If you're looking to stay away from the beach traffic in the next couple weeks, go the other way and head to Boone to catch the end of the Appalachian Summer Festival. There's still a few acts left, including the best of the bunch: Rhiannon Giddens.
The Greensboro native is best known for her role in the band she helped found, Carolina Chocolate Drops, but she's been killing at as a solo act for five years now. Lately, you might have even caught her in her new acting gig as Hallie Jordan in Nashville. Giddens' twangy, angelic Americana style fits the mold of an Appalachian music festival like nobody else could.
Her performance will come on the home stretch of the 34th annual Appalachian Summer Festival, which began on July 1 and has already hosted acts ranging from Kool and the Gang to Michael Feinstein. There are two more weeks left, including Giddens' performance at the Schaefer Center for Performing Arts on July 27 at 8 p.m., followed up by "An Intimate Evening with Kristin Chenowith" on August 4th at the same place, same time. Dont get too excited, that doesn't mean what you think it means, she'll likely just be waxing nostalgic about her amazingly succesful career both on stage and TV, still in its prime.
So if you're not down with sunburn, head west. You won't regret it.
(Teaster photo by John Peets)