Music series to feature Jackson County’s own Keith Shuler

The 2017-18 First Thursday Old-Time and Bluegrass Series at Western Carolina University continues Thursday, Feb. 1, with a concert featuring the songs and stories of musician and singer Keith Shuler.

His performance at 7 p.m. in the ground-floor auditorium of H.F. Robinson Administration Building will be followed by an 8 p.m. jam session in which local musicians are invited to participate.

Keith Shuler

Shuler, who was raised in the shadow of the Plott Balsam Mountains in Jackson County’s Addie community, has been playing guitar and writing songs for about four decades in styles ranging from bluegrass and traditional mountain music to folk, blues and rock. He will be telling stories and singing songs about people, animals and places from his native Jackson County and from across Western North Carolina during his performance.

“Shuler holds a deep love of lyrical beauty and humorous stories that he twines together to create his unique stage presence,” said Peter Koch, educational associate at WCU’s Mountain Heritage Center, which sponsors the series. Sitting at the crossroads of traditional mountain music and blues-rock, Shuler is among artists often given the “Americana” label.

The First Thursday concerts and jam sessions will continue through spring, with programs from 7 to 9 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month.

The concerts and jam sessions are free and open to the public. Pickers and singers of all ages and experience levels are invited to take part in the jam sessions, which also are open to those who just want to listen.

For more information, call the Mountain Heritage Center at 828-227-7129.