Country

Charlie Edwards

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Lulu Belle and Scotty Wiseman

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Lulu Belle and Scotty Wiseman

Country musicians

Avery and Watauga Counties, NC

Husband-and-wife country stars Lulu Belle and Scotty Wiseman had prominent music careers that included years of performing, recording, and even appearances in movies. They became known as the Hayloft Sweethearts, and Lulu Belle was voted the most popular female on the radio in 1936. They were stars of the WLS National Barn Dance in Chicago for 20 years.

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Del Reeves

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Del Reeves

Historic Artist - Country musician

Alleghany County, NC

Franklin Delano "Del" Reeves was born in Sparta, the youngest of 11 children. He learned to play guitar borrowing one of his brother's instruments, and he was performing on radio by the time he was 12 years old. While serving in the Air Force, Reeves was stationed in Sacramento, where he performed on The Chester Smith Show. He moved to Nashville in 1961 to begin recording for Decca, and he had his first chart single the same year with "Be Quiet Mind."

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J.E. and Wade Mainer

String band musicians

Buncombe County, NC

Joseph Emmet (J. E.) and Wade Mainer, two of recorded country music's first stars, grew up in a log cabin on a farm near Weaverville. Their father was, according to Wade, "a good singer—real stout voice." J. E. and Wade were also influenced early on by their brother-in-law Roscoe Banks, a left-handed fiddler. The brothers often accompanied Banks and his brother Will when they would play square dances, J. E. fiddling with Roscoe, and Wade playing banjo.

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Callahan Brothers

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Chris Austin

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Callahan Brothers

Early country musicians

Madison County

Madison County has a well deserved reputation as a wellspring of musical talent, particularly as the home of accomplished singers of old ballads that trace back to the British Isles. The county has also produced artists who found success in the broader spectrum of country music. Among the earliest were the brother duet of Walter and Homer Callahan.

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Chris Austin

Country and bluegrass musician and songwriter

Watauga County

Songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Chris Austin might never have gotten the attention he deserved for his musical talents had he not sneaked backstage at the Grand Ole Opry one night to meet one of his heroes, Ricky Skaggs. Within a short period of time, Chris was working as a sideman in Skaggs' band, and he later worked with Reba McEntire as well.

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