The 2014 Todd Community Preservation Organization (TCPO) Summer Music Series continues this Saturday, Aug. 2 at Cook Memorial Park in Todd, when the Elkville String Band takes the stage at 6 p.m.
Admission is free of charge. There will be food off the grill, snacks and beverages for sale and all proceeds earned will go towards the TCPO. Concert attendees are encouraged to bring a lawn chair or blanket.
The Elkville String Band hails from Wilkes County, performs old-time mountain music, playing mostly older music, but also some newer compositions from past band members Drake Walsh and Jeff Michael. Band members are all very interested in keeping the old traditional music from Western North Carolina and Southwest Virginia preserved for future generations.
The band consists of Herb Key (guitar and vocals), Jim Lloyd (banjo and vocals), Trevor McKenzie (fiddle and vocals) and Bill Williams (harmony singing and bass).
The band was formed in 2001 by Jerry Lankford and served for four years as house band for the Wilkes Playmakers’ annual production of Tom Dooley, a Wilkes County Legend. The Elkville String Band won two Paul Green Multimedia Awards presented by The North Carolina Society of Historians, Inc. for the music they recorded for the play.
One of the most popular songs in their repertory is “Otto Wood the Bandit,” which immortalizes the story of a local outlaw and accomplished jail breaker who was gunned down by the police in 1930. First recorded by the Carolina Buddies in 1931, “Otto Wood the Bandit” has become the Elkville String Band’s signature song and can be found on several of the band’s recordings. In 2012, the band performed music for the play Otto Wood the Bandit by Jerry Lankford and presented at The Record Park in North Wilkesboro.
The Elkville String Band takes its name from the Wilkes County town of Elkville - now known as Ferguson - where Tom Dooley was born.
The Todd Summer Music Series will continue Saturday, Aug. 16, when The Tillers, from Cincinnati, come to Todd.
The TCPO is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization formed in 1999. Its mission is to create a sustainable community while preserving Todd’s history, cultural heritage and natural beauty.
Alan Bulluck can be reached at (336) 846-7164 or on Twitter @albulluck.