Appalachian Music Faculty 

Phil Jamison (fiddle, banjo, guitar) Director of Warren Wilson's Appalachian Music Program, Phil is nationally known as a dance caller, old-time musician, and flatfoot dancer. For over thirty years he has been calling dances, performing, and teaching at music festivals and dance events throughout the US and overseas, including twelve years as a member of the Green Grass Cloggers. His flatfoot dancing was featured in the film, Songcatcher, for which he also served as Traditional Dance consultant. Since 1987, he has been a columnist for The Old-Time Herald contributing many articles on traditional dance. From 1982 until 2004, he played guitar with Tennessee fiddler, Ralph Blizard and the New Southern Ramblers, with performances throughout the US including the Smithsonian Folklife Festival and the Library of Congress. In addition to music, Phil also teaches mathematics at Warren Wilson and Coordinates the Old-Time Music and Dance Week at the Swannanoa Gathering, the college's summer program in traditional music.

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Kevin Kehrberg (bass, guitar) teaches courses and ensembles in American music and world music. He is the director of the Warren Wilson College Gamelan as well as the College Chorale, and he also teaches private lessons in double bass, electric bass and guitar. He received a Ph.D. in musicology from the University of Kentucky with a dissertation on Albert E. Brumley, the most influential American gospel song composer of the twentieth century. His research interests include American vernacular sacred music, bluegrass and old-time music, jazz, and music traditions of East and Southeast Asia. As a professional bassist in both jazz and traditional music, Dr. Kehrberg has toured the United States, Canada, and Japan, and his recordings and appearances include Jean Ritchie, Curly Seckler, Lee Sexton, Art Stamper, Slide Hampton, Roger Humphries, Kentucky Jazz Repertory Orchestra, David Long, Rayna Gellert, the Red State Ramblers, Chris Sharp, and the Wildwood Valley Boys. He also studies and performs music from other cultures, particularly those of Indonesia, China, and Thailand, and he is particularly excited to be at Warren Wilson College, a place where he can engage all of these diverse musical interests.

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Wayne Erbsen ( banjo, mandolin, guitar, fiddle) has been involved in traditional Appalachian music for forty years. He has authored thirty books and produced eighteen solo recordings. In additional to his work with Appalachian music, Wayne is an authority on music and folklore of Pioneers, Cowboys, the Civil War, Railroads and gospel music. His Civil War music appears on the soundtrack of the film, Gods and Generals.

Email Wayne: banjo[at]


Ben Harvey (fiddle, banjo, guitar)

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Jeff Keith (mandolin, guitar) Born in western Kentucky, the cultural crossroads of blues and country music that gave rise to bluegrass, Jeff picked up a guitar at the age of thirteen, but he now plays a variety of instruments--including the mandolin and banjo. In 2001, he began performing with Kentucky Wild Horse, a multi-generational band that featured musicians from across the state and embraced a variety of rural musical styles. Their work culminated in the 2007 release of "Spirit of the Lonesome Hills," an album that featured bluegrass, swing, and old time music from across the Bluegrass State. In 2004, Jeff became a founding member of the Red State Ramblers, a collection of young musicians dedicated to performing traditional fiddle tunes in a style reminiscent of their heyday during the early twentieth century. Their albums, "The Red State Ramblers" (2006) and "Commonwealth" (2009), received wide praise for rendering traditional material with a vibrancy that made the music relevant to modern audiences. More recently, the group has toured internationally, sharing American music with audiences in Central Asia and South America. In addition to these projects, Jeff has appeared on recordings by musicians and groups as varied as Rayna Gellert, Goldenrod, Ben Sollee, and Daniel Martin Moore.

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