Festival Stages

Friday Schedule

The Alex Beaton Stage

10:00 - 10:45 Brothers McLeod
11:00 - 11:30 Opening Ceremony (Quiet on stage)
11:30 - 12:15 Tune Sheperds
12:30 - 1:15 Colin Shoemaker
1:30 - 2:15 Tune Sheperds
2:30 - 3:15 Colin Shoemaker
3:30 - 4:30 Brothers McLeod

The Groves I

10:00 - 10:45 Strathspan
11:00 - 11:30 Opening Ceremony (Quiet on stage)
11:30 - 12:15 Ed Miller
12:30 - 1:15 Will MacMorran
1:30 - 2:15 Ed Miller
2:30 - 3:15 Will MacMorran
3:30 - 4:30 Chambless and Muse

The Groves II

10:00- 11:00 Mike Ogletree
11:00 - 11:30 Opening Ceremony (Quiet on stage)
11:30 - 12:15 Sean Heely Band
12:30-1:15 North of Argyll
1:30 - 2:15 Albannach
2:30 - 3:15 North of Argyll
3:30-4:30 Sean Heely Band


Saturday Schedule

The Alex Beaton Stage10:00 - 10:45
Piping Competitions 11:00 - 11:50
Field Ceremony (Quiet on stage)
11:50 - 12:30 Piping Competitions
12:45 - 2:15 Piping Competitions
2:15 - 3:00 Piping Competitions
3:10 - 3:50 Piping Competitions
4:00 - 5:00 Piping Competitions

The Groves I

10:00 - 11:00 StrathSpan 
11:00 - 11:50 Field Ceremony (Quiet on stage)
12:00-12:45 Will MacMorran
1:00 - 1:45 Chambless and Muse
2:00 - 3:00 Reel Sisters
3:15 - 4:00 Ed Miller
4:15 - 5:00 Hannah Seng

The Groves II

10:00 - 11:00 Mike Ogletree
11:00 - 11:50 Field Ceremony (Quiet on stage)
12:00 - 12:45 North of Argyll
1:00 - 1:45 Albannach
2:00 - 3:00 Sean Heely Band
3:15 - 4:00 North of Argyll
4:15-5:00 Albannach

Sunday Schedule

The Alex Beaton Stage

12:00 - 12:45 Piping Competitions
1:00 - 1:45 Piping Competitions
2:00 - 2:40 Piping Competitions
2:45 - 3:20 Piping Competitions
3:30 - 3:55 Piping Competitions
3:45 Piping Competitions

The Groves I

12:00 - 12:45 Ed Miller
1:00 -1:45 Will MacMorran
2:00 - 2:45 Hannah Seng
3:00 - 3:55 Reel Sisters
3:55 Grove 1 Invasion on the Field

The Groves II

12:00 - 12:45 Sean Heely Band
1:00- 1:45 North of Argyll
2:00-2:45 Albannach
3:00-3:55 Sean Heely Band
3:55 Grove 2 Invasion on the Field



EJ Jones- Music Director



Tune Shepherds

   The Tune Shepherds, a trio of Asheville musicians with flute, fiddle, and guitar, delight in finding and arranging older Scottish instrumental music.                                   

    This mostly 17th & 18th C. music was published in dozens of folios—interesting and unusual melodies that the Shepherds bring to 21st C. listeners.  You might hear something from Aberdeenshire reminiscent of a gypsy camp; or fiddle music from Perthshire with Beatlesque melody lines; or perhaps a flowing harp tune honoring Clan Gordon. Nothing commonplace here.

   Time spent with The Tune Shepherds—flute player and maker Chris Abell; country dance fiddler Michael Garner; and Grammy winning guitarist Bruce Nemerov—is time spent discovering an old world of sound made new.

North of Argyll

North of Argyll is a premier Celtic fusion band blending Celtic music with Contemporary influences. The band has captivated audiences with over 250 main stage performances, which include foot-stomping beats accompanied with captivating stories, legends, and humor. North of Argyll delivers an unforgettable experience that leaves audiences in awe. With a proven track record of success and a commitment to excellence, North of Argyll is the ideal choice for any event seeking to elevate its entertainment value.

North of Argyll

Will MacMorran

Will MacMorran is a multi-talented musician, audio engineer, and educator based in Johnson City, TN. Will has had the honor of touring with The Chieftains as their guitar player the past few years and has spent the last 15 years touring nationally and internationally with well known artists in the celtic, pop, and country genres. Will started piping at a young age and quickly added the guitar, whistles, accordion, and bouzouki among other instruments to his skill set. Will toured with Celtic rock pioneers Seven Nations for 10 years on bagpipes. In addition, Will currently teaches in East Tennessee State University’s Bluegrass, Old Time, and Country Music Studies Program and is the Department Head of Entertainment Technology at Northeast State Community College.


Albannach - Founded in 2005, this Pipes & Drum band has taken the USA by storm. Their unique style, charismatic stage performance, and love for all things Scottish has drawn crowds from coast to coast. These Celtic Rock Stars are as charismatic off stage as they are on. Being charming, intelligent, funny AND Scottish make all the right ingredients for a great interview. Radio, TV, Print they are comfortable with it all!



Ed Miller

Ed Miller has been hailed as “one of the finest singers to come out of the Scottish Folksong Revival” and as “one of Scotland’s best singing exports.” Originally from Edinburgh, he has for many years been based in Austin, Texas, where he gained graduate degrees in Folklore and Geography at the University of Texas. Ed’s repertoire covers the whole spectrum of Scottish folk music, from old ballads and songs of Robert Burns to more recent songs that add to the huge store of Scots songs. When not on the road, Ed also hosts a long-running folk music show, “Across the Pond,” on Sun Radio, and he has expanded his activities into taking folksong based tours to Scotland each year, and teaching at various folk music camps. His newest CD is Follow the Music, an eclectic mix of seven Scottish songs, four Irish, and one Texan.

The Reel Sisters

The Reel Sisters: a duo steeped in the musical tradition of Scottish harp and smallpipes. Rosalind and Kelly share lifetimes of experience in the traditional music community and the technical expertise of classical training. Compelling tunes combine with The Sisters’ approachable, lighthearted personalities to create a unique and intimate musical experience. The Reel Sisters’ music is uplifting, stirring, and just sweet fun.


Brothers McLeod

Brothers McLeod, David and Michael, began performing in 2014. David studied bioengineering as an undergraduate at Clemson University with research interests including upper-limb prostheses, signal analysis, and machine learning. He will begin doctoral studies at George Washington University in biomedical instrumentation in Fall 2019. Michael is a professional level solo competitive bagpiper who attends Furman University majoring in biology to pursue a career in dentistry.

Both have been members of numerous bands including Palmetto Pipes and Drums of Columbia, SC; Upstate United of Clemson, SC; and the Atlanta Pipe Band. They also perform at events such as weddings, Burns Dinners, Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan services, parades and veterans’ services, and debutante balls. Most notably, they have performed as entertainers on the Alex Beaton Stage at the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games since 2015.


StrathSpan creates a musical tapestry of the rich tones of cello interwoven with the lyrical voice of the violin. The sound of StrathSpan starts with traditional Scottish pipe and fiddle tunes, layering innovative harmonies and rhythms. The repertoire ranges from elegant marches and strathspeys to driving reels, from lively jigs to soulful airs, with occasional forays into Irish, Scandinavian, and Breton traditions. The resulting music evokes the timeless sensations of heartbeat and laughter, waves and sea creatures, joyous dance and ancient ceremony.

StrathSpan is Julia Weatherford and her cello at the eastern end of the Swannanoa Valley in North Carolina, and Nora Garver and her fiddle in Asheville at the western end of the Swannanoa Valley. “Strath” means valley in Scots Gaelic.  Thus, they span the valley. Julia and Nora brought together years of astonishingly varied musical experience when they formed their duo in 2015.  Past performances include Grandfather Mountain Highland Games, Swannanoa Gathering, Biltmore Estate, and Whitehorse at Black Mountain.


For more than 25 years, Alabama natives Jil Chambless and Scooter Muse have been performing the music of Scotland, Ireland and early America with various ensembles in a wide variety of venues, from house concerts to festivals and concert halls. Jil and Scooter have been fortunate to work alongside many of the nest artists in Celtic music, resulting in many spontaneous collaborations.

As singer and flute and whistle player, Jil Chambless has performed across the US as well as in Canada, Scotland, and Israel with many artists and bands. In 2009, Jil released her first solo CD, The Ladies Go Dancing, produced by the legendary Brian McNeill. Jil brings to any audience a wonderful listening experience from haunting ballads to upbeat songs with a smooth delivery that never fails to bring both smiles and tears.

Scooter Muse has his roots in Bluegrass and is an award-winning 5-string banjo player, and in the late 1980s he moved into the world of Celtic guitar. Scooter’s first solo recording of original guitar instrumentals, Saddell Abbey, was purchased by the Scottish Tourist Board in Kintyre.

In 2010, Jil and Scooter began performing as a duo, playing a variety of venues from small house concerts to major Celtic festivals. Since then they have released three CDs as a duo, The Laverock Sang, Passing Tales & Glories and The Lang Awa’ Ships. They also released a CD with Scottish fiddler John Taylor, Live @ NTIF.

Frances Cunningham

Frances Cunningham is a native of Southeast Texas and fell into Irish music at an early age. She learned the Irish Bouzouki and became a founding member of the Celtic Rock band SixMileBridge which recorded and toured heavily from the late 90s into the 2000s. She moved to Nashville where she picked up the Tenor Banjo and since then has gone on to be an in-demand accompanist and session musician in the Nashville recording scene. She is a winner of the Midwest Fleadh on both the Bouzouki and Banjo. Frances spent 5 years playing the Bouzouki weekly on the Grand Ole Opry in the Mike Snider String Band and was very pleased to be an ambassador for the instrument to Country music audiences during those years.

Frances C by NC

Champion fiddler and singer Seán Heely is one of the most creatively versatile and captivating young artists of his generation. He is a U.S National Scottish Fiddle Champion as well as an award-winning Irish Fiddler and singer in the folk and Gaelic traditions of Scotland and Ireland. Seán holds a degree from University of South Carolina in Classical Violin Performance and was a 2019 Artist in Residence at Strathmore Music Center in Maryland. An educator in demand, Seán is an Adjunct Instructor at American University, he has also been on the faculty at several summer camps such as Acadia Traditional School of Music and Arts, Upper Potomac Fiddle Retreat, and Fiddle Hell Festival.  He has performed in Scotland, Ireland, and at venues in the U.S such as the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.

Mike Ogletree

The Blaxcotsman (aka Mike Ogletree) was born and grew up in Scotland, his mother was a Scottish woman and his father, an African/American, was from Birmingham, Alabama. The blend of these cultural influences over time have given him a unique perspective on life and a singular approach to the art of music and what he contributes to it. His rather quirky origins give life to music with a difference, a sound that is at once familiar yet different and new at the same time, something that can’t be defined without first giving it a few listens.


Hannah Seng with Maya de Vitry

Acoustic musicians Hannah Seng and Maya de Vitry have enjoyed a playful intersection of their musical and artistic lives over a decade of friendship — singing on each other’s porches, playing tunes at festivals, and encouraging each other’s craft and dedication through the inevitably trying times of art-making and music-making. They share a deep love for harmony singing, songwriting, and a love for the traditional Appalachian fiddle and banjo music that anchors their two musical worlds.

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