Shaped-note singing, a new form of sacred music, swept through the Blue Ridge Mountains at the dawn of the 19th century, using triangles, ovals and even half-moons to correspond to the notes of the familiar do-re-mi-fal-sol musical scale. In the mountains of North Carolina, shaped-note singing still thrives in many communities. The Etowah singing, near Hendersonville, has been going on for more than a 100 years, and is held in May and September. In Canton, singers gather at the Morning Star Methodist Church on Old Folks Day, the second Sunday in September.
The "Down the Road on the Blue Ridge Music Trails of North Carolina" podcast highlights bluegrass and old-time music stories, performers, and traditions across the mountain and foothills counties of Western North Carolina. Hosted by Laura Boosinger and produced by Kim Clark of WNCW-FM, the podcast is a joint effort of the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area, the North Carolina Arts Council, WNCW-FM, and the American roots music journal No Depression.