Abingdon, Virginia – Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail: The Crooked Road is excited to announce that Andrew Small has been selected as the first Artist-In-Residence.

A resident of Floyd County, Small has displayed a deep dedication to the heritage music traditions of SWVA. A versatile musician with an impressive background, he is accomplished as a singer and performer on a variety of instruments including fiddle, mandolin, banjo, guitar, and double bass. He has performed at major venues and festivals on four continents and has toured with artists including Sierra Hull, Mandolin Orange and the North Carolina Symphony.

He is currently the bassist for Bill and the Belles, who play monthly as the house band for the Birthplace of Country Music Museum’s Farm and Fun Time. In addition to touring, Small also participates in fiddlers’ conventions around the Southeast region and has won numerous prizes for both fiddling and singing.
In 2021, Small received a Virginia Folklife Apprenticeship to learn from master fiddler and National Heritage Award-winner Eddie Bond of Fries, VA . He also plays with wife Ashlee Watkins at concerts and dances as well as building a fiddle and learning how to make moonshine.

“As both an active participant with The Crooked Road organization and owner of the Floyd Country Store, heritage music is something that I view as a top priority every day. Andrew has been active in the SWVA music scene and displays a tremendous passion for the music. I have worked in conjunction with him as part of County Sales and the Handmade Music School and think his level of expertise and education will contribute tremendously to this first-year program. Andrew will not only be a strong representative this year but will help shape the Artist-In-Residence program for the future as well,” says Dylan Locke, President of The Crooked Road’s Board of Directors.

As The Crooked Road’s Artist-In-Residence, Small will perform at various events and participate in educational opportunities. He will also contribute an original piece of music or new performance of an existing traditional piece of music for The Crooked Road’s use.

Small says, ““I’m incredibly honored and excited to be the new Artist-In-Residence and I look forward to sharing my passion for heritage music with audiences all along the Crooked Road.”

“Andrew’s commitment to heritage music and love of SWVA provides an amazing opportunity for both advocacy and exposure for The Crooked Road and Andrew,” comments Carrie Beck, The Crooked Road Executive Director.

This program will be supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts.

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About Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail: The Crooked Road (TCR)
The Crooked Road is a 330 mile driving trail through the mountains of Southwest Virginia that connects nine Major Venues and over 60 Affiliated Venues and Festivals that visitors can enjoy every day of the year. Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail: The Crooked Road is also a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization founded in 2004 whose mission is to support economic development in Southwest Virginia by promoting this region’s rich heritage of traditional music.
The Crooked Road office is located at the Southwest Virginia Cultural Center and Marketplace in Abingdon, VA.

General information can be found at The Crooked Road website, www.thecrookedroadva.com, by email at info@thecrookedroad.org or by calling (276) 492-2400, ext. 2409. Southwest Virginia visitation information can be found at www.myswva.org.

Sarah Mast
Author: Sarah Mast