The Paul’s Creek Band
Stories from the banks of Paul’s Creek mix with traditional mountain sounds, originals, folk, bluegrass and more. With a focus on singing and harmonies, Carol plays guitar and dances, Jamie’s on upright bass, Troy’s on banjo and special guest Tim Gardner (High Windy Band) plays fiddle. The group sometimes appears with veteran fiddler Arvil Freeman too. Paul’s Creek loves fun, with the crowd shouting requests and singing along.
“You can tell the members of Paul’s Creek Band like each other, it comes through in their smooth harmonies, their solid playing and the infectious good time they bring to their shows” Grammy winner David Holt
Carol Rifkin’s soaring voice shines on everything from bluegrass to Carter Family songs and originals. An award winning vocalist, band member and recording artist, she’s performed on TV, radio, festivals, the BBC documentary “Down Home, Appalachia to Nashville” (with fiddler Tommy Jarrell), the movie “Songcatcher”, U.S. Documentaries including “Rank Strangers”, “Why Old Time” and more. A 30+-year member of the Green Grass Cloggers, she appeared with them in two Emmy Award Winning shows and many festivals. A founding member of the Lake Eden Arts Festival, she formerly served as Assistant Director for 12 years. A journalist who hosts WNCW’s (88.7 FM) popular “This Old Porch”, she writes about music for the Asheville Citizen Times and national publications, and performs at many of the festivals and events in the region.
Troy Harrison is a native of Hot Springs, NC. where his family has lived for generations. Folklorist Bascom Lamar Lunsford collected the English ballad “Little Margaret” from Troy’s Aunt Louetta Payne Etherton. Troy learned banjo in the Madison County schools music program and later studied at the home of legendary Madison County banjo player Obray Ramsey. With multiple banjo styles, he plays two and three finger bluegrass plus old timey claw hammer. Floyd Waldroup of Hot Springs was a major influence and took Troy across W.N.C. and East Tennessee playing old time gospel music; David Shelton of Shelton Laurel helped shape his guitar playing. Troy helps produce the annual Bluff Mountain Festival, both Troy and Carol served on the Folk Heritage Committee, producers of Shindig on the Green and The Mountain Dance and Folk Festival and both appear in the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area’s Traditional Artist Directory.
Jamie Soesbee is a Buncombe County native who started out playing with pop bands, was as a professional studio session musician in the ‘70s and ‘80s and toured internationally with Jazz groups and various dance bands. In 1979, he played bass on the top hit gospel single of all time- Squire Parson’s “Sweet Beulah Land”. An award winning bass player (1st place Mountain State Fair 2009) who genre jumps with ease, he is distantly related to the legendary country singer Jimmie Rodgers who had roots in Asheville. Jamie is completely at home on the upright bass as well as electric bass, sometimes sings lead in a fine clear voice and lends harmonies to many of the songs Carol and Troy sing.
Tim Gardner is a fiddler and multi-instrumentalist from Brevard, NC and grew up playing traditional string band music with his family. He has performed and recorded with many artists around western North Carolina including the High Windy Band and Carolina Blue. In addition to winning many awards in fiddle and band competitions, Tim teaches fiddle lessons for all levels and produces recordings for local musicians.