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Music Heritage of Tellico Plains Tennessee
Tellico Plains Tennessee is located within a mountain region of rich musical heritage. Bluegrass and old-time music have their roots in the southern Appalachian Mountains. Many European settlers to this mountain region came from England, Ireland, and Scotland. They brought their old ballads, minstels, gospels (shape-note hymns), and Scots-Irish fiddle tunes with them. The isolation of the mountains kept these songs quite true to their traditional melodies. In fact, even today you can visit a British Isles pub and hear the same melodies as those played here. Lyrics for many melodies varied over time. For instance, the melody "Red Haired Boy" goes back to the ancient music of Ireland. Various lyrics have been written for this melody, including "Little Beggarman" (a fiddle tune known throughout the British Isles). "The Old Soldier with a Wooden Leg" is a US version of this melody from the American Civil War.

Mountain folk music, bluegrass, old time, and gospel are quite popular in the Tellico Plains region. Movies like "O Brother Where Art Thou" helped make bluegrass and old-time music popular once again.

You'll find music in the air in Tellico Plains. Listen while a group of musicians jams on a downtown street. Hear some pickin' around a campfire at Indian Boundary Campground. Local restaurants host music events. There are outdoor music events, and recurring "jam sessions" for local and visiting musicians. You don't need to play an instrument to join in... music lovers are welcome. So pack your fiddle, banjo, or other acoustic instrument when you plan a visit to Tellico Plains.

Old time mountain music, bluegrass, folk and gospel music
Local musician Jerry Van Asdale playing his mandolin
at an "Old Timers Day" outdoor church service
See our Events & Activities calendar for music venues in Tellico Plains.
Need to book a band? Musicians from the Tellico Plains Area
Bluegrass Jamming Class taught by Perry Brake - more info
"Old-time music" photos below are courtesy of Charles Hall Museum:
Fiddle picker Old time music photo
Banjo old time music photo
Wiley Queen plays his fiddle for local residents
Inside Wall-Carringer's store in November of 1941.
Frank (King) Debety with banjo and gun...
at a logging camp in Tellico mountains, about 1920.
Fiddle in store Old time music photo
Inside Wall-Carringer's store in November of 1941, Wiley Queen plays his fiddle for local residents. Pictured (left to right) are Unidentified, Oscar Wear, Cliff Rutherford, store owner Garfield Carringer, Sam Kidd, and Wiley Queen. Benton’s Meat Market was located behind the glass window in the back of the store with a side entrance on Scott Street. Town stores played a central role in the community as a provider of merchandise and a community place where citizens could assemble around the wood stove to exchange stories and listen to local musicians.
Banjo & fiddle at logging break
Situated in a logging camp in the Tellico mountains about 1921, loggers entertain each other with musical instruments and playing cards.
For more videos
Visit Tellico Plains Channel on YouTube
See our Events & Activities calendar for music venues in Tellico Plains.
Need to find a band? Musicians from the Tellico Plains Area

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