Humanities Project: Adam C J Klein Performs Music of The Carter Family at CCC on Sept. 24th

Adam C J Klein holding a banjo in a posed photo, river waterfall in background.

Adam C J Klein. Photo Credit: Russell Cusick.

Adam C J Klein will perform at the Coffeyville Community College Spencer/Rounds Performing Arts Theatre at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, September 24th as part of the CCC Humanities Project. The performance is free and open to the public. 

Adam is a musician from New York who sings in many languages, plays and builds traditional American instruments such as banjo, autoharp, dulcimer, jaw harp and rhythm bones. He first encountered the music of the Carter Family in his teens when his family visited the Carter Family Memorial Music Center in Hiltons, Virginia, also known as The Carter Fold – founded by singer Janette Carter, daughter of A.P. and Sara Carter of the trio originally known as The Carter Family, later called the First Family of Country Music.

Adam's and Janette's families became fast friends, and this connection led to friendships with the likes of John McCutcheon, David Morris and The McLain Family Band; Adam continued to build instruments while his brother Moondi entered the bluegrass world to later become lead singer for The Seldom Scene and then Chesapeake, playing with many bluegrass legends. Eventually Adam chose to make his money in the opera world, maintaining connections to Appalachian music in his off-time.

Now, having found a better balance between several worlds of music, Adam is honored, pleased and excited to return to share some of his favorite Carter selections with the good people of the Coffeyville area. He has appeared at other traditional venues including the New England and New Bedford Folk Festivals, and plays with his folk music partner Constance Cook in a duo called Little Blue Heron, whose repertory includes music of many lands and cultures.

Featured instruments in his Coffeyville sets will be a six-string longneck banjo which he plays in a distinct clawhammer style; an autoharp similar to the one the Carters used, but playable in more keys; and mountain dulcimers designed to be more versatile and comprehensive accompaniment devices than the standard quiet lap dulcimer generally encountered. His classical vocal training gives him the power to sing these songs without need of amplification, while sticking stylistically to the way the Carters and other mountain musicians sang them.

For more information about the humanities project at CCC, please call 620-251-7700, ext. 2166.