New Album Preserves the Musical Traditions (and Recipes) of the South

New Album Preserves the Musical Traditions (and Recipes) of the South

The Music Maker Relief Foundation dropped an album that showcases the ties between soulful music and food

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"Biscuits for Your Outside Man” features songs from North Carolina artists such as John Dee Holeman, Algia Mae Hinton and Guitar Gabriel.
“Biscuits for Your Outside Man” features songs from North Carolina artists such as John Dee Holeman, Algia Mae Hinton and Guitar Gabriel.

With tracks titled “Shortnin’ Bread,” “Greasy Greens” and “Cherry Pie,” the lineup for “Biscuits for Your Outside Man” resembles the menu of a hearty Sunday supper. Instead, it’s a compilation of food-themed songs released last month by the Music Maker Relief Foundation. The soulful collection features music spanning three decades from “mostly North Carolina artists and a pinch of South Carolina musicians and a smattering of Georgia musicians,” says founder and executive director Tim Duffy. Proceeds from the album – available on iTunes and Bandcamp and on musicmaker.org – go toward the nonprofit’s aim to support musicians as a way to preserve the musical traditions of the South.

Since the nonprofit routinely holds their board meetings at Crook’s Corner, it was a no-brainer that the restaurant’s chef – and a huge music fan himself – Bill Smith was tapped to pen the liner notes. As Bill writes, “The language of the Blues is especially effective in using the metaphors of food and cooking. It’s both honest and funny. It may seem elemental and primitive at first, but to me, it is great poetry.” The album is the musical equivalent of no-frills soul food – hearty and comforting, you’ll want second helpings. “Play this music when you sit down to dinner,” Bill notes. “It’s as satisfying as a T-bone steak.”

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Jessica is the Executive Editor for Chapel Hill Magazine. As a 2010 grad of UNC, she's happy to be back in town writing, editing and eating around the Triangle.