Heritage

Black and White Portrait of Billy Taylor sitting at piano, New York, N.Y., ca. 1947
Library of Congress via Flickr

Eastern North Carolina has yielded a rich crop of nationally recognized African American musicians. People like jazz pianist and composer Thelonious Monk.

But many musicians hailing from this part of the state have gone unnoticed. A new book, African American Music Trails of Eastern North Carolina, takes readers on a musical journey through this overlooked region.

Here are five musicians whose roots run deep in Eastern Carolina:

Wikimedia Commons

  

Many people know that during the Trail of Tears, tens of thousands of American Indians were forced to walk to Oklahoma.