Sylvana Joyce & The Moment
Gypsy Rock / Soul / The Blues / Prog. / All bundled into one fitful cry of passion.
Sylvana Joyce and her band, the Moment, were founded in the summer of 2010 when Sylvana put out a craigslist ad looking for musicians to bring life to her music. But don't let their status of ingenue fool you: Six months after the band's inception, they had already received recognition from the industry, with a full week feature by MTV and Ourstage as a "Needle in the Haystack" Artist. Sylvana's band has already graced the stage over 70 times, including festivals, showcases and live performances in NYC, New Jersey and Boston. They have also garnered a following through their musical features at The Inspired Word, a spoken word series which have featured a slew of industry talent including Golden Globe Award winners, Grammy nominated singers, American Idol finalists, and HBO Def Poetry stars. They've been nominated for "Best Band" and "Outstanding Music Video" at the 2010-2011 Hoboken Music Awards and are the WINNERS of the 2012 No Contracts Needed Battle of The Bands competition hosted by UnRegular Radio, a popular online indie station based in Boston, MA. Sylvana, a classically trained pianist and professional actress, leads a showstopping performance with her powerhouse voice and natural star quality. Sylvana Joyce and The Moment's music is the perfect mix of gypsy rock, blues and cabaret that has drawn comparisons to Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, Gogol Bordello and The Dresden Dolls. Sylvana Joyce performed her single, "The Break" on NBC for Jimmy Lloyd's Songwriter Showcase. Air Date TBD.
Funk / Hip Hop
Based in Tampa, FL, Green Sunshine was founded in 2008 and for nearly 3 years has awed crowds across the United States with a funky blend of home grown music for the masses. Molding the essence of Hip-hop, down and dirty Funk, mind bending Soul, and a Jam element like no other, Green Sunshine has quickly become a sought after band in Music Festivals across the nation. Their music radiates positive vibes, and is deeply funky and extremely fun-loving.
Conscious Hip Hop Electro Fusion
Lu·mi·nary: noun 1. a body or conduit that gives light 2. a person who is an inspiration to others
Formed in the heart of Venice Beach California, and immersed in one of the most culturally diverse communities in LA, arises the heart driven, and service orientated Hip Hop emissaries of peace, the Luminaries. From the underground parties in “Dogtown” to the biggest festival stages on the west coast, the Luminaries have now taken their message international and crowds everywhere sing along the anthem, “Peace Worldwide Starts From Inside!”
The band sees their role as more than just musicians, but as catalysts for change. Each member having played the role of teacher, social worker, and activist, from working with homeless youth to defending the nation’s largest urban community garden, The South Central Farm. Luminaries embody the power of service, and do so of course through their inspirational live performances that leave audiences rejuvenated from the soul, down to the cellular level.
Luminaries bring an amazing live show that’s reminiscent of the golden era of Hip Hop, fused with a soulful, electro, live band, funk filled experience! As expressed by one of the “Grandfathers” of the genre, and early founder of modern rap, Afrika Bambaataa reminded us the power of “Peace, Unity, Love, and having Fun!” In the same vein, Luminaries create a soundscape of Hip Hop mantras inviting audiences to participate in the connectivity of one another while going ecstatic on the dance floor!
Luminaries are no strangers to a large audience. Over the past couple years they have played around the festival circuit with such grand concert events as Harmony Festival, Lightning in a Bottle, Beloved Festival, and Earthdance, sharing the stage with some of the hottest acts of the moment, including Michael Franti, K ‘Naan, The Glitch Mob, Matisyahu and Trevor Hall, as well as time-tested vets like KRS-ONE, STS9 and even India Arie.
In 2011, Luminaries were invited as global ambassadors by Sister Cities International to participate in a 10-day tour through the Middle East promoting peace. The crew visited youth centers, college students, and political dignitaries sharing their cultural philosophies, while preforming concerts in Israel, and Palestine including the widely attended Taybeh Music Festival. In 2012, Luminaries again graced the International stage by performing at the Bali Spirit Festival in Ubud, Indonesia, as well at the Synthesis Festival in Chichen Itza Mexico commemorating the famed Winter Solstice. Luminaries continue to expand their horizons in the global performance market, as more opportunities arise.
William The Accountant
Rock / Alternative / World
Standing on the shoulders of those who came before them, William The Accountant is a band that uses funk, new wave and cultural polyrhythmic undertones to take what they believe to be the next step in music. Created in 2009 in Columbus, Ohio, the ensemble continues to establish themselves as a band that will not be content. This is highlighted by their music which is intentional, welcoming and confuses fans into movement, as they are known for their live performances that stretch beyond the five members on stage. Kevin Bednar, Zachary Tamplin, Andrew Hahn, Chris Murphy and Kevin Luce invite you to be a part of the movement. An honest name. An honest job. William The Accountant.
Afro Zen Ethio Funk
World Grooves from Lebanese trance music to Ethiopian Jazz and similarly flavored originals.
Rattlemouth is Richmond Virginia's Ethio Jazz and World Groove powerhouse. Featuring the saxophones of Danny Finney, the monster rhythm section of Robbie Kinter (drums) and Wayne O'Bryan (bass), the guitar of George M Lowe and the cello of Constance Sisk, they blaze through spirited renditions of classic tunes from Zimbabwe, South Africa, Mali, Cuba, Jamaica, Nigeria, Lebanon, Ethiopia etc., plus similarly flavored originals, inspiring audiences to equally spirited dancing. This current body of work, which comprises their live repertoire, is captured on their new cd, "5." Rattlemouth is honored to be featured on ‘Noise & Chill Out: Ethiopian Groove Worldwide’ - the latest international release in the EthioSonic series on the Buda Musique label. Curated by the world-renowned ‘Ethiopiques’ creator Francis Falceto, the 2-CD compilation showcasing 28 artists from 10 countries includes such luminaries as Kronos Quartet, Getatchew Mekurya & The Ex, Debo Band,and Either/Orchestra. Rattlemouth is one of only six groups selected from the US for inclusion on this prestigious collection. Having emerged from the ashes of the legendary Orthotonics in 1989, Rattlemouth is also known for it's extensive catalogue of art rock, as presented on their two releases on the renowned Cuneiform label in the late 90's and the 2006 self-released, Hopabout. This latter cd advances the shift in the direction of World grooves, as evidenced by several middle eastern inspired original compositions. In addition, Rattlemouth have frequently composed and performed music for dance and film projects, including music commissioned for Robert Battle, choreographer and new Artistic Director of the world renowned Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. This aspect of their work is documented on the 2009 release, Home Fed and Full Grown, music for dance and film.
Eclectic / Roots Rock / Space Folk
Option 22 is an Worldbeat ensemble with a revolutionary vibe. Dubbed by one listener a “new age jam band,” their broad style spans from newgrass to space-folk to roots-rock world funk and points in between. They are channels for the music, allowing it to flow through them and deliver it to whomever is present along with messages of hope, love and healing. On the fly collaborative dynamics, rhythmic muscle and thematic inventions shower you with sound that is sure to lift your vibration and unlock the doors of your heart, allowing you to groove freely and transcend. This is more than just a good time band.
Based in Princeton, West Virginia, Lori McKinney (vocals, drums, djembe, spoken word) and Robert Blankenship (guitar, banjo, shamisen, hand-drums, didgeridoo) have been writing and playing music together since early 2004, forging songs from the creative blast furnace of the divine flow. Now infusing the mix are the intense, driving bass lines of Brandon Dunn (bass) and the intuitive, free form guitar stylings of Jordan Furrow (lead guitar, percussion).
Their work as healing artists and arts organizers (they founded and run Culturefest World Music & Arts Festival and The RiffRaff Arts Collective) is fueled by a strong desire to build and contribute to community. Their music reflects that passion. With backgrounds in theatre, performance, yoga/meditation, and visual arts, the group comes together with an artistic mind-set and a vision for a better world.
Their latest release, "The Change," is now available. Their last album, "Choose The Music," was nominated by HomeGrown Music Network for 2010 Album of The Year. One of its tracks was featured on the CD Sampler of the March edition of Relix Magazine.
A Ghost Like Me
Rock / World / Electronica
A Ghost Like Me is an live electonica/instrumental space rock band from Asheville NC. The band weaves in elements of rock, funk, reggae, dub, Indian/Eastern melodies and live trance into something very new and unique.
"I am another you, you are another me. All is one and one is all". This is the philosophy they exist by. Self-described as "Theme Music For The Human Experience", AGLM strives to bring you within yourself to elevate your soul, expand your consciousness and push the boundaries of your auditory senses. With a swirling of influences including: Ozric Tentacles, Gong, The Mars Volta, Shpongle, Lotus, Tortoise, A Perfect Circle, Pink Floyd, Mogwai, early STS9, etc., AGLM has developed their own unique brand of other-worldly space rock.
Folk/ Americana / Newgrass
From Paducah, KY and formed in the spring of 2012 by lead songwriters Shannon Vetter and Alexander Coltharp. Gideon's Rifle soon added Kimberly McDaniel on mandolin and former Cascade Hollow band member Jake Siener on upright bass. Cellist Byron Farrar was recruited, as was Jake, from the University of Louisville's music performance program. Predominantly influenced by traditional American roots music and Kentucky bluegrass, Gideon's Rifle has a strong focus on vocal harmonies and arrangement/orchestration guided by the classical training of its members. The combination of self taught folk musicians and well versed classically trained musicians finds Gideon's Rifle irreverently sliding in and out of Americana, Folk, Country, Bluegrass, and full on classical orchestration. The spring of 2013 has Gideon's Rifle touring the Southeast with dates in May including but not limited too: Dunedin, St, Petersburg, DeLand, Jacksonville, Johnson City, Nashville, Lexington, Louisville, Cincinnatti, Owensboro, Paducah, Murray, and Carbondale, St. Louis, and Lebanon. Josh Coffey of Bawn in the Mash, Emily Caudill of Blunt Honey, Blair Joseph of the Bridge 19,and Ryan Cothron of Echo Gray, just to name a few, are all included in the rotating second lead instrumentalists you can find playing with Gideon's Rifle on any give date!
Americana / World
Singing and writing on the edge of herself lures Aimee Wilson and her listeners into the center of all that is real. She draws from diverse musical roots, from Sacred Harp to Persian and Middle Eastern rhythms and melodic lines, but each song is stamped with her unmistakably and utterly personal style. Songs often begin as petitions within the heart seeking to find consent inside the music itself. The music unfolds in a process that mimics that of nature: birthed from places of fragility and ascending to bursts of praise. The performers and listeners become extensions of that process.
Her new album Unto Us The Sun marks Aimee’s continuing development as an artist more confident in her own voice and the mystery at work through her music. In some songs, gentle and simple guitar lines envelope the listener, gradually taking on exquisite layers instrumentally and vocally, sometimes building to deeply emotional crescendos. Her creative use of shifting rhythms and varying moods embody the lyrical qualities of quiet mystery, painful probing, and exultant praise. And her voice, haunting gift in itself: tremulous and yet incredibly strong.
Songs have developed over eight years as she ventured forth and found herself met in her music. As Aimee worked in a safe haven for chronically homeless women she encountered courageous, strong, but broken spirits. The remarkable power inside these women deeply moved her. Her songs pulse with loss, exposure, and exile that purge and refine the purest parts of us. Her music seeks to uncover the glory enfleshed in our deepest need.
Alternative/Alt. Rock / Experimental / Ambient
The spiritual exploration of sound.
"Infinite Third is the ever-evolving music of Billy Mays III: Guitar-based looping with beats/beatbox that usually reaches beyond any genre, experimenting freely in ambient, electronic, drone textures and post-rock progression with an intention to inspire reflection (and often meditation) in the listener. Infinite Third's live set is an intense painting of the present moment, channeled intimately to create a unique experience for each setting and all involved. Since 2009, Infinite Third has released an abundance of independent recordings along with various other forms of media content to create a flowing channel of art and expression."
World / Electro-Acoustic
DragonSong is a collaborative world music ensemble performing a synthesis of contemporary and traditional music. With a shared love of stretching musical boundaries, this tribe of artists bands together to experiment freely with an open mind, challenge one another, and explore artistic diversity. Their organic nature and addiction to exotic percussion births a kaleidoscope of compositions with a unique, international flavor. Through the integration of both ethnic and progressive tools, members combine their talents to create an entity greater than themselves to share with the rest of the collective. They strive to enlighten and inspire each other, and others, by recycling energy and encouraging expression on a conscious and subconscious level. Vocal harmonies blend with a variety of instrumentation, weaving an intricate tapestry of sound. Through the fusion of music with visual performing arts, DragonSong creates a multi-sensory experience for all to enjoy.
The Company Stores
The Company Stores is a modern blues/folk band that smoothly blends elements of several genres of southern music. They pull inspiration from styles such as Delta blues, Appalachian folk, and slave spirituals, and then modernize them with rock and hip hop based rhythms. Vocalist Casey Litz's sultry and soulful voice captivates the audience, while the band lays down bluesy grooves between dynamic builds. The name "The Company Stores" is a throwback to the old coal mines of West Virginia. It refers to system set up by coal companies during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, where they paid the miners in "script" or "coal money" that was only good at the "company store". This form of indentured servitude kept miners and their families in bondage to the coal companies, and was a classic case of the rich and powerful exploiting the poor. This name not only shows the bands heritage, but also the gritty feel of their music and the meaning behind many of their songs about the struggles of the common man.
K.T. Vandyke & Driftin' Westward
K.T. Vandyke and the band play originals and are influenced by Old Crow Medicine Show, Ryan Adams, Train and many more. KT has a gifted voice and since his first outdoor festival, he is being asked to play everywhere with the band or solo/duo. This group offers a pleasant blend of Americana and folk from the coal fields of the Appalachian mountains to the music rich mountains and valleys of East Tennessee and Western North Carolina fused with deep in your face lyrical content delivered through precise harmony arrangements. K.T. Vandyke is the sole member of Driftin' Westward writing and arranging all the music.
The band is finding opportunities to play with some award winning players/producers such as David Castle.
Melissa McKinney is an accomplished vocalist who was based in the NC/SC region for several years and was a member of Charlotte Blues Society. Her career peaked with a performance at the famous Double Door Inn right before the West Virginia native returned home in fall 2008 to open her business, “Stages Music School,” a creative music performance school for children. Her business is now thriving and is part of a major arts movement which is revitalizing the downtown of Princeton. Melissa was featured alongside the late blues legend Nat Reese several times in the past few years at the Blue Ridge Music Center, Floydfest Music & Arts Festival and more. She was crowned “Princeton Idol” in a 6 week long singing showdown sponsored by J104 and also won the Blues Portion of WV Finest vocal competition. She lights up the stage with her powerful and soulful voice. Watch for Melissa running the magical area of the festival known as “LaLa Land” and watch for her students, the wildly popular all girl kid band, Miss Behavin'.
Spongecake and The Fluff Ramblers
Funk / Jam / Rock
If the 80's Grateful Dead and the 90's String Cheese Incident got together and had an illegitimate love child, that child would sound like SpongeCake & The Fluff Ramblers! 100 % All Natural Organic Jam! Providing Sustenance To The Head And Soul! No Artificial Sweeteners Or Preservatives! Guaranteed Always Fresh!
Calling the Carolinas home, Spongecake and the Fluff Ramblers is an improvisational band that dabbles around the edges of Rock/Folk/ Funk/ Jazz Fusion. They meld jams in and out of genres and styles, falling into the occassional improvised cover. No two shows are ever the same, no cover is ever played the same way twice. SCATFR also has an alter ego (sometimes referred to as Unkle Dad) playing either electric or unplugged bluegrass and olde timey classics and originals.
The Gin Mills
Blues / Rock
Founded in 2011, the Gin Mills is an original blues & rock trio that hails from the heart of West Virginia. Their sound is an ever changing representation of many ideas and styles. Are you a fan of hard rock? The Gin Mills have your back! Want some smooth blues? Got it! Feel like a folksy pick-me-up? Why not?
With plenty of original music to go around, the band consists of James Hart (guitar, lead vocals, etc.), Michael Testerman (bass guitar), and Shawn Wagner (drums and vocals). The Gin Mills are always ready to play, excited to gain new friends, and are ready to earn new fans! Add them to your playlists, see them live, and spread the word!
James Hart is one of the core teachers at Stages Music School in downtown Princeton, WV. Watch for his students on stage this weekend.
Tim & Maggie
Tim is primarily a composer, but he has always enjoyed playing stringed instruments. His first instrument was the piano at age 7, but it was at age 11 that the strings of the ukulele captured his heart. He hasn't stopped playing strings since. He was educated at the University of California at Santa Barbara, the Université de Bordeaux, and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (DMA, 1977). Although his studies focused on composition and upright bass, he always found the time to continue work with guitar, banjo, and various other stringed instruments. He became Professor of Music at Concord University in 1978, where he has been a prolific composer and teaches music theory, composition, classical guitar, and classic banjo. His compositions include works for symphony orchestra, string quartet, wind ensemble, piano, flute, guitar, banjo, and electronic instruments. Tim is a member of the American Banjo Fraternity, the College Music Society, and the Viol da Gamba Society of America.
Maggie is a flautist and a piano tuner. She spent her youth performing folk music, primarily Irish, on various wind instruments. She began her formal education at the University of South Florida, and completed her Bachelors degree in music education at Concord University in 1998 where she became interested in piano technology. During her college years, she focused on art music, primarily 20th century. As a music education major, she spent much time with string and wind instrument pedagogy, which gave her a broad perspective on instrumental performance. She taught in the WV public school system from 1999 to 2003, and has taught private lessons in winds and strings since 1990. She started tuning pianos professionally in 2002, and has worked intermittently as an adjunct for Concord University teaching woodwinds class, music for elementary school teachers, and music history for non-music majors. In 2010, she started her graduate studies at Radford University where she is currently a student. Maggie is a member of the American Banjo Fraternity, the Piano Technicians Guild, and the Music Educators National Conference.
They play folk music from early America / Appalachia, including tunes that came over from England, France, Ireland, and Scotland, as well as some of Tim's original compositions in that style.
Band leader and songwriter John Colby Elswick was born in Tazewell, VA and was raised in a musical family. He started playing violin when he was 4 and then drums and guitar around age 6, playing bluegrass in church. He was playing bass in worship services at 8 and soon went on to play in fairly large contemporary Christian rock band for about 6 years, The Travis Roberts Band, and played in a bluegrass band called TN Border Line with kids all under 18 which performed at the famous Bristol Rhythm n Roots festival. Currently he is the main vocalist for War Torn Angel. He studied upright bass performance at Southwest Virginia Community College but withdrew from school to pursue touring.
After Jack may be a "new band with an old soul", but they have already achieved a great deal since their debut in fall 2011. Mary Allison, Rachel Blankenship and Emily Rose Tucker met while working as professional actor/musicians. Inspired by bluegrass, rock, gospel, blues, folk, country and everything in between, this Virginia based lady trio joined forces to create a sound driven by tight harmonies, eclectic musicianship and a certain je ne sais quoi, leading to a fusion of genres that provides a fresh take on the multifaceted music of the mountains. After Jack already has a loyal local following and they have quickly been expanding their audience both regionally and nationally. They claimed first prize in the Hayloft Gang National Video Contest in November 2011. They also recently beat out a host of other songwriters to claim the champion title in the 2011 Songwriter's Competition at Rapunzel's Coffee and Books in Lovingston, VA.
DJ Oko Yono
Oko Yono is a electronic music producer/dj and visual artist from Raleigh North Carolina. Inspired by the pulse of the dance floor and the vibes of the crowd he produces music enjoyable both in a club or on a rainy day. You can follow Oko Yono online for music and visuals @ok_okoyono or at facebook.com/okoyono
Dance and Movement Theatre
Chally is a founding member of Trillium Performing Arts Collective in Lewisburg, WV. He is a performer, musician, prop and set master, mask maker, choreographer and supporter. He studied at the Dell’Arte School of Physical Theatre and has performed throughout Appalachia at many festivals, fairs, hospitals and schools. Chally combines his talents as a “Walkabout” on stilts with juggling clubs, fire, knives or anything handy, engaging children to participate in the show. He likes to create work that is both meaningful and entertaining and hopes to continue creating outrageous bits of movement theatre with whoever wants to go out on a limb with him.
Pipes and The Peace Hounds
Two standout students from Stages Music School, Kayla McKinney (bass, guitar, drums, vocals) and Ary'an Graham (guitar, bass, drums) join two of their teachers, Melissa McKinney (vocals, guitar) and James Hart (vocals, guitar) for a rocking set of covers and originals. Powerhouse vocals and serious spunk fuel this train.
An Evening with The RiffRaff
Variety / Creative / Rock / Folk / Funk / Fun
The RiffRaff Arts Collective is a colorful group of performing, visual, literary and healing artists who have come together for a special time period of creation in downtown Princeton. Since 2006, artists of all ages and backgrounds have been brought together in collaboration and fellowship within a creative zone that exceeds expectations in this small town in WV. Some say it reminds them of something you would expect to find in a big city, and artists who visit from big cities often say they wish they had a venue like ours where they live. Every Monday night, The Room Upstairs, a turn of the century ballroom-turned living room theater, lights up with music, poetry, dance, art and conversation. It is a highly creative and regular meeting that has been taking place for years at 865 Mercer Street. Many of the downtown neighbors listen from the street as the music spills out and it has become a legendary experience. On Thursday night of Culturefest, the stage will represent the best of An Evening With The RiffRaff. Poets Tiffany Freed, Jordan Furrow, Ashleigh Gill, Cori Edwards, Briddy Morris and Leza Greenwald will share their unique perspectives and RiffRaff resident musicians Cody Perkins, Option 22, Colby Elswick, Captain Lazerblast Band, Melissa McKinney, James Hart, Kayla McKinney, Mike Atwell, and more will light up the stage with some unforgettable jams.
For more about The RiffRaff, visit
Cody Perkins & Company
Indie Folk / Rock
Cody Perkins was born in Burlington, NC and moved to WV at age 11. He started playing guitar at age 15 and found music to be an outlet for feeling. If he has a strong emotion, he would sing about it. He started playing bass, drums and keys a couple of years later, and now, at age 21, he is a multi-instrumentalist and truly passionate musician. Capable of bringing an audience to tears, his raw emotion pours from this young man and listeners can just feel the deep soul he has. He formed a band called Jenny Don't Jump, and they recorded together for a while. He now records electronic music in his free time and continues to write. He is influenced by Pink Floyd, Radiohead, Sam Beam and The Fleet Foxes. At this event he will be backed by Option 22.
Liberty High School World Percussion Ensemble
The Liberty High School World Percussion Ensemble was established in 2007 by Jeremy Rodriguez, music teacher and a founding member of the West Virginia World Music Educators Cooperative. The group performs a large repertoire of music on percussion instruments that originate in Africa, Central America, and the Middle East. The ensemble’s primary purpose is to educate its audience about world music through its interactive shows. These interactive performances are facilitated by the students. The Liberty High School World Percussion Ensemble has performed throughout the state of West Virginia including the State Capitol in Charleston, West Virginia. The group has given world music clinics for Head Start programs, public school music programs of all ages, and Energy Express.
They will be giving a drum workshop Saturday morning at 10 a.m. at Culturefest.