MOUNTAIN CITY, TN – – The Long Journey Home Tour and Festival, a celebration of the old-time mountain music style that helped shape country music, takes place over Labor Day weekend Aug. 29-Sept. 1 in Mountain City, a town located between the Cherokee National Forest and Watauga Lake. This year’s theme is “Legacies.”
The fun begins on Thursday with a kickoff dinner and square dance with authentic Old Time fiddling.
Buskin’ on Main Street brings the small town to life with music, friends, and good eating on Friday evening. An extended trailer for the newest Appalachian Memory Keepers Film, “Short Life of Trouble: The Legend of G.B. Grayson” and several student films will premiere at dusk. Grayson, whose short career produced “The Ballad of Tom Dooley,” “Train 45,” “Handsome Molly,” and about 40 other songs became the standards of bluegrass and country music.
The Musical Heritage Homecoming Tour begins Saturday at The Old Mill Music Park, where the Kody Norris show will perform more music from G.B. Grayson. The new mural, “Legacies,” which is the sixth mural in a series that honors the musical heritage of Johnson County, will be unveiled in downtown Mountain City. The mural was painted by participants in the mural workshop led by artist Cristy Dunn.
Guests are encouraged to bring a quilt or lawn chair to experience Clarence “Tom” Ashley’s signature clawhammer banjo style played on his front porch by Kenny Price, who learned from Tom. Saturday’s tour concludes at the Fred Price Homeplace, nestled high in the mountains. The Piney Woods Boys will perform selections from the album, “Old Time Music at Clarence Ashley’s, Doc Watson’s first album, now on the National Recording Registry,” followed by an open community jam. Long Journey Home closes with a traditional gospel Sunday Singin’ 2 p.m. Sunday at historic Heritage Hall in downtown Mountain City.
For more information, visit www.longjourneyhome.net.