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The Church Sisters Play Blue Ridge Music Center August 20

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The Church SistersGalax, VA -- The sounds of the mountains will ring true as The Church Sisters take the stage on Saturday, August 20, at the Blue Ridge Music Center, milepost 213 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Larry Sigmon and Martha Spencer will kick off this evening of authentic mountain music at 7 p.m.

Sarah and Savannah Church, 19-year-old twins from Galax, Virginia, began their musical career in 2007 after winning a local talent competition on radio station WAKG. Afterward, performance requests from churches, theaters, and festivals poured in. Since the competition, The Church Sisters have traveled the country for shows and have performed with the likes of Rhonda Vincent, The Isaacs, Carl Jackson, Larry Cordle, and Tony Rice.

Sarah and Savannah are known for their angelic, traditional-steeped Blue Ridge Mountain music harmonies. They are backed by some of the region’s best instrumentalists including guitarist Josh Pickett (No Speed Limit), mandolinist Spencer Strickland (Kenny & Amanda Smith Band, Virginia Luthiers Band), and bassist Jacob Eller (No Speed Limit, Sierra Hull).

Larry Sigmon’s introduction to music came early on: first with the harmonica, then playing back up guitar for his father, Lewis Eldridge Sigmon, a banjo and fiddle player. At 15, he finally landed on the banjo, which later became his go-to instrument. After a stint playing with The Sugar Hill Ramblers, Larry met bassist Barbara Poole at a fiddlers’ convention in the late ’80s, the two formed a dynamic duo that began competing and performing together. Their unique sound, with just the banjo, bass, and Sigmon’s distinctive singing style, gained them quite a following.

Throughout their 18 year career, they performed at such places as the Carter Family Fold, the Grand Ole Opry, Lebanon Banjo Gathering, and bluegrass and mountain music festivals all throughout Virginia, North Carolina, Kentucky, West Virginia, Georgia, Florida, and Tennessee. They played together until Poole passed away in 2008.

Joining Sigmon on stage is Martha Spencer, for whom music is a family tradition. She lends her talents to The Whitetop Mountain Band, which includes her mother and father, Thornton and Emily Spencer, as well as the band Spencer Branch, which includes her brother, Kilby. As a multi-instrumentalist (guitar, banjo, fiddle, bass, and vocals), it’s no wonder Martha finds herself collaborating with many musicians in the bluegrass world.

The show is sponsored by Mast General Store and WFDD 88.5: Public Radio for the Piedmont.

During the concert, The Galax Smokehouse will be on site serving its signature barbecue, down-home sides, drinks, and desserts.

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