Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Getting Loud in Durham

Durham is home to a long history of taking hold of opportunities and squeezing greatness from them. Just look at the tobacco, textile, health care, and biotech industries for examples. Coming on strong in the last decade have been creative industries like culinary arts, design, advertising, and more recently, the music industry.

Already home to Merge Records and ReverbNation, Durham has welcomed two live music venues in the last half of 2010. Both Casbah and Motorco Music Hall have hit the scene as stops on the independent music circuit that are garnering serious attention and praise from touring artists and local bands alike.

With the Grammy Awards coming up on February 13, Durham has four opportunities to show the music world it’s serious about being a community where great music happens.

Arcade Fire, a Merge Records band, has been nominated for three Grammy awards including Album of the Year for its album “The Suburbs.” Signed onto Merge Records in 2001, Arcade Fire was previously nominated for its 2007 album “Neon Bible” but a win on February 13 will be the first for the group and for Merge Records, a Durham based company which is emerging as a hard hitting independent record label.

In addition to Merge Records' success, Durham’s own, Carolina Chocolate Drops, are up for an award in the Best Traditional Folk Album category for their major-label debut “Genuine Negro Jig.” Formed in 2005, the Carolina Chocolate Drops are a string band who expose more listeners to traditional string music. Their style, described by Rolling Stone Magazine as “dirt-floor-dance electricity,” will be on tour through the United States starting in New York, New York in February.

Durham has been moving to the music ever since it “birthed the Piedmont Blues” and with such talented record labels, music groups, and live music venues, Durham will continue to move forward as a leader in the industry.

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