The Farmer is the Man who Feeds Us All - North Carolina Folk Festival

The Farmer is the Man who Feeds Us All

Don Flemons plays the pipes and banjo before a microphone.
Don Flemons plays the pipes and banjo before a microphone.
Dom Flemons, member of the old-time string band The Carolina Chocolate Drops, performing at the 2018 NC Folk Festival.
📷 Photo by Unknown.
Compiled by:
Chris Williams, Executive Director of Eastern Music Festival

At the height of the Covid-19 crisis in March and April, the news was rife with stories about potential food shortages and troubles in our food distribution pipeline. With these news stories in mind, when asked to curate an NCFF listening list I thought that songs and tunes about farming, farmers, and the foods we eat would be appropriate.


Some of the songs and tunes in this list are nostalgic, others funny, and others heartbreakingly sad. A few are from the first generation of commercially-recorded country/folk/hillbilly artists and others are from deep within the old-time string band traditions. Some are by well-known artists like Bob Dylan and Leadbelly and others by more obscure folks. (Anyone familiar with Curley Dan, Wilma Ann and the Danville Mountain Boys?) There’s a little blues, a little country music, and even a little pop thrown in for good measure.


This is by no means an exhaustive survey of the farm/farming genre and no particular political or socio-economic messages are implied.


Enjoy, Chris Williams

Executive Director, Eastern Music Festival

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Bucket Brigade volunteers pose for a photograph.
Bucket Brigade volunteers get ready to collection donations at the 2018 NC Folk Festival.
📷 Photo by Lynn Donovan.

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