Music

Photo of Arab composer Suad Bushnaq
Suad Bushnaq

Suad Bushnaq was born and raised in Amman, Jordan. She composed her first piece of music, a simple birthday song for her brother, when she was just 9 years old. She is now one of a handful of Arab women composers in the world. Her compositions are featured in documentaries and films like “The Curve,” a feature film recently selected at the Dubai International Film Festival.

Pianist Pamela Howland creates musical arrangments using the sounds of The Beatles with a classical music influence.
John Chapman

Pianist Pamela Howland has had a long love affair with legendary Polish composer and pianist Frédéric Chopin. She wrote a one-woman show about his life and documented his roots in a film.

Dale Watson
Sarah Wilson

Guitarist Dale Watson feels out of place in the modern country music world, and he is perfectly OK with that. The Texas musician believes the genre has changed so much that it lost its identity, so he created a new genre of his own—Ameripolitan.

Ameripolitan music is original music with prominent roots influence, and the genre’s tagline is, "We’re not about leaving country music behind, we’re taking the ‘real’ country music with us."

Emil Kang is the executive director for the arts at UNC-Chapel Hill. He wants to elevate the arts to be as big as basketball in Chapel Hill.
UNC-Chapel Hill

Emil Kang bucked expectations when he decided to pursue a career in the arts. He was the first in his family born in the United States after his parents emigrated from Korea, and he was expected to capitalize on the new opportunity by studying medicine.

Southern Culture on the Skids
Ron Keith

Southern Culture on the Skids (SCOTS) formed in Chapel Hill more than 30 years ago. Since then, they have traveled the globe with their brand of southern rock.

BJ Leiderman composed the theme songs of several popular NPR shows.
Cole and Rian Photography

You might not know BJ Leiderman, but there is a good chance you have heard his music.

Josh Moore's Parted Ways

Aug 14, 2015
Josh Moore
Josh Moore

Josh Moore's musical career began in a Christian rock band in Kernersville when he was just 16. After five years, he jumped to a New York alt-punk band called Classic Case, and that led him back to Carrboro, North Carolina. 

Josh has been there for the last decade, composing music and playing in the local scene. But Josh’s friends noticed an increase in his drinking was affecting his music and relationships.

The Epic

Aug 7, 2015
Jazz musician Kamasi Washington
Mike Park

Kamasi Washington has long been known in the world of musical performers, but he is becoming a more popular name in mainstream music in 2015.

He performed on one of the most well-known and well-received hip-hop records this year, Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp A Butterfly. The album increased attention to the intersection of jazz and hip-hop.

Stock photo of Steph Stewart and The Boyfriends in field.
Roxanne Turpen (c) 2014

Steph Stewart grew up in the foothills of western North Carolina surrounded by Appalachian folk music.

The sounds resonated with Stewart and she began creating porch folk music mixed with Americana.

Mark Katz

Six international artists in North Carolina this week demonstrate that international diplomacy can come in many different forms. While many may imagine diplomats wearing business suits and sitting in conference rooms, these artists paint a drastically different picture.

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