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Riley's News
Riley and Dirk Have a new CD!

March 14th 2015

In December of 2014, Dirk Powell and I finally got together down in Louisiana at The Cypress House recording studio and made a recording that we've wanted to put together for years.

The recording is called, "Riley Baugus and Dirk Powell: Tomorrow Morn". It's just two old friends making music that they want to make - the way they want to make it.

We played loads of different instruments, including fiddles, banjos, guitars - some acoustic and some electric, the accordion, drums, bass and even a cheese grater. It was a vintage cheese grater to be sure.

We hope you'll all buy a CD or a digital download from CD Baby, our exclusive distribution point.
Tomorrow Morn CD Cover

You can also like our Facebook page for the recording at Riley Baugus and Dirk Powell: Tomorrow Morn.

Thanks everybody for checking it out and for liking our music!

Riley & Tim At The Birchmere

September 1st 2010

Riley & Tim

Further to their tour earlier this year, Riley and Tim Eriksen will be opening for the Cherryholmes at the Birchmere in Alexandria, VA, tomorrow night, 2nd September, for one night only.

To hear Tim and Riley sing "I Wish My Baby Was Born", click here to go to YouTube and watch a clip that they recorded together this summer.

For ticketing details, visit the Birchmere's website.

700th "Mountain Stage with Larry Groce" on NPR

July 23rd 2010

The 700th "Mountain Stage with Larry Groce" will air again this week beginning 24th July on NPR.

Recorded in Bristol TN/VA back in August 2009, alongside Riley's set, the show features the Robert Cray Band, the Flatlanders, Kasey Chambers & Shane Nicholson and Robin & Linda Williams.

Visit the Mountain Stage website for a list of affiliate radio stations that carry the show. And if you can't make it to a radio this week, you can always listen to Riley's archived peformance here.

Mountain Stage Logo

Touring with Tim Eriksen

May 20th 2010

Tim Eriksen

Riley is currently touring with the amazing Tim Eriksen!

Riley and Tim first met back in 2003 whilst working on the music for the movie 'Cold Mountain', and then went on to share a tour bus on the subsequent 'Great High Mountain' tour.

Since then, they've met up again at the Newport Folk Festival and the Open House Festival in Belfast, before finally getting to tour together as a duo on the US East coast this month.

To hear Tim and Riley sing together click here to go to YouTube and watch a clip from Cold Mountain - Tim's is the voice of the character played by Brendan Gleeson and Riley's is that of actor Ethan Supplee.

For tour dates and venues, visit Riley's schedule page.

Willie Nelson releases "Country Music"

April 30th 2010

With a debut this week on the Billboard Country Albums chart at number 4, and straight in at number 20 on the all genre Billboard 200, Willie Nelson's new release, "Country Music", is already well on it's way to receiving the recognition that it deserves as a country classic.

Released on 20th April, the CD is available at Starbucks and selected online retailers for four weeks, before going on general release.

"..quietly majestic.." (

"..instantly venerable.." (Houston Chronicle)

"..Nelson at his best." (Associated Press)

Riley at Starbucks

But most importantly, it's Willie's 77th birthday today! Happy Birthday Willie!

Off to Durango Bluegrass Meltdown with the Stuart Brothers!

April 15th 2010

Riley, Travis and Trevor

Riley's off to Durango, CO this weekend, where he'll be headlining at the Durango Bluegrass Meltdown with Travis and Trevor Stuart.

Travis and Trevor are two of the finest old time musicians around today and Riley is really happy that the three of them are finally getting to perform together this year.

After Durango, the boys are heading up to Salt Lake City, UT, where they're playing a house concert for the Intermountain Acoustic Music Association. (Riley's schedule page has details for both events).

To get you in the mood, click here to go to YouTube and see Riley, Travis and Trevor play "Lost Train" at the Appalachian State Fiddler's Convention earlier this year.

Willie Nelson on "Soundstage"

February 28th 2010

This week, the eighth season of Soundstage is airing a set from the wonderful Willie Nelson, in celebration of the upcoming release of his country classics disc, "Country Music" (due out April 20 on Rounder).

Recorded in Chicago back in September 2009, the show features some of Nashville's absolute finest, assembled by T-Bone Burnett, producer of "Country Music":   Ronnie McCoury (mandolin),  Russ Pahl (pedal steel),   Chris Sharp (guitar),   Stuart Duncan (fiddle),   Dennis Crouch (bass),   Jim Lauderdale (guitar and backing vocals) and of course Willie's very own harmonica phenomenon, Mickey Raphael.

The Soundstage crew were generous and thoughtful hosts and Riley had a huge amount of fun!

For more information about the show, visit the Soundstage web page here and check your local listings for broadcast times.

700th "Mountain Stage with Larry Groce" now available on line!

October 18th 2009

If you missed the 700th "Mountain Stage with Larry Groce"
on the radio last week, you can now hear it online.

The full, two hour show is now available on the Mountain Stage
archive page.

Riley's complete set can be heard on NPR Music's Mountain Stage archives page - listen to it here!

Mountain Stage Logo

Listen to Riley on "Mountain Stage with Larry Groce"

October 4th 2009

On 16th August, Riley traveled to Bristol TN/VA, where he got to fulfil a long held ambition to play Mountain Stage.

Mountain Stage with Larry Groce, a production of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, is a two-hour radio show recorded before a live audience that has established a long tradition of featuring national and international acts in almost every style of music.

Bristol's Birthplace of Country Music Alliance brought the show to The Paramount Center for the Arts for a sold out night, marking the 700th show produced by Mountain Stage.

Riley shared the bill with the Robert Cray Band, the Flatlanders, Kasey Chambers & Shane Nicholson and Robin & Linda Williams.

The show is due to air during the week beginning 9th October. It can be heard on over 100 National Public Radio affiliates throughout the United States, Voice of America, and XM Satellite Radio - a list is available here Check listings for local broadcast times.

Photo by Brian Blauser
Riley to play at the Old Salem Tavern on Monday May 11th!

April 21st 2009

On May 11th, Riley will be helping to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the very special Old Salem Tavern. There'll be music from 5.30 pm to 6.30 pm, with half price wine and complimentary hors d'oeuvres, and then a celebratory three course dinner is available for $25, while Riley strolls from room to room to serenade you! (Reservations for dinner are recommended).

This is a great opportunity to visit (or to revisit!) a charming and unique establishment. Originally operated by the Moravian Church, the Old Salem Tavern was a favorite of travelers along North Carolina’s back country roads. These days it remains a firm favorite of modern travelers and local residents alike, as they experience a tradition that dates back almost 200 years.

Built in 1816 as an annex to the original tavern next door, the building was restored in 1969 using detailed records from the early Moravians.
Click here for the Old Salem Tavern website and call 336 748 8585 for more information or to make a reservation.
The Riley Baugus Band comes to the Laurel Theatre, Knoxville, TN

September 25th 2008

On Saturday 27th September, Riley will be back in Knoxville, TN, performing at the Laurel Theater.

This is Riley's second visit to the Laurel Theater, and this time he's bringing The Riley Baugus Band with him!

The Riley Baugus Band features two long time friends and musical colleagues of Riley's - Laurelyn Dossett and Joe Thrift.

Laurelyn is a founding member of Polecat Creek and a gifted songwriter. One of Laurelyn's compositions, "Anna Lee", was recently recorded by Levon Helm on his Grammy winning CD, Dirt Farmer.

Joe, a former member of Donna the Buffalo, now makes fine violins in Surry County, NC. Joe and Riley played together in the Red Hots for many years.

For venue information and tickets, contact the Laurel Theatre on (865) 523 7521.
Grand Gorge: No God But Me

August 26th 2008

A new short film by Erika Yeomans entitled "Grand Gorge: No God But Me", premiered this month in New York.

Described as "..a darkly humorous look at the western genre; where white men seek revenge and redemption", the film features not only Riley's rendition of "Now Is The Cool Of The Day", but also Riley's good friend Michael Abbott, Jr in the lead role of Chevron.

Watch out for the film at festivals later in the year.

For more information about Erika and her work, visit For The Rest Of Your Natural Life Productions.
Happy New Year!

January 1st 2008

Riley says:

I've had a great musical 2007 and I'd like to thank everyone who came out to the shows, who bought a CD, who visited this site, who got in touch, the many people I got to meet and, not least, all the people that I worked with this year. Your support is very important to me and I'm extremely grateful.

The world of old time music continues to flourish thanks in large part to the support of all of you. It fills my heart with joy to see so many of you coming out and enjoying the music.

2008 is already looking like it's going to be fun, with trips to the West Coast, Scotland, England, Canada, Florida and the Mid West lined up to date.

I'm looking forward to it all and hope to see you along the way!

Happy New Year!
Best wishes,

"Raising Sand" from Alison Krauss & Robert Plant released today!

October 23rd 2007

Today sees the release of what's being described as "the musical collaboration of the decade" - that's "Raising Sand", the much anticipated CD from Alison Krauss and Robert Plant, produced by T-Bone Burnett and engineered by Mike Piersante.

Late last year, Riley flew to Nashville to participate in the project. There he had the pleasure of working alongside a stellar roster of musicians, including Mike Seeger, Dennis Crouch, Norman Blake, Marc Ribot, Jay Bellerose, Greg Leisz and Patrick Warren.

It was lots of fun to get to work with friends both old and new, but the best bit for Riley is that he appears on a track written by his friend Rosa Lee Watson - "Your Long Journey".

"One of the best albums of the year" Mojo

For more information, visit Rounder Records.
"Ordinary Seasons" - New recording from Polecat Creek!

September 15th 2007

Laurelyn Dossett and Kari Sickenberger have released their third Polecat Creek CD, "Ordinary Seasons".

Riley was delighted to participate in the project, alongside fiddler Natalya Weinstein, mandolin player Eric Robertson and bass player Jeff Hersk.

It was a particular treat to get to work again with Steve Heller, who recorded the first Red Hots album nearly twenty years ago....

"With Ordinary Seasons, Polecat Creek fuses traditional mountain melodies with new lyrics and the result is sublime..simply put, this is plain good music." Tim O'Brien

For more information and to buy the CD, visit Polecat Creek's website.

Photo by Abigail Seymour
Riley featured on NPR's "Weekend Edition"

September 1st 2007

In early August, Riley was privileged to return to the Augusta Heritage Center's Old Time Week in Elkins, West Virginia, to teach advanced banjo.

Riley was delighted to have NPR's Noah Adams come and sit in with his class.

After classes, Noah and Riley spent some time chatting and getting to know each other.

This interview is a product of those discussions.

To listen to the show, click here

Photo by Noah Adams, NPR
Riley's new CD released on Sugar Hill Records!

August 8th 2006

Riley's new CD, Long Steel Rail, was released on Sugar Hill Records on 8th August 2006.

"The instrumental component is impeccable, while Baugus' vocals sound like they've been echoing through the Appalachian Mountains for about 150 years. Quintessential American old-time music" Billboard Magazine

"Riley Baugus delivers an old-time Americana Appalachian folk sound that can only be summed up by the word 'genius'..." Smother Magazine

"In his formative years, highly-regarded, old-time musician Riley Baugus often played with and learned from elders of the tradition in North Carolina and Virginia, including legendary old-time fiddler Tommy Jarrell (a National Heritage Award recipient). Earnest study and total immersion in the wealth of knowledge available to him by virtue of being an insider from the region gave Baugus access to experience that positioned the North Carolina native as standard-bearer and direct link between the art’s pre-commercial beginnings and today.

On Long Steel Rail, Baugus continues to embrace his role in this lineage: singing, fiddling, and playing banjo with absolute love and respect for the humanity and tradition that brings music into his life".  Sugar Hill Records

Produced by Tim O’Brien and Dirk Powell

For further information and to order contact Sugar Hill Records