The Orange Peel



Weekend Special Occasion

Highlights Two nights accommodations Dinner certificate to one of…
October 24, 2014

More recipes and tales from Food Blog ForumMimosa Fried Chicken Biscuits by ... more

October 20, 2014

Morning Show Features Local Brews & BrewersOver the weekend, a TODAY ... more

October 14, 2014

Biltmore displays Dowager Countess outfitA costume worn by actress Dame ... more

October 07, 2014

New Tasting Menu + TV PreviewFelix Meana & Katie Button of Nightbell. ... more

Asheville Music Scene

From Bluegrass to Newgrass to Nograss

A progressive and collaborative arts community, Asheville's modern music scene melds old and new with surprising ease. Music permeates the city from the street musicians who serenade you downtown, to multi-generation bluegrass jam sessions, to a rock club (Orange Peel Social Aid and Pleasure Club) named one of the best in the country by Rolling Stone.

Today, Asheville's music scene is all encompassing. Traditional mountain music still rings out from national artists such as David Holt and Laura Boosinger who live in the area. Classical music from the Asheville Symphony Orchestra fills the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium throughout the year.

These Hills are Alive with the Sound of Appalachian Music

The instruments needed for distinct mountain sound have old world origins. The banjo hails from Africa and the fiddle has European roots. However, the only native instrument to the mountain region, is the Appalachian dulcimer. This instrument is considered to be one of the easiest to learn due to its small string count and simplified fret system. Want to find one for yourself? Visit the Grove Arcade in downtown Asheville where the Woodrow stringed instruments are sold. If you travel to Black Mountain visit Song of the Wood to see a wide collection of mountain dulcimers for sale.

Roots & Trails: New Guidebook!

Blue Ridge Music Trails of North Carolina

Mountain music traditions are alive and well in the Blue Ridge and a new travel guidebook, Blue Ridge Music Trails of North Carolina, offers an epic tour to the public settings where folk music and dance still thrive. Mountain musicians are as laid-back and welcoming as they come, so when heading out to find some Asheville music, bring your dancing shoes and banjo and play on in…

Musical Road Tripping

A CD Guidebook for the Ears

Listen while you explore. Many of the region's historic musicians are featured on a 20-track companion CD for the newly released Blue Ridge Music Trails of North Carolina. Imagine driving along the famed Blue Ridge Parkway with sweeping mountain views—nothing could be more fitting than a soundtrack of authentic Asheville music with that distinct Appalachian flavor.

Songs from this “guidebook for the ears” include “Swannanoa Tunnel,” “Frankie Silver's Confession,” and “Tom Dooley” and are based on actual events that took place in the region. The rich storybook of folk songs features raw, field recordings made in musicians' homes as well as professionally recorded tracks.

Top 8 Toe-Tappin' Adventures in Asheville

  1. Shindig Under the Stars - Bring your lawn chair (and an instrument, if you play one) for a free evening of traditional Southern Appalachian music, jam sessions and folk dancing at Shindig on the Green, Saturday nights under the stars from June through August in Pack Square Park. This is one of the most popular Asheville festivals of the year.
  2. Pick 'n Pie – Learn the secrets of mountain kitchens and mountain music in the same evening! Native Ground Music and Log Cabin Cooking partner to share their deep knowledge of Appalachian arts in beginners' classes in a charming farmhouse setting.
  3. Old Time Jam Session – Appalachian and Celtic music legacies are honored at the informal weekly jam sessions at Jack of the Wood. Rub elbows, and instruments, with Asheville bands and the locals while you enjoy a fresh, hand-crafted pint from Green Man and some time-traveling acoustic tunes.
  4. The Nation's Longest Running Folk Festival – Since 1928, mountain fiddlers, banjo pickers, dulcimer sweepers, dancers, balladeers and others have come to enjoy themselves "along about sundown" the first weekend in August at the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival.
  5. Bluegrass Buskers – Nowhere is the music culture and bluegrass influence more accessible than on the streets of Asheville. When the weather is nice, nearly every downtown corner offers a spontaneous stage. Head to Pack Square or the iconic Flat Iron statue along the Urban Trail for bands like 13 Strings and a Two Dollar Bill, Flat Creek Trio and The Leather Britches.
  6. Asheville Music Hall Haunts – From intimate listening rooms to large music halls ideal for dancing, Asheville area music venues run the gamut: Grey Eagle, White Horse Black Mountain, Isis Music Hall and The Orange Peel offer variety in their line-ups, but bluegrass and roots can always be found if you watch the schedules. Tip: Asheville's breweries are also musically inclined. Pisgah, Highland, Wedge and French Broad Brewing all offer live music with craft beer cool.
  7. Asheville Drum Circle
  8. Contra and Square Dance – Pack a skirt that twirls! European and American folk dance is seeing a revival, and nowhere is that more clear than in the mountains of Western NC. At Grey Eagle, Warren Wilson or White Horse Black Mountain, the locals will take you in their arms, quite literally, and show you the steps.
  9. Asheville Drum Circle – You might hear a fiddle or banjo thrown in the mix, but the instrument of choice for this 10+ year Asheville music tradition is the drum. Follow the pounding rhythm downtown to a dance party under the stars. You can't help but move your feet.

A Thriving Music Scene

Miike Snow and Petter Winnberg on stage at Moogfest 2012

The sounds of the modern era also thrive in Asheville. Bob Moog, the inventor of the Moog synthesizer and pioneer of electronic music, spent his final years in Asheville and set up a company here that continues his musical vision.

Alternative rockers The Smashing Pumpkins made Asheville their temporary home with a nine-show residency in 2007 at the Orange Peel. And well-known artists such as Gladys Knight, Warren Haynes and David Wilcox have made Asheville their newfound home and drawn inspiration from the area.


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Upcoming Events

Alex Krug Combo

Treat yourself to: Folk/Americana The Alex Krug Combo has recently gained momentum, throwing a 2013 CD Release Party at Highland Brewery for their new album “Divers” as well as opening for such acts as Donna the Buffalo and Erin McKeown. Alex moved to Asheville a few years ago from rural Maryland, where she grew up as a sixth generation blacksmith. This unique upbringing as well as time spent in the forest, rivers, hilly farmlands, and state park nearby undoubtedly helped cultivate a...

Celtober at White Horse, Black Mountain

An evening with three of today's premier performers of Celtic Tribal / Rock / Pop / Fusion / Traditional Music

Live at Native: Jay Brown!

"The secret is out, Jay Brown is the most authentic songster to come out of the Carolina High Country since a man named Doc Watson." -Ketch Secor of Old Crow Medicine Show Music starts at 7:30 p.m. with NO COVER!

Pan Harmonia Presents the Opal String Quartet

  • October 24, 2014
  • Location: St. Mary's Episcopal Church
  • Address: 337 Charlotte Street, Asheville, NC 28804

Pan Harmonia presents the Opal String Quartet Friday, October 24 at 7:30 PM in the intimate St. Mary’s Episcopal Church at 337 Charlotte in North Asheville. The Opal String Quartet will lend their passionate and incisive style to romantic masterpieces by Brahms and Bloch, as well as two brand new compositions by local composer Tim Winter of Saluda. Winter's works are jazzy, lush, intriguing, and highly listenable, and create the perfect counterpoint for the deep sonorities of Johannes Bra...

St. Paul and the Broken Bones

Grit, elemental rhythm, tight-as-a-drumhead playing, and a profound depth of feeling: these are the promises of a great soul band. And St. Paul & The Broken Bones deliver on those promises. Half The City is the compelling full-length Single Lock/Thirty Tigers debut of the Birmingham, Alabama-based sextet, who have already created a maelstrom of interest with their roof-raising live shows and self-released four-song 2012 EP. Produced by Ben Tanner of Alabama Shakes, and recorded and mixed in ...

Celtober at Highland Brewing Company

A celebration of the best in Celtic Tribal / Rock / Pop / Traditional / Fusion, featuring three of the most exciting bands on the Celtic festival circuit today. Vendors of handcrafted and imported Irish/Scottish goods, award-winning regional barbecue and fresh local-brewed beer, plus a Saturday night costume contest!

Jimmy Eat World

Jimmy Eat World is commemorating the ten year anniversary of their hit album Futures by performing the record from beginning to end. Jimmy Eat World will also reissue their albums Static Prevails, Clarity and Futures this fall. All of the titles are available as double LP’s for pre-order now at


MARK FARINA Mark Farina has thrilled crowds globally, entertaining over 1 million fans per year. As one of the most ubiquitous DJs in Dance Music, Farina’s known for both his unique style of mixing Jazz, Downtempo and House Music as well as being the creator of Mushroom Jazz:West Coast jazzy, organic productions combined with East Coast Hip-Hop, Urban beats. Drawing from his vibrant youth, which included being a trumpet player in marching band, a drummer in a nu wave cover band and a guest...

Mountain Music Mash

  • October 25, 2014
  • Location: Downtown Brevard
  • Address: 175 E. Main St., Brevard, NC 28712

Transylvania County's Annual Old Time & Bluegrass Competition Cash prizes for winners of each category! Street Dance at the end of the day with the winning band! Categories: Ballad Singing Banjo Fiddle Open Band.

Ooh La La's Holiday Bazaar

  • October 25, 2014
  • Location: Pritchard Park, Downtown Asheville

Ooh La La's Holiday Bazaar is happy to announce its 3rd season this fall. A continuation of the Curiosity Market that took place this Summer in Pritchard Park, located in the center of beautiful downtown Asheville. The Holiday Bazaar will showcase the work of more than a dozen local artists. Taking place over three Saturdays this Fall from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Oct. 18th, Oct. 25 and Nov. 1st. Ooh La La's Holiday Bazaar will feature works by local painters, leather smiths, jewelry makers, potters, ...

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