Battle of the pick-up bands set for Tar Landing Jam

Published 8:28 pm Saturday, May 11, 2013



Bath – Twice a year, the Cuthrell family invites everyone over. Anyone can come hang out, as long as they bring an appreciation for traditional music and $10 for the good cause du jour.

The spring Tar Landing Jam takes place Saturday starting at 2 p.m. with a local jam and ending with the foot-stompin’, hollering music of After Jack. The good cause to benefit from the spring jam is the Bath Community Library — its upcoming move and the furnishing of a new and improved library at the Old Bath High School — but Cuthrell’s greater goal is to gather those with a common love for music, putting instruments in their hands and letting it all play out.

“It’s getting folks together out here to have some fun playing music,” Rob Cuthrell said. “It’s sort of a community project, it just happens that the Tar Landing Jam is centered around music. I have the building for it, so why not?” he laughed.

The building is a modern barn that doubles as a performance space, complete with stage, seating and lighting. On the spring lineup: Flatland Zingers, an old-time string band made up of BCTMA long-time members Linda Boyer, Reid Courson, Cuthrell, Chris Furlough and Eric Holmes; Naughty Pines, guitarists/vocalists duo Ann Meadows and Parham Howell take on bluegrass to country; and After Jack a female trio whose musical roots run deep in the Appalachian soil and are topped off by tight vocal harmonies accompanied by fiddle, banjo, accordion, washboard, ukulele, guitar, mandolin, oboe and percussion.

While those groups are headlining the event beginning at 6 p.m., an experiment in music will be taking place earlier in the day and will likely have fascinating results, according to Cuthrell. The Instant Jam Band Contest is a first for the Tar Landing Jam, but it’s bound to be entertaining: musicians must register (and pay $5) to participate because at 4:30 p.m., names will be randomly drawn five at a time, throwing those five people into an on-the-fly band. They’ll have half an hour to 1) name their band; 2) come up with two songs to play, each featuring a different vocalist; and 3) practice those songs, because next up is a live performance for the crowd.

The Tar Landing Jam is located at 304 Tar Landing Drive, off of Creek Road near the intersection of U.S. Highway 264 East (near Bath). The event is sponsored by the Beaufort County Traditional Music Association and Tar Landing Company, LLC. For more information visit



Admission is $10, 

free for children under 12

2 p.m. Community jam: bring your own instruments and songs and join in the music

4:30 p.m. Instant jam band contest

5:15 p.m. Instant jam band performances

6 p.m. Flatland Zingers: an old-time string band with Linda Boyer, Reid Courson, Rob Cuthrell, Chris Furlough and Eric Holmes

7 p.m. Instant jam band awards

7:15 p.m. Naughty Pines: vocalist/guitarist Ann Meadows and Parham Howell perform original songs and cover tunes from bluegrass standards to contemporary country

8 p.m. After Jack: foot-stompin’, hollering, good music by this female trio inspired by the musical roots of the Blue Ridge Mountains.