Sunday, June 25, 2017 at 2:30 PM

At the Clyde Davis Memorial Stage

Hagan-Stone Park
5920 Hagan-Stone Park Road
Pleasant Garden NC 27313

Presenting our special guest:

Mason Via

Mason Via is a talented young musician/singer/songwriter out of Warren Wilson College in Swannanoa, NC, who is on his rise to stardom. Originally from Danbury, NC, Mason has been playing acoustic guitar since the age of 12. Mason grew up going to fiddlers conventions and festivals, being taught by his father, notable bluegrass musician David Via. Also being taught by accomplished musicians Rex McGee, Ryan Cavanaugh, and Clay Jones. In May of 2015 Mason released his first studio album, “Up, Up, Up”, which contains 11 original compositions. Mason recorded this CD at the studio of one of Ben Fold’s past touring guitarists, Britt Uzzell. Mason’s lyrics are considered by many to be the driving force behind his band’s music, and his vocals back up the deep emotion that his lyrics possess. You can find Mason touring solo, with his father (David Via), with the Mason Via Band (Funk/Americana), or with his bluegrass side projects (WWC BG Band, Hot Trail Mix, Mason Via & Joe Troop) Mason has placed in contests and picked up ribbons for vocals, guitar, or mandolin from conventions like: Mt Airy Fiddlers Convention, Elk Creek Fiddlers Convention, Fries Fiddlers Convention, Union Grove Fiddlers Convention, Shakori Hills, Loudoun Bluegrass festival, etc. The talented young man has been featured on several college radio shows across NC, featured on UNC-TV, and has been featured on Life in the Carolinas. Notable past venues include: Floydfest, Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival, Richmond Folk Festival, Roosterwalk, Watermelon Park Fest, etc…The Mason Via Band have shared lineups with bands such as Loretta Lynn, David Grisman, Sam Bush, Yonder Mountain String Band, Nahko & The Medicine for the People, Pokey Lafarge, Tim Obrien & Darrell Scott, The Wood Brothers, etc.


Saturday,  May 13, 2017 – 10AM – 6PM

Hagan-Stone Park
5920 Hagan-Stone Park Road
Pleasant Garden NC 27313
High Lonesome Strings Bluegrass Association presents the 20th Annual Pickin’ in the Park Bluegrass Music Festival at the Clyde Davis Memorial Stage in Hagan-Stone Park. There is no charge to attend and the public is invited to bring a chair or picnic blanket and come share with us a day of music. Please visit the Picking in the Park page for more details. This year’s headliner is the nationally known bluegrass group, Sideline:

Steve Dilling plays like he was born and raised in a crib where only Earl Scruggs and Tony Rice played on the twirling mobile above him. In love with the banjo at 10, playing by 12, starting The Bass Mountain Boys, then on to the Lonesome River Band, Steve’s career has had a solid, steady trajectory of success and respect. Of course we have to talk about his 20 plus years with Russell Moore and IIIrd Tyme Out. You know that Steve Dilling’s Carolina-awesome banjo playing and hilarious emcee work is one of the main reasons you always go see them when they’re in town. IIIrd Tyme Out has certainly brought his talent to the forefront of the bluegrass community. But his work with Sideline allows Steve to show audiences that he’s the real deal in any setting.

Jason Moore is a long time veteran of the Bluegrass and Americana scene. He first started working in bluegrass with the legendary James King in 1993 and was there through 1999. While there he was on the award winning “Bed By The Window” project and several other King projects. Also during this time he was asked to be on two Michael Cleveland projects along with Mountain Heart. Jason was with the MH group until July of 2014. While in the group, they went from top notch Bluegrass band to Americana band, all the while, recording six band projects and numerous other projects as a session player. Jason was asked to help on such projects as “A Tribute to the King of Bluegrass, Jimmy Martin”, Tim Staffords “Endless Line” and several others. As a result of the work he has done in different bands and projects, Jason has been on three Grammy Nominated projects and been nominated for “Bass Player of the Year” at the International Bluegrass Music Awards four times to go with winning “Recorded Event of the Year” twice and “Gospel Event of the Year”. Jason’s latest ventures include starting the Bluegrass band “Sideline” and working with other nationally touring Bluegrass bands as well as studio session work and production. To date, Jason has been on close to 100 different projects and has produced two others with more in planning every imaginable kind of bluegrass. His timing and groove are unequaled. You’ll mostly want to tell him how amazing he is.

Skip Cherryholmes started playing mandolin at age 9, but later switched to guitar when his family formed the “Cherryholmes” family band. Skip played with his family for almost 13 years until they decided to disband in 2011. In their time together, the Cherryholmes family won the 2005 IBMA Entertainer of the Year award, and have been nominated for numerous awards including 5 Grammy awards. He also played with bluegrass legend Lou Reid and his group “Lou Reid and Carolina”. Skip is now playing full time with Sideline and working as an engineer and producer at “Old Stage Recording Studio” in Raleigh, NC. Although he now lives in NC, Skip is from Los Angeles, CA and loves to visit his family and friends on the west coast. He enjoys spending his free time with his wife, Stephanie and his 2 Siberian Huskies, Kodi and Neko.

17 year old Nathan Aldridge has had a fiddle in his hand since he was two years old. His first real fiddle was given to him by his cousin at the age of four and he hasn’t put it down since! For several years he has been playing onstage with his dad, Mike “Precious” Aldridge from Al Batten & Bluegrass Reunion. Nathan has taken a few lessons from the great Dewey Brown, but for the most part he has taught himself how to play. His influences on fiddle go from great classics like Chubby Wise and Benny Martin, to more modern icons like Stuart Duncan and Mike Hartgrove. Although the fiddle is his instrument of choice, he is well rounded in guitar, banjo, and mandolin.

Born and raised in eastern N.C., Brad Hudson was blessed with the God-given talent of singing and playing music at the early age of three. He began singing and playing guitar in church. Eventually he started experimenting with the banjo and dobro, and started playing with several different bands across the state. Brad eventually went on to work with people like The Larkins, Don Cox, The Gaithers, Jeff & Sheri Easter, and the great Dolly Parton. He was also a huge part of shows like The Crystal Coast Jamboree and Country Tonite. Brad joined touring group Lorraine Jordan and Carolina Road, where he was able to land nominations for several awards including Dobro Player of the Year and Bass Player of the Year, and got to work with some of Country Music’s greatest names in the collaboration project “Country Grass”. After knowing all of the guys in Sideline for several years, he joined the band in the summer of 2016, and has brought so much to their sound and show. Brad now resides in Seymour, TN with his wife, Crystal, and children, Riley, Jordan, Caden, and Wesley.

Music has always surrounded Troy Boone. At a very young age, he decided to learn how to play banjo. After a few lessons, he stopped due to a lack of interest; however, his interest in music was still strong. Upon getting a Martin guitar for Christmas, Troy began learning guitar from his father. After learning the basics, he was desperate to obtain a higher knowledge of music and guitar playing. He began taking private guitar lessons from David Yates, a professional instructor out of Johnson City, Tennessee. After learning several tunes, he really began developing a deep love for bluegrass music. Each week David would teach him a new flat-picking tune. Years later, he found a mandolin which belonged to his older brother and began learning to play. Troy started to develop a strong passion for mandolin at this point, and upon graduating high school he decided to enroll in East Tennessee State University’s Bluegrass program. There Troy studied guitar, mandolin, banjo, along with taking several bluegrass education classes. Troy has been playing with his hometown band “Dreamcatcher” for the last 2 years.

Sunday, April 23, 2017 @ 2:30 PM

Ragsdale Civic Center at Jamestown Town Hall
301 East Main Street
Jamestown, NC
(behind Town Hall and beside Fire Station)

Shortly Therafter

Shortly Thereafter is a bluegrass band out of Southern Guilford County with members Pat Short, Gerald Crouse, Jim Boren, Steve Wood, Nikki Short, & Maggie Short. Pat and Jim have been playing music off and on since they were 20 years old. After they each began passing their musical interests on to their children and the Short girls took a few lessons, the Saturday night jams started at the Short family’s home. These jams include friends and neighbors, and of course Pat’s brother-in-law Gerald Crouse. Shortly thereafter, Pat and daughters Nikki and Maggie, their uncle Gerald, and Pat’s lifelong friend Jim started playing in churches, at bluegrass festivals, fundraisers, and wherever anyone would listen. Their popularity demanded they have a band name, so in 2015 Uncle Gerald’s suggestion “Shortly Thereafter” was chosen. In 2016, Shortly Thereafter gained its newest member, Steve Wood another lifelong musician and friend of Pat and Jim. As the girls have gotten older and been busy with college, the band isn’t able to get together as much as they would like to, but they are thankful for every opportunity to enjoy and share the talents God has given them. They even convince the youngest Short sister, Sara, to join in on the drums occasionally as well.

Guitarist and lead/ harmony vocalist Pat Short has had a love for music his entire life, and grew up listening to country, bluegrass, gospel, and rock n’ roll. At 19 years old, he was an original member of the bluegrass band “Sweetwater.” In 1978 he, Jim Boren, Steve Wood and two other friends started the bluegrass group “Tracker.” After that, Pat and Steve started the country/rock band “Straight from the Heart” that played around NC for 14 years. Pat rejoined Jim Boren, Steve Wood, and Tony Rook in the bluegrass band “Rook and Wood.” After starting a family, Pat took time off to teach his girls to play. His family then started playing together in their church’s praise band at Rehobeth UMC. Shortly thereafter, this family bluegrass band was started. Pat is known in the band for guitar, bass, drums, vocals, and his cowboy hat.

Jim Boren, being raised in a musical family, grew up listening to his dad play guitar and sing, and his mom join in on bass fiddle sometimes. Jim started playing guitar around the age of 12 and, with influence from the music of the sixties, he started a band while in the eighth grade. Later Jim was drawn to the sound of bluegrass music and took up the dobro guitar. Joining up with Pat Short, Steve Wood, and company, they formed the band “Tracker.” Jim has performed with “Southeast Express” Bluegrass Band for 20 years and is a worship leader at his church. Shortly thereafter, he joined the Short family’s band. Jim is always giving God the glory for His unfailing love. He is known in the band for guitar, dobro, lap steel, harmonica, vocals, and humor.

Gerald Crouse got his first banjo from his grandma when he was 15 years old. He took a couple lessons from his friend, “Sweetwater” banjo player Charlie Wood, but like most teenagers lost interest. It wasn’t until about 25 years later when his wife threatened to sell his untouched banjo that he began picking again. Shortly thereafter, he started playing with the gospel group “Grace and Glory.” Six banjos and three guitars later, Gerald enjoys playing bluegrass and gospel music with friends and family. He is known in the band for banjo, guitar, and selfies. (Remember: “what happens with Gerald, stays with Gerald.”)

Nikki Short, Pat’s oldest, grew up under his musical influence and has loved bluegrass, gospel, country, and rock n’ roll right from the start. She started taking fiddle lessons at the age of 8, including a couple from “Uncle” Bobby Hicks. Shortly thereafter, Pat bought Nikki’s favorite fiddle from Bobby and began teaching her how to play the guitar as well. Nikki was a member of the Christian band “Road Less Traveled” in high school and the Raleigh Wesley Foundation Praise Band in college. She currently also plays in the New Life Worship praise band. She has also been a part of Rehobeth UMC’s youth praise band “God’s Allies” since 2006. She is known in the band for fiddle, guitar, vocals, and providing structure.

Maggie Short, Pat’s middle daughter, has memories from a young age of listening to her father play music and going to bluegrass festivals with her Aunt Buffi and Uncle Gerald. Maggie began piano lessons at the age of 5 and learned to play guitar from Pat in the 5th grade. Shortly thereafter, Pat also began teaching her to play electric bass. Due to her love of bluegrass, she also eventually talked Pat into getting her an upright bass. Maggie was a member of the Christian bands “Road Less Traveled” and the Raleigh Wesley Foundation Praise Band. She also currently plays in the New Life Worship and “God’s Allies” praise bands with her sister Nikki. Maggie is known in the band for bass, guitar, vocals, and (in her words) awesomeness.

Sunday, March 26, 2017 @ 2:30 PM

Oakdale Campus Fellowship Hall
A Satellite Campus of Jamestown United Church
534 Oakdale Road
Jamestown, NC


Gaining Ground

Gaining Ground has been taking the Fiddlers Conventions by
storm in the last year winning many band and individual trophies and
ribbons with their wonderful harmony singing and playing. The band
recorded two music CD’s in the past year, a Bluegrass one as well as a
Gospel one, with some of the songs that John Powell had written and
composed. Bill Ellis with Freedom Records was a great help getting them
recorded and published. They look forward to the coming 2017 year .
They’ve played some great shows in the 2016 year such as at the High
Lonesome Strings stage at IBMA in Raleigh, Mt Gilead Music Barn, CJ’s
BBQ, Prissy Polly’s BBQ, to name a few .

Ted Nixon is the accomplished Banjo picker of the Band. His
Earl Scruggs style adds just the right flavor to their music and his back up
music is spot on. Ted is from Jonesville and has played in the band close
to three years.

Wendell Wiles is the mandolin player as well as fiddle player.
He is great lead singer as well as tenor and baritone singer. Wendell adds
wit to the group he keeping them in laugh mode a lot with his antics.
Wendell lives in Elkin, NC. He also played professionally with Blue
Denim. Wendell joined the band in February 2016. He is a great addition
to Gaining Ground.

John Powell is the guitar player in the band. He writes songs
and sings lead as well as bass and baritone. John has won many awards as
guitar player as well as dobro player. He really enjoys singing and
playing ever since he started playing at age 11. His Dad played as well as
his family. John is from Mocksville NC.

Lynne Powell is the bass player and lead singer as well as alto
and tenor singer. Lynne is from Mocksville as well and is married to John
Powell. They have been playing and singing together for about 30 years.
Even before they married, they sang together. About twelve years later,
John taught Lynne to play the upright bass and the music took off.


High Lonesome Strings is proud to be announcing new Pickin’ in the Park Youth Scholarships which will be awarded annually to motivated students who are involved in traditional acoustic bluegrass music, who have demonstrated musical ability or an aptitude for music and who demonstrate a need for financial assistance for study.

The annual scholarship program has been made possible, in large part, through the generous donations to a HLS Educational Fund. We thank the many individuals, families and organizations who have donated to HLS over the years to help keep the club going and start this scholarship.

Individual applicants will be selected to receive scholarships up to $500 which may be applied to individual lessons or a traditional acoustic bluegrass camp/program of the applicant’s choice. Scholarship winners can select from camps and classes in all levels of acoustic bass, banjo, dobro, fiddle, guitar, or mandolin. All applicants must be residents of the North Carolina counties of Guilford, Randolph, Chatham, Alamance, Rockingham, Forsyth, Stokes or Davidson.

This is an exciting outreach opportunity for supporting our youth bluegrass musicians. Spread the word!

Sunday, February 26, 2017 – 2:30 PM

Stonefield Cellars Winery
8220 NC Hwy 68 N
Stokesdale NC

The Rorrer Family

The Rorrer Family Band with members Doug, Taylor and Courtney perform a hybrid of bluegrass and old-time music. For this group, a plethora of musical influences and experiences come together to create a sound like no other.
Doug Rorrer grew up in Eden, North Carolina listening to his great-uncles Charlie Poole and Posey Rorer on old 78s on his father’s old Victrola. He cut his musical teeth on Poole’s music. His guitar “heroes” were Roy Harvey of Poole’s band, Riley Puckett of the Skillet Lickers, and a local guitarist, Gene Meade, who played in the Puckett style. Doug cites Doc Watson as one of his present day inspirations. Over the years, Doug has been fortunate enough to learn from and play with the likes of Norman Woodlieff, Lonnie Austin, and Buck and Alice Easley. Austin and Woodlieff played fiddle and guitar respectively with Poole’s North Carolina Ramblers.

Doug has taught guitar workshops and performed at the Augusta Heritage Festival in Elkins, WV; the Blue Ridge Folklife Festival in Ferrum, VA; MerleFest in Wilkesboro, NC; the Festival of American Fiddle Tunes in Port Townsend, WA; the Alaska Folk Festival in Juneau, AK; the Minnesota Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Festival; and the University of Chicago Folk Festival, among others. Doug and Taylor performed on a tour of England and Scotland in July of 2001 and also June of 2003. They also performed at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington, D.C. June 25-29 of 2003. They were also featured (as a part of the Hungry Hash House Ramblers) at the 2004 Celtic Connections Festival at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow, Scotland, where they performed with Archie Fisher and Martin Stephenson.

Along with his late wife, Kathy, he started Flyin’ Cloud Records and recording studio, which specializes in old-time, bluegrass, and other traditional acoustic music. He still keeps the label/studio in operation.

Doug’s son, Taylor Rorrer is keeping the family’s musical tradition alive. Taylor has become an accomplished musician in his own right. He draws his influences from Poole’s music and also contemporary musicians such as Norman Blake, Tony Rice, and Doc Watson, among others. Taylor has also become an accomplished at fiddle, old-time Poole style banjo, and numerous other instruments. He is a 4th generation musician in the Rorrer family and is the only Rorrer to take up the fiddle. Taylor played with and learned from fiddler, Lonnie Austin who was a member of Poole’s North Carolina Ramblers. He has released the CD, Playing Poole, which pays homage to Charlie Poole.

Courtney Rorrer is a singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. Originally from Stoneville, NC, she now makes her home in Madison, NC with her husband Taylor and son Ben. She is actively involved in the local music scene. Courtney plays fiddle and sings with the bluegrass group Alan Bibey and Grasstowne. Rorrer began to delve into music by singing and playing at local churches with her family’s gospel group “The Burroughs Family”. Entering local fiddler’s conventions eventually led her to front the bluegrass group, Broken Wire. After releasing one album with Broken Wire, Rorrer went on to sing harmony and play fiddle for five time IBMA Female Vocalist of the Year, Dale Ann Bradley and was able to add two Grand Ole Opry performances and a Daughter’s of Bluegrass recording to her belt. Rorrer has performed on many stages and won 2nd place in the Chris Austin Songwriting Competition at Merlefest in 2016. Currently, she performs with Alan Bibey and Grasstowne throughout the year as well as solo shows with her husband Taylor Rorrer and at many churches with her husband and her sister, Amy Wilson.

Sunday, January 22, 2017 2:30 PM

Oakdale Campus Fellowship Hall
A satellite campus of Jamestown United Church
534 Oakdale Road
Jamestown, NC
Bring instrument for jam sessions


Southern Magnolia


Originally an all-female bluegrass band, Southern Magnolia marked its serendipitous beginnings in the spring of 1995 under the name of Steel Magnolia. Three of the founding members (Judy Arnette: guitar, lead vocal; Linda Thore: guitar, lead and harmony vocals; Cindy Tucker :banjo, harmony and lead vocals) met at a local haunt for bluegrass musicians known as Brown’s Ole Opry located in McLeansville, North Carolina. It was just a few short weeks later that the group gelled into its first configuration with Pammy Davis, also a founding member, on bass. When Pammy learned to play dobro and switched to lead on that instrument, Louise Wilson joined the band on the upright bass. Upon Louise’s departure in 2003, Keith Carroll expertly filled the vacancy. After twelve years together, the band recorded its first musical project titled “Something Blue”. Four of the songs were penned by two of the band members, Judy and Cindy. In 2011, the second CD was recorded titled “Down Home with Southern Magnolia” with five more originals from Judy, Cindy, and Pammy. Susan Owen (mandolin, lead vocals and harmony), a member of the group for several years, is featured on both recordings. The band presently consists of the following members:

Judy Arnette: Guitar, Lead Vocals – Although Judy has been singing since her early youth, she began playing guitar only in the late 70s. At that time, under the influence of her guitar teacher and friend, she began singing some of the traditional Stanley Brothers’ tunes. Judy became known among local jam sessions as the “Carter Half” of the Stanley Sisters’ duo. In addition to singing and playing, Judy enjoys trying her hand at song writing. The band features her original tunes: “Something Blue”, “Leave Me Free”, “Just for Tonight”, “You Can’t Go Home Again” and “Heart of my Heart”, a song written about her husband’s heart transplant. Something Blue”, is on the 1st CD and the latter two songs appear on the 2nd CD. Since her retirement from a 40-year teaching career, Judy has been sharing her music as a volunteer with the Adult Center for Enrichment, Adams Farm Living, Friends Homes and other senior facilities in the Greensboro area. Judy is a native of Greensboro, North Carolina.

Linda Thore: Guitar, Lead and Harmony Vocals – Linda (from Reidsville, North Carolina) has been singing and playing most of her life. Growing up in a musical family (her father who played fiddle and two brothers who played various instruments), she was influenced by the traditional/bluegrass/country sounds of such artists as Flatt and Scruggs, Reno and Smiley, the Louvin Brothers, the Carter Family, Bill Clifton, Merle Haggard and Don Williams. When you are in a jam session with Linda, you just never know what you might hear. Linda was a founding member of the original band, then known as Steel Magnolia. In addition to bringing strong lead and harmony vocals to the group, Linda also injects her unique guitar picking style into several tunes. Upon her retirement, Linda formed the band, Linda and Company, which is featured on the first Friday of each month at Brown’s Ole Opry in McLeansville. The group plays other local venues and private parties as well.

Pammy Davis Lassiter: Dobro, Harmony Vocals: Pammy has been playing dobro since June 1997. Prior to the dobro, she played bass with Southern Magnolia until Louise Wilson joined the band on bass in September 1997. Pammy has performed in several small bands throughout the years competing in fiddlers’ conventions and entertaining at parties. In addition to playing dobro, she also adds her baritone harmony to several tunes. Pammy is a charter member of the Charlotte Folk Music Society and along with Judy and Cindy, founded the bluegrass association in the area called High Lonesome Strings of which she was president for the first ten years. She chairs an event known as ResoGat which is a gathering of players, collectors, builders and craftspeople who meet in Wilkesboro NC once a year to jam, entertain, and celebrate the dobro guitar. Pammy placed first in the dobro competition in the 2014 Old Fiddlers Convention in Galax Virginia. She is the first woman to win the award in this prestigious competition’s history. The very first song which she co-wrote with Cindy appears on the latest CD and is titled “Chimney Rock Slide”. Pammy resides in West End, North Carolina.

Cindy Tucker: Banjo, Harmony Vocals – Cindy was inspired by her father’s love for the music and for the banjo in particular. Due to this inspiration, she began to play banjo in the late 80s. The artistically crafted instrument that she plays on stage was made by her father, A.V. Murray. In addition to her exceptional contributions on the banjo and vocal harmonies, Cindy also is a songwriter and penned the instrumental “Fox in the Hen House” and, along with Pammy, composed the instrumental “Chimney Rock Slide”. Her vocal number, “Will You Love Me Anyway”, written about her brother-in-law’s care for his wife, is recorded on the band’s first CD. Her vocal number “There’s An Empty Place” along with “Chimney Rock Slide” appear on the latest CD, Down Home with Southern Magnolia. Cindy is from Altamahaw, North Carolina.

Keith Carroll: Bass – Keith Carroll is a most sought after bass player from Ruffin, North Carolina. He is a multi-instrumentalist playing banjo, fiddle, mandolin, and guitar. He is currently involved in learning how to play dobro. In addition to the standard bluegrass instruments, Keith plays saxophone, harmonica, hammered dulcimer, autoharp, bowed psaltery, ukulele, banjimer, lap dulcimer, didgeridoo and can even play an old piano recital piece if he can find the music. When encouraged, Keith will even render a tune or two on lead vocal. Keith has been with Southern Magnolia since November, 2003 when Louise Wilson left the band.