Chattanooga Now City Beat: Three years of PB & Holiday Jam

Chattanooga Now City Beat: Three years of PB & Holiday Jam

December 5th, 2018 by Barry Courter in Chattnow Music

Jimmy Tawater is shown performing "Christmas Bells" as part of the second annual PB & Holiday Jam.

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

Exactly when we at the paper conceived the idea of showcasing local musicians on the internet is unclear. I think I started thinking about it the minute I learned you could watch a monkey fall off a tree limb after smelling its own finger, but the realities of doing it didn't come into focus until much later.

We've learned a lot about putting stuff online and the perhaps the main thing is: Just because you can do something doesn't mean you should.

Still, it's pretty crazy to me to think that next Wednesday we will post the third PB & Holiday Jam on Facebook and YouTube. You can watch it and the previous two at timesfreepress.com.music. Past performers include Mitch Ryder, Dennis Haskins, James Rogers, Cody McCarver, Smith & Wesley, Jermaine Purifory and Jimmy Tawater. You can also watch more than 100 weekly episodes we've done.

Barry Courter

Barry Courter

Photo by Staff File Photo /Times Free Press.

This year's PB & Holiday Jam, so named because we like to urge people to donate peanut butter to the Chattanooga Area Food Bank, features Spinster, C-Grimey, Natalie and Kendadie Halling with GuitarChattanooga, Randy Steele, Shane Morrow with Rauelle Kelly and Karen McReynolds, and a house band featuring several members of my family, who will be backing Kathy Webb.

We will also feature a special surprise from the members of The Flock House.

The idea behind Music Wednesdays was similar to the idea behind this column when I started writing it more than 20 years ago — there are so many stories to tell, and people to feature, and not all of them rise to the need for a full-blown feature.

We knew that not everyone had a new album coming out, or a huge show coming up, and we knew that even within a band, there is more than one story or one talented musician. We also thought it would be fun to let the drummer play guitar and sing if he or she can, for example.

In all of those Music Wednesday episodes, I think we've probably featured the same artist no more than three times. We've rarely featured the same type of music in back-to-back episodes.

We've done opera, hip-hop, jazz, bluegrass, old-timey, electronic, country, choral and folk. The craziest episode was probably having members of Strung Like a Horse, the Communicators and Nick Lutsko in one room to promote their Something Wicked on Station Street show.

In any case, thanks to all of the musicians. I hope you will check it out.

Contact Barry Courter at bcourter@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6354.

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