Mardis Gras Madness and MUSIC Mayhem!

On The Scene With Tracey Stones


It was Mardis Gras Madness and Music Mayhem last weekend, as we celebrated the season that ends with the start of Epiphany!

We toured the scene from Beaufort to New Bern and found music all along the way! This week, I Googled “Mardi Gras” and picked an article offered by the History Channel. It was more informative than the title lets on.

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Did you know that Mardis Gras in America is older than the Historic Cities of Beaufort and New Bern? Celebrated on US soil in Louisiana for the first time on March 3, 1699. Last weekend marked 320 years of celebrations and hoopla leading up to Epiphany.

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New Orleans is often credited as the original site for the now North American tradition, but I learned in an article that it was actually 60 miles downriver from the city at a place named Point du Mardi Gras by a  “French Canadian explorer  Pierre Le Moyne d’Iberville, who was camping there and realized that it was Fat Tuesday back home and held a small gala.”

To learn more about this festive season check out 9 Things You May Not Know About Mardis Gras.


For me, when it comes to this season I just miss Louisiana. No matter where you live in the state, they do it up right for nearly two weeks, with parades and parties and music to delight the saints, when they come marching in…but let me tell ya, NC ya did well!

Big Jim on Stage at Cru Bar & Wine Store

There were authentic sounds of the season on stage at Cru Bar and Wine Store/Beaufort Coffee Shop last Saturday afternoon. On stage and sharing the blues was Big Jim Kohler Blues Band. Backing up the big guy was Tom Parker on drums, Billy Mobley on bass, Lee Tibbetts on harmonica for the first set and Mrs. Big Jim, Kathy Kohler added just the right spice to make the day grand.

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The band now has a Kickstarter campaign up and they are hoping you will join in the support for their next recorded effort. To be a part of that great movement, please visit Big Jim Kohler’s Kickstarter.


Blue Moon Jazz On Middle Lane

When I stepped out back, I heard the fun beats of jazzy blues coming from a stage outside and located on Middle Lane. It was the stage sponsored by the Backstreet Pub. And that is where I found John Van Dyke and his Blue Moon Jazz band celebrating the day with music and makeup.

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It was a wonderful surprise to run into so many great music makers that I know and love. Blue Moon Jazz will return to the area later this month, for a show at Cru Bar and Wine Store/Beaufort Coffee Shop on Friday, March 22, with music being shared from 8:30-11:30 pm.


Big & Richard Play Royal James


I never heard our next act, a country duo that shares some rock and pop songs too, Big and Richard have a lot of fun sharing the songs you know and love. From new country to classics and southern rock and pop they mix things up and keep it fun. Be sure to find the boys on Facebook by visiting Big & Richard.


I caught the duo rocking the stage at Royal James last Saturday afternoon. Beaufort had a lot to see and do for anyone in the mood for a good time.


Wicked Brew Shares The Blues Too


Next up is another band I never heard, but fully enjoyed. I know some of the players here in Wicked Brew, but never heard them all together until this Saturday when they played two shows for the Beaufort crowd.


Chris Lee, Sr. and Tim Rowe stay active on the music scene playing in several different bands. Sometimes the duo teams up as the Remedy and shares their blues. Sometimes you can find Tim Rowe guitarist rocking with FAB the Band and Lee banging on the harp with Wild Blue. This was the first time I saw them together as Wicked Brew and joined by bass player Todd Humphries, drummer Steve Botterbusch, and sax man David Robinson.


After rocking the Backstreet Pub’s Middle Street Stage, they brought it inside to the Cru Bar stage and rocked the night away with the folks that stayed for the nightcap of fun.

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Back In New Bern For Paid Time Off


As the sun set on Middle Lane I made the trek back to New Bern, where I first stopped in BrÜtopia to hear and hug my friends in Paid Time Off. It has been a few months since I checked in with Jenna Huff and her father Rick Huff. The duo shared familiar songs and enjoyed a fun night with friends and family that gathered.


Riding the Rails With The BiPolar Express!

My nightcap of the evening was filled with music by The BiPolar Express, they are the New Bern based trio versed in 80s hair band hits. They rock the scene from New Bern to the Crystal Coast on the regular. When I found them last weekend they were rocking it right, on the deck at Blackbeard’s Triple Play Restaurant.

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For fans and friends of this rocking trio looking to be amazed and entertained, be sure to save the date for Saturday, March 23, 2019. The band rocks the stage at City Stage, 901 B Pollock St, New Bern. Music plays from 8-12 pm and there is a $5.00 admission payable at the door.

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Sunday Sounds at Riverside UNC

 The Neuse River Ramblers played their second gig at The Riverside United Methodist Church, located on Avenue A in downtown New Bern. Lots of folks gathered for the free show last Sunday afternoon. The beautiful crowd offered donations, that went to paying some of the churches residual bills from last fall.

This band is made up of the talented Danny Batten on banjo and backing vocals, Van Rice on guitar and vocals, Andy Franklin on bass and Doug DeSantis on fiddle and mandolin. And tonight they have their third show during ArtWalk, at Community Artists Gallery and Studios located on Middle St. They will be jamming from 5-8 pm tonight!


If you have a band and wish to host a community concert, please know that Simon Spalding is opening the church to area bands interested in hosting a show for the benefit of  Riverside RUMC. He is happy to help you arrange the hour-long concert. Last week was the second show offered at this church and it was also the second concert performed by the Neuse River Ramblers.

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Behind The Scenes With Tracey Stones

It was about five years ago that I went walking with my friend Mindy Moore and talked extensively about the idea of starting up a blog. Fast forward a few years and now I am teaming up with Moore to teach a class about blogging.

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Small Business Center Director at Pamlico Community College, Mindy Moore

Blogging for Small Business

Last week was the first of my four-part series on blogging. Only half of those that signed up attended the class and about halfway through we lost our wifi, which made things a bit challenging.


Nonetheless, I am teamed up with the Small Business Center at Pamlico Community College, who’ll be offering three more snippets of Blogging for Small Business. This series on blogging takes place every Monday in March. It is free to anyone interested in attending. This week we will get familiar with our site and personalize our blog.

Anyone interested in learning more about blogging should sign up and join me at the Pamlico Community Colleges Small Business Center in Bayboro, NC. To sign up and check out all of the classes available for free follow this link:

Small Business Center at PCC


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~ Live Music Options ~

Friday, March 8, 2019

Getting Down Around Town



Tonight marks the second Friday of the Month, which means it is ArtWalk tonight in downtown New Bern. Be sure to visit our fabulous town soon, if not tonight. There are galleries to consider, shops to browse, art to buy, artisans to meet, music makers to meet and offerings of wine and cheese, as you wait for a table at one of our fabulous restaurants.

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Neuse River Ramblers will be sharing songs during ArtWalk at Community Artists Gallery & Studios 5-8 pm on Middle St.

Be sure to stop by The Isaac Taylor Garden and visit The Greater Good Gallery on Craven St. Then come meet the artisans on Middle Street at Community Artists Gallery and Studio and Craven Arts Council/Bank of the Arts, while you mingle with music-makers there too. This fun offering happens on the second Friday of the month from 5-8 pm.

Laura Gammons is featured Artist of the Month with her works on display at the New Bern Library. Her opening was earlier this week, but her work will be featured and for sale all month. To see more of her works visit


Friday Night Specials


On the James City Side of that Confounded Bridge




BrÜtopia offers the freshest brewed beer and the good grooves of Justin Castellano live, who will be sharing songs tonight and jamming from 7-10 pm. Free music for your listening pleasure. Come out and support local music, while you enjoy the freshest new beer on tap!


Getting Down Around Town

There is always a reason to head to town and gather for some fun. Tonight’s reason: LIVE MUSIC


The Brown Pelican


The Brown Pelican hosts an evening of great music featuring the talented William Seymour, offering songs from 7-10 pm. Come enjoy a fun night of familiar songs and wonderful originals by this local and regional songwriter. Free music is never free and neither is the gas to get there, please tip the music makers that you meet.


Blackbeard’s Triple Play


Blackbeard’s Triple Play Restaurant, 415 S Front St. The party comes courtesy of Chocolate Chip & Company Band,  they will bring the music to life tomorrow night on the deck with all the grooves you will love. Music plays at 7:30 pm- 11 pm. For more info please reach out and call the club at 252-635-0322.


North Carolina History Center

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New Bern Civic Theatre and Tryon Palace invite you to RISE UP and singalong to the tunes from America’s favorite musical at HAMILTUNES: AN AMERICAN SINGALONG. Don’t throw away your shot to participate in this FREE community event.

Singalong begins at 6:30 p.m. (doors open at 5:30 p.m.)
Tickets are FREE, but must be reserved online. Registration is capped at 300 seats, so register soon! Light concessions and drinks will be available for purchase.

*This event is rated PG-13 for some adult language and situations. This event is a singalong to the music of Hamilton and is not an actual Hamilton performance.

Singing experience is not required and costumes are encouraged!


Location: North Carolina History Center


City Stage New Bern



The hottest ticket in town is right on the out skirts of the city we love. Live on stage after ArtWalk tonight at The City Stage New Bern they offer the amazing Adam Hill Band in town to rock you into tomorrow. $5.00 cover is payable at the door. Music starts at 8 pm and they play until midnight.

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Cruising the Crystal Coast

Atlantic Beach 2016

Morehead City

Promise’ Land Market

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Rubich & Cain will be rocking the stage at Promise’ Land Market with music being shared from 8:30-11:30 pm.


Beaufort, NC

Cru Bar & Wine Store/ The Beaufort Coffee Shop


Cru Bar & Wine Store/ The Beaufort Coffee Shop welcomes. Bobby Webb & Co.

Bobby, Russ, and Tim will be playing this Friday, March 8th at Cru Wine Bar in Beaufort.
Music starts at 8:30 pm. Bring a few friends and come on out for some great music and enjoy some adult beverages.


Royal James


Cecil Gillikin offers the music at Royal James in Beaufort tonight. Check him out on the stag sharing songs you know and even love to sing along to, from 8-11 pm.


Swansboro, NC

The Boro Restaurant & Bar

Offering the live sounds tonight at The Boro Restaurant & Bar will be The Dusty Trio, featuring Hank Barbee, James Durham and Matt Henderson keeping beats from 8-11 pm  You are invited to bring the whole family and enjoy a great night of fine dining with awesome music.


Surf City, NC

The Trailer Bar!

The Trailer Bar welcomes Faith Bardill tonight for the fun and music for music lovers in the Surf City Area. Come out to rock the night away with this talented local entertainer. Music plays from 8:30 until 11:30 pm.

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Rocking Around the Region

Raleigh, NC

The Maywood



The Moon Unit w/ Solar Bear and Green Aisles at The Maywood

Come join The Moon Unit for a sick musical adventure at The Maywood! Green Aisles kicks things off around 9 pm. Lets rage!
Ages: 21+

The Moon Unit –
The Moon Unit is a progressive funk rock outfit hailing from Hickory, North Carolina. The band combines crisp riffs with deep grooves to create a fresh sonic experience for every listener. From lyrical to instrumental arrangements, the dynamic style of their playing includes compositions, live improvisation, and pulls on musical influences like Rush, the Meters, Nirvana, KNOWER, Snarky Puppy, and Weather Report. Composed of Brantley Ramseur (bass/vox), Charlie Garnett (guitar/vox), and Kurt Stracener (drums/vox), The Moon Unit lends each listener their own aural jaunt.
Listen here:

Solar Bear –
Solar Bear is a 3 piece Groove Rock band from Raleigh, NC with a soulful flare. Our writing is simple, yet powerful, speaking on many different topics such as love, life, anguish, and hope. Undeniable grooves are provided by Alex Jolly on the Drums and Robbie Dooley bringing the tastefully melodic bass lines, mixed with the soul-soothing sounds of Jared Place’s voice and Guitar. All together a powerful, dynamic trio.

Green Aisles –

Live at The Maywood
Friday March 8, 2019
658 Maywood Avenue – Raleigh, NC

8:30p doors, 9p show
$10 / ages 21+

** Use venue front door for entry to this show **


The Maywood is located inside the Raleigh beltline, right off I-40 at exit 297, Lake Wheeler Road.
Follow the signs towards downtown Raleigh / NC State Farmer’s Market.
Turn right onto Maywood Avenue (after the Exxon/Subway).
We’re the second building on the left, next door to Trophy on Maywood. Plenty of no hassle FREE parking in our parking lot.
FREE overflow parking on the street.


Durham, NC

The Blue Note Grill

The Blue Note Grill welcomes Handsome Al & the Lookers


MARCH 8, 2019 · FRIDAY * 9PM * $8

Each member of Handsome Al and the Lookers has been making music for lots of years. Dave and Alan most recently with the “Chicken Fried Blues Band,” Emma with “Big Mama E and the Cool,” Richard not so recently with “Nantucket” and “BJ Thomas,” Steve with Al and Dave in “Marie LeBleu & the Comitz.” Boils down to this .. the guys can play and the girl can sing. Have a listen … it’s all in the music.

Emma Davis – vocals
Alan Heckle – guitar, vocals
Dave Youngman – keyboard, sax, guitar, vocals
Steve Boletchek – bass
Richard Gates – drums

NOTE: We do not take reservations on Friday. Seating is first come/first serve. Please arrive after 8 pm for the 9 pm show.


Greenville, NC

AJ McMurphy’s


3’s Company will be playing all your favorites and its gonna be an awesome show. Come grab yourself some good food and cold drinks at one of the coolest places in Greenville. Music plays from 8:00-11:00 pm. This show is free!


Washington, NC

Backwater Jack’s Tiki Bar & Grill

There are some live music choices up to our North tonight. There is a new room to welcome the bands during the winter months at Backwater Jack’s Tiki Bar & Grill. And that is where music is served from 7-10 pm each Thursday, Friday and Saturday night. On Thursdays they welcome all players, with a Low Key Open Mic night hosted by Brian Burke. On Fridays and Saturdays it’s the finest local acts on the list, to entertain you while you dine and drink and unwind.


Answering the Call

Checking things out around the rest of the region, I ask my Facebook followers each week where we can go to hear them play. This is what they said this week.

March 4 at 9:44 PM

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Do you like live music videos? Check out my Live Stream Page on Facebook.

Tracey Stones Live on Facebook

Searching for more events around the region:

Events on Facebook


Thank You for Reading!

Now, PLEASE, Please go out and support live music tonight!  Always call the club in advance to confirm what you read here is true. Many times events change without anyone updating the changes publicly.

I am dedicated to making sure you know where to go to find live music. If you like this blog please sign up and you will get an email each time we publish.

I appreciate my readers, the musicians and the venues who all do a part in keeping live music alive! Give us a like and tell your friends about our mission by sharing this page on your social media pages.

Thanks to the many bands and clubs, thanks for keeping me informed!

When you walk out the door tonight, take kindness with you. Be sure to tip those that serve you and don’t forget the music makers that rock you!

Hug people often and share the love. Make sure you take time to enjoy the dance. Please party safely sweet people! We love having you here with us! Rely on your sober friends, call a cab or sign up to Uber around town tonight!

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Keeping up with the Blogger


Follow me on Facebook:

Feel free to invite me to your events.

If you have a budget for advertising, please consider promoting your next event here!

Do you need music for an event you are planning? Consider the services of:

Tracey Stones Productions

I read emails daily. You can send those to:

Please include the day, the date, the time of the event, the time of your scheduled performance.

Be sure to mention what time doors open and the price of tickets.

Pictures are helpful. You may send links to band websites so I can post those as well.

Thanks so much for helping me reach the people!


~ Support Live Music ~ Support This Blog!

Tracey Stones at work live streaming


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NCMZ.LIVE also has Sponsorship opportunities available. This is a duel offer. If you have an event and would like media coverage for the music portion, please consider NCMZ.LIVE as a reputable music source for promoting your next event.

Tracey Stones Productions, LLC, is currently seeking corporate sponsors to host this site and community events. If you are the CEO of your organization and wish to invest in the arts and music promotions, please consider NCMZ.LIVE as the place to be!

To learn more on any and all of these opportunities, please email today or call the number below.

This site is a free service to support live music. Most often it is published twice weekly as a gentle reminder for people to get out and support live music.

Support the mission. Your donations will help fuel the growth of this informative live music blog. All contributions are appreciated. Thank you for your support!

~Tracey Stones, Writer~

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(318) 789-6929



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