Making art + media in the mountains since 1969.
Founded in 1974, June Appal Recordings has distributed mountain music over a period of time in which the very definition of what it means to be “mountain music” has grown and evolved.
The first album ever released on our label was by Nimrod Workman, who was the subject of an Appalshop film the following year by Scott Faulkner and Anthony Slone. Often breaking out into impromptu performances of traditional ballads and original songs — for which he won a National Heritage Award — Nimrod set the tone for the inventiveness and cultural heft that would typify so many June Appal Recordings.
Nearly 100 albums later, June Appal is still representing artists today. Our latest release, The Gospel by The Local Honeys, dropped in the fall of 2019. The album propelled The Local Honeys on an international tour to take “mountain music” far beyond the geographical confines of Appalachia.
Other young artists like Kevin Howard and Brett Ratliff are also still working musicians releasing work today (in fact, Brett Ratliff is also on the staff of our radio station WMMT 88.7 FM).
In addition to representing independent local artists, we also partner with local and regional organizations like Cowan Creek Mountain Music School, with whom we released a compilation called All Join Hands, a collection of traditional mountain square dance tunes performed by contemporary masters and young artists alike.
June Appal’s early recordings contain some of the best examples of Appalachian traditional music — a genre that has been foundational to the development of American popular music, as well as being sonically pleasing in its own right.
It’s the mission of the Appalshop archive to conserve and preserve this great body of work. Appalshop’s state-of-the-art archive contains thousands of hours of audio recordings well beyond June Appal’s catalogue. With recordings of tradition bearers who are now deceased alongside legends still alive today, Appalshop’s archive has been integral to the ongoing work of our record label.
Seedtime’s goal is to be a mirror for mountain people and communities, highlighting our cultural riches and the vibrancy of our region.
Started in 1986, it fast became a summer staple for old-time and bluegrass music. But its lineup has evolved with the region to include acts like Joan Brannon (West African drumming), Cornbread & Tortillas (a fusion band from central and South America, Greece, and Appalachia) and Grits & Soul (soul and blues from the Deep South). Typical Seedtime on the Cumberland schedules now also include a companion punk show in Appalshop’s Boone building across the street.
Alongside music, Seedtime on the Cumberland lineups feature workshops, readings, a show in our art gallery, and a square dance with our neighbors at Carcassonne Square Dance. Seedtime has become a space for regional artists, makers, and craftsmen to showcase their talents and wares with live demonstrations.
We broadcast Seedtime on the Cumberland live on the airwaves of our radio station, WMMT 88.7 FM, sending it out to the entire world via wmmt.org. Seedtime is always free and open to the public.
Artists featured on June Appal recordings include James "Pigmeat" Jarrett, the early 20th century Geechee-Cherokee barrelhouse blues pianist; Nate Polly, retired railroad worker and contemporary songwriter; and Lily May Ledford, member of the original Coon Creek Girls — one of the first all-women string bands to appear on radio.
They include Si Kahn, contemporary labor rights activist and folk music legend; Brett Ratliff, contemporary innovator of traditional banjo styles and founder of Kentucky Old-Time Music, Inc.; and James Still, long-term writer-in-residence at Hindman Settlement School.
The June Appal catalogue presents unique pairings like Morgan and Lee Sexton, two masters of mountain banjo styles related by both blood and virtuosity, and Addie Graham, ballad singer and documenter of 19th century railroad songs, whose grandson, Rich Kirby, was himself one of the founders of June Appal Recordings.
Our catalog represents the breadth of Appalachian music, from old-time traditional to bluegrass and Americana. With almost 100 records released on June Appal Recordings, a wide variety of albums are available in digital, CD, cassette tape, and LP formats.
|100 Years Farther On||Uncle Charlie Osborne||1990|
|12-String Moonrise||John Stanfield||1983|
|65 Years of Irish Music||Michael J. Kennedy||1977|
|All Join Hands! Traditional Music for Square Dancing||Cowan Creek Mountain Music School||2005|
|Ancient Creek||Gurney Norman||1976|
|Aunt Dinah's Quilting Party||New River Boys||1975|
|Ballads for the Sad Cafe||Jack Wright||1977|
|Banish Misfortune||Danglish and Larsen||1978|
|Banjer Days||Various Artists||1999|
|Been A Long Time Traveling||Addie Graham||1978|
|Blizzard Train||Ralph Blizzard & The New Southern Ramblers||1989|
|Brown Lung Cotton Mill Blues||Mountain Musicians Cooperative||1975|
|Buell Kazee||Buell Kazee||1978|
|Butter Beans||Papa Joe Smiddy||2001|
|Carryin' On: Jack Tales for Children of All Ages||Orville Hicks||1990|
|Cities of Gold||Ron Short||1981|
|Cold & Lonesome on a Train||Sparky Rucker||1977|
|Cold Icy Mountain||Brett Ratliff||2008|
|Come All You Tenderhearted||Ginny Hawker & Kay Justice||1993|
|Crossing the Mountain Line||Kevin Howard||2015|
|Deep in Tradition||Tommy Hunter||1975|
|Dillon Bustin's Almanac||Dillon Bustin||1983|
|Dixie Highway Sign||Robin and Linda Williams||1979|
|Dusty Miller||Dusty Miller||1989|
|Echoes From the Mountainside (A Festival Anthology)||Various Artists||1993|
|Fiddle Ditty||Owen 'Snake' Chapman||1990|
|Fields Where Once We Played||The Payroll Boys||1983|
|Finley J. Brewer, Sr. From Road Mountain, TN||Pap Brewer with Gary Brewer & The Kentucky Ramblers||1994|
|For My Friends of Song||Betty Smith||1977|
|From Earth to Heaven||Wry Straw||1978|
|From the Depths of My Soul||Earl Gilmore||1977|
|Galleynipper||J.P. and Annadeene Fraley||1990|
|Gems||Lily May Ledford||2000|
|Glory to the Meeting House||Charlie Stamper||2014|
|Grandfather's Greatest Hits, Vol. 1||Roadside Theater||1976|
|Green Rocky Road||Guy Carawan||1977|
|Harmony||Robin and Linda Williams||1981|
|Headed Back||Nate Polly||2018|
|Heritage||James Still & Randy Wilson||1992|
|Hills & Hollers: Hammered Dulcimer and Guitar Duets||Jim Miller||1984|
|Hits from Home||Tom Bledsoe & Rich Kirby||1982|
|How Can I Keep From Singing?||John McCutcheon||1975|
|Hush My Restless Soul||Carla Grover||1995|
|I've Got the Blues (For My Kentucky Home)||Buzzard Rock String Band||1988|
|In Full Swing||Luke Smathers String Band||1981|
|In the Land of Melody||Wade & Julia Mainer||1992|
|It Just Suits Me||David Holt||1981|
|It's Never Too Late||Larry Sparks & The Lonesome Ramblers||1980|
|Jack Alive!||Ray Hicks||1989|
|Johnny Come Along||John Harrod||2017|
|Last Chance||The Home Folks||1979|
|Last Chance Rider||Bob Martin||1982|
|Last Possum Up the Tree||George Gibson||2000|
|Life of the Party||Metropolitan Blues All Stars||1986|
|Look at the People||Pigmeat Jarrett||1979|
|Mountain State Music||Andrew F. Boarman||1978|
|Mountain Swing||Luke Smathers||1978|
|Mountain Tales||Roadside Theater||1980|
|New Wood||Si Kahn||1975|
|Oso Special||Goose Creek Symphony||1990|
|Passin' Thru The Garden||Nimrod Workman||1974|
|Precious Memories||Bluegrass Meditations||1982|
|Red Wing||I.D. Stamper||1977|
|Relics & Treasures||Charlie Osborne||1985|
|Road to Home||Marion Sumner||1980|
|Rock Dust||Morgan Sexton||1989|
|Seedtime on the Cumberland Sampler 1990-91||Various Artists||1991|
|Seedtime on the Cumberland Vol. II||Various Artists||1987|
|Seedtime on the Cumberland Vol. III||Various Artists||1998|
|Shady Grove||Morgan Sexton||1992|
|Shuffle Rag||Andy Cohen||1978|
|Signs & Wonders||Kay Justice & Ginny Hawker||1990|
|Southern Melody||Odus Maggard||1995|
|Sweet Rivers||Jean Ritchie||1981|
|Sycamore Tea||Dutch Cove Old Time String Band||1978|
|The 5th Generation||Gary Brewer and Phil Sexton||1997|
|The Banjo Still Rings||Phil Sexton||1995|
|The Eagle and the Sparrow||Jon Sundell||1976|
|The First of Autumn||Danglish and Larsen||1978|
|The June Appal Recordings||Uncle Charlie Osborne||2008|
|The Local Honeys (Sing the Gospel)||The Local Honeys||2019|
|The Very Day I'm Gone: Songs of Addie Graham||Various Artists||2015|
|The Wind That Shakes the Barley||John McCutcheon||1977|
|They Can't Put It Back||Mike Kline and Rich Kirby||1977|
|Trying Times||Metropolitan Blues All Stars||1988|
|Vocal & Instrumental Blend||Plank Road String Band||1978|
|When The Whistle Blew||Rich and the Po' Folk||2010|
|Whoa Mule||Lee Sexton||2001|
|Wild Hog in the Woods||Fred & Jenny Armstrong-Park||1984|