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Downtown Bristol Events

Big Idaho Potato Tour Stop

August 21 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum

Join BCM in celebrating the 50th state visiting the museum, and check out the BIG IDAHO POTATO!

To celebrate the 50th State visiting the museum since it opened last August, the Birthplace of Country Music Museum welcomes the Big Idaho Potato Truck on Friday, August 21 from 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

The Big Idaho Potato Truck is on its fourth cross-country journey which began in 2012 as a one-year campaign to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the Idaho Potato Commission. The Truck weighs more than 6 tons (the equivalent of 32,346 medium-sized Idaho® potatoes).

But before you think the giant potato is edible, it's not. It took nearly one year to build out of durable material. It's estimated that it would take more than 10,000 years to grow a potato this size, and would make 30,325 servings of mashed potatoes, more than 1.4 million French fries, and weighs 1,102 times more than the largest potato ever grown, which clocked in at 11 pounds.

For more information about the Big Idaho Potato visit: bigidahopotato.com

James Meadows

August 21 | Quaker Steak and Lube

James Meadows will play Quaker Steak & Lube August 21, 2015 at 8pm.

About James Meadows
James started up his band, James Meadows & The Country Mile Drifters, just after his album officially released in August of 2008. The band is compiled of amazing professional musicians who put on a very high energy show. Their shows contain a huge set list filled with both fan/crowd requested and timeless Classic Country, Top 40 Country, Bluegrass, Southern Rock, and Originals that are sure to blow the walls off of any event or venue.

Malas, Mantras & Meditation Workshop

August 22 | Wellness Yoga of Bristol

Wellness Yoga will host a new workshop, Malas, Mantras & Meditation, Saturday, August 22 from 1-3 pm, followed by their popular Introduction to Essential Oils from 3-4 pm.

The workshop will begin with an introduction to malas, mantras and meditation. To get the creative juices flowing, a short essential yoga class will follow. Next, get crafty by making your own mala to take home and finding the mantra that you need most right now. The class will close with a mediation practice.

Pre-registration for this class is required to ensure enough materials are available. Registration deadline: August 15, 2015.

The Honey Badgers

August 22 | Bristol Brewery

The Honey Badgers will play Bristol Brewery August 22, 2015. Show starts at 7!

JB 5 & Dime

August 22 | Quaker Steak and Lube

JB 5 & Dime will be performing live at Quaker Steak & Lube on Saturday, August 22nd at 8pm.

JB 5 n Dime was established in 2012. Band members include James Brashears (vocals), Jason Shaffer (bass), Jeff Waddell (electric guitar), and Jimmy Richardson (drums). A group of friends with a love for many styles of music. Their musical background includes country, southern rock, soul, and a hint of southern gospel influence. There are a number of covers and originals performed. The covers include songs from artists such as Merle Haggard, Waylon Jennings, George Jones, Garth Brooks etc. Their first demo song She Left Me for Jesus was released in 2012 by producer and engineer Troy Whitson with Sound Asylum.

Bristol Regional Speech and Hearing presents Fiddlin' Carson Peters

August 23 | Paramount Center for the Arts

Bristol Regional Speech & Hearing presents it inaugural Paramount fundraiser featuring Fiddlin' Carson Peters, Sunday, August 23rd at 2pm at the Paramount Center for the Arts.

Downtown Country Music Mural 30th Anniversary Celebration

August 25 | Downtown Center

One of the more notable iconic places to visit when in downtown Bristol is the massive Country Music mural that resides on the side of a building facing the Downtown Center. It has been there for years, as a matter of fact – almost 30 years. In commemoration the 30th anniversary of the mural from design to realization, the City of Bristol, Tennessee along with the Appalachian Cultural Music Association (ACMA) will host an evening of music and tributes to the man whose dream it was to create this one of a kind piece of art, Tim White.

The event is set for Tuesday, August 25, beginning at 7 PM at the Downtown Center located at 810 State Street, in Bristol, Tennessee. There will be an anniversary cake served to the first 150 people arriving for this anniversary party. Everything is free and open to the public. Additional concessions are available on site. More information will be coming soon on the city website and Facebook page.

Everyone who plays music from the area has most likely played on the stage in front of the mural. “We are inviting all the bands who have played on the mural stage to come out and join us for a full evening of entertainment. Tim White and the VW Boys will be playing along with a great bluegrass band, Turkey Creek,” said Angie Rutherford, with the Department of Community Relations. “The mural has been showcased in commercials, magazines, album covers, publicity pictures for an array of bands, high school prom pictures, and lots more,” continued Rutherford. “It is one of the first places country music aficionados flock to when they get to the birthplace of country music. Just about any day when passing by the mural you can see someone taking a picture of the mural or having their picture taken in front of it.”

The ACMA will have a booth at the mural and will have mural tee-shirts and other items for purchase. They will also be there to answer questions about the museum, its hours of operation, and what it features. Memberships to the organization will also be available at the booth.

“We have had rock bands from Michigan to Texas come through along with the young country artists to play the Full Moon Jam concert series at the Downtown Center. They all ask about the story and the people featured on the mural. The one thing they all do is have their picture taken in front of it,” said Rutherford. “We use each opportunity to educate the artists on the origins of the music and what it means in Bristol today. They are encouraged to visit both the Birthplace of Country Music Museum and the Appalachian Cultural Music Museum before they leave town, to learn more about our heritage.”

For more information on the event contact Angie Rutherford at 423-989-5500 Ext. 2054 or email arutherford@bristoltn.org.

Robert Randolph & the Family Band

August 27 | Paramount Center for the Arts

Don't miss this amazing show! The Paramount Center for the Arts presents Robert Randolph & the Family Band August 27th at 7pm.

About Robert Randolph & the Family Band
When Robert Randolph talks about his new album, Lickety Split, a few words come up over and over—"joy," "freedom," "energy." Which is no surprise, really, because those are the same things that immediately spring into a listener's mind when these twelve tracks from the virtuoso pedal steel guitarist and his longtime accompanists, the Family Band, explode out of the speakers.

"My thing is really upbeat, uptempo, with great guitar riffs," says Randolph, summarizing his musical ambitions, "but also catchy choruses and lyrics that someday will make this music into classic tunes."

“Robert Randolph is an American Original," says Don Was, President of Randolph's new label, Blue Note Records. "He has mastered what is, arguably, the most complex instrument in the world and developed a unique voice that is equal parts street-corner church and Bonnaroo. Thisalbum finally captures the energy and excitement of his legendary live performances.”

But for Randolph, the road to Lickety Split—his first studio recording in three years—wasn't an easy path. Though hisdistinctive mix of rock, funk, and rhythm & blues continued to earn a rapturous response from a fervent, international audience, he felt that he had lost some of the enthusiasm and intensity that had driven him to make music in the first place.

"We just weren't being creative musically," he says. "Being on the road 280 days a year, you wind up playing too much and it isn't fun anymore. Soon, you stop being that concerned about how good you can be, how important it is to create and write. You kind of lose sight of that, of being focused on your craft and spending time with your instrument. I've become more in love with my guitar now, and staying relaxed and practicing and trying to create different sounds."

The new album showcases the unique chemistry of the Family Band—comprised of the guitarist's actual family members Marcus Randolph, Danyel Morgan, and Lenesha Randolph, together with guitarist Brett Haas. The eleven original compositions, plus a stomping cover of "Love Rollercoaster" by the Ohio Players, were produced by Robert Randolph & The Family Band, Danyel Morgan, Marcus Randolph, Tommy Sims, Drew Ramsey, and Shannon Sanders; engineered by the legendary Eddie Kramer (Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin); and feature special guest appearances from Trombone Shorty and Carlos Santana.

Randolph notes that the title track of Lickety Split (on which his sister sings the hook) is one of his favorites. "What's great about that one is that it's something we actually played in church, just like that," he says. "There's a section in the service called the 'Jubilee Jam Session Time,' and I can show you video where we played that very same riff."

But if there's one track on the album that captures the band's new spirit, it's one that started as a jam session in a Nashville studio during a break in recording, and later came to be titled "Born Again." "It's about finding the joy again," says Randolph. "At first it was more of a love song, the sense you get when you find the right person, but then as we were recording this new music with a whole new sense of direction, and feeling free again, that all came into it. It's not a religious thing, it's just new energy—which is really the old energy that I had at the beginning of my career."

Robert Randolph & The Family Band first gained national attention with the release of the albumLive at the Wetlandsin 2002. The band followed with three studio recordings over the next eight years—Unclassified,Colorblind, and We Walk This Road—which, together with tireless touring and unforgettable performances at such festivals as Bonnaroo, Austin City Limits, and the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, won them an expanding and passionate fan base.Randolph's unprecedented prowess on his instrument garnered him a spot on Rolling Stone's "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time" list, and alsoattracted the attention of such giants as Eric Clapton and Carlos Santana, who have collaborated with him on stage and in the studio.

"What I've learned from being around those guys—and you never really notice it until the moment is away from you—is that it's really important to them that someone keeps original music going, that you're not just trying to be like everybody else," he says. "Eric really wants to know what's going on now, he's always going 'Show me that lick again!'—they're like little kids, and that's really the great part about it. It makes me think that I need to keep getting better, to stay excited and keep trying to be innovative and keep growing."

Most recently, Randolph has attempted to amplify the tradition from which he came by executive producing the Robert Randolph Presents the Slide Brothers album, a recording which features some of the older "sacred steel" players from the House of God church who inspired him to pick up an instrument. "This is part of my whole story, which a lot of people don't understand," he says. "In our church organization, playing lap steel in church has been going on since the 1920s. These guys were my mentors, my Muddy Waters and B.B. Kings. Thinking that I started this style is like saying Stevie Ray Vaughan was the first guy to play the blues. I wanted to do this record so that everybody could understand the story and start connecting the dots."

He is also taking a bold new step by remodeling an abandoned school building in his hometown of Irvington, New Jersey and opening the Robert Randolph Music and Arts Program. "There hasn't been any arts in the schools, period, since I was in high school," he says. "So my whole motivation changed to a full-on effort to get these kids into music, and also find out what other passions they have and try to offer that. These kids don't have anything to do, they don't have any hope."

With a new label, a new dedication to his craft, and a new sense of responsibility in his life off-stage, it seems like Lickety Split might also represent the urgency Robert Randolph is bringing to all of his efforts these days. "I'm still undiscovered, and that's really the best thing about it," he says. "Now we have the chance to present the music right, and have the story told right, and for me to be focused on being an ambassador for inner-city kids and a role model, and also an ambassador for my instrument and as an artist. As all these things happened, it got fun again."

Also Coming Up

More Upcoming Events »


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Through August 21

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Phyl's Tailgate Party

Saturday 11-7

Join Phyl's for a great time Saturday, August 22 at their downtown Bristol store. It will be an all day, fun event with light refreshments provided.

Save 20% off collegiate items. Save 25% if you wear your team's logo! Gift certificate for the best selfie!



Auditions for Theatre Bristol's "Scrooge! The Musical"

September 5, 8, 12 & 13 | Theatre Bristol

Theatre Bristol announces September audition dates and details for the December production of Scrooge! The Musical at the ARTspace theatre. Veteran and novice actors are invited to audition September 5th, 8th, and 12th, and by appointment on September 13th at Theatre Bristol, 512 State Street, Bristol, TN, for this timeless tale of Ebenezer Scrooge. Roles for men, women, and children are available, as well as opportunities with the production crew.

“Perhaps one of the best-known modern adaptations of [A Christmas Carol] is the musical Scrooge! by Leslie Bricusse. The musical, made into a film in 1970... is traditional, and the stage show has enjoyed noted success in England, where it was hailed as “Sensational” and “Terrific” by BBC Radio 2; and in the Unites States, where it has become an established favorite of regional playhouses nationwide,” Breaking Character. In Bristol, Scrooge! is a holiday tradition, popular by audiences over the years, featuring memorable songs “Thank You Very Much,” “A Better Life” and “A Christmas Carol.”

Directing the show will be highly respected and talented actor/director, Theatre Bristol veteran Glenn Patterson (Les Misérables, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Miracle on 34th Street).

The audition will consist of singing, reading, and dancing. Actors are encouraged to bring a monologue of not more than two minutes and up to 24 measures of a song. Neither the monologue nor song need to be from Scrooge!, but the song should be from musical theatre. For those who do not have a prepared monologue or song, at the audition we will offer monologue options and will teach a song. For audition dates and times and additional important details, please visit www.theatrebristol.org/audition.

Anyone interested in being a part of the production crew may contact Theatre Bristol at info@theatrebristol.org.

Scrooge! The Musical is presented through special arrangement with and all authorized performance materials are supplied by SAMUEL FRENCH, INC.

Founded in 1965, Theatre Bristol is the oldest continually running children’s theatre in northeast Tennessee and now celebrating its 50th season. Its Main Stage season consists of up to five productions. Some of its performances take place in the ARTspace, a multi-purpose, black box theatre which seats up to 120. Theatre Bristol is entirely volunteer run and we invite you to get involved.

For more information, visit the Theatre Bristol’s website or Facebook page, contact Theatre Bristol at 423-212-3625, or email info@theatrebristol.org.