to help identify artists for inclusion. The folklorists then prepared and submitted nominations to a panel of reviewers drawn from variety of organizations around the region.

The criteria for inclusion in the directory were artistic excellence, authenticity, and significance within a particular tradition. Highest priority was given to traditional artists who:

  • are either native to the region or who have become residents of the region and have achieved a level of artistry that is accepted by other artists in the community as accomplished;
  • learned by oral tradition;
  • are recognized by their community as outstanding representatives of local and/or regional culture;
  • are practicing traditions handed down over generations.

While the directory is representative of the breadth and depth of traditional artistry in the North Carolina mountains and foothills, it makes no claim to be comprehensive. The number of artists nominated for inclusion was limited by time and resources.

 

3. How can I be included in the Traditional Artist Directory?

We hope to continue to expand the Traditional Artist Directory to include additional artists in the future, as funds and resources permit. If you are interested in being included, or know of a traditional artist who would be interested, please review the criteria for inclusion listed above and contact us. At this time we are gathering names for future nominations.

 

4. Do I need to pay to use the Traditional Artist Directory?

The information in this directory is provided free of charge. There is no charge to artists for inclusion in the directory.

 

5. How do I contact the artists listed in the Traditional Artist Directory?

The artist profile pages provide a variety of contact information for the artists-mailing addresses, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses. When contacting artists, we suggest that you reference their listing in the Traditional Artist Directory.

A handful of artists included in the directory do not have any contact information listed because they are no longer available for public presentations.

 

6. What are the artists' fees?

Artists listed in the directory typically charge for the services they provide, whether they be performances, demonstrations, workshops, tours, or private instruction.

Information on these fees is not provided in the directory. You will need to discuss fees directly with the artists.

 

7. To whom should I address comments or questions about the directory?

Please direct your comments, feedback, suggestions, questions, and updated directory information to:

Rob Bell
Director of Programs

Blue Ridge National Heritage Area
195 Hemphill Knob Road
Asheville, NC 28803
(828) 298-5330, ext. 308
rob@blueridgeheritage.com