PoP's Southern Thangs: The Tar River Boys


The Tar River Boys

For nearly 40 years, the Tar River Boys have played mountain music with their own lively style, bringing the high lonesome sound to the flatlands of eastern North Carolina.

As a busy doctor in Tarboro, Dr. Peter Temple often pulled out his guitar to unwind after his long days taking care of patients. And when he finally got a night off, usually Wednesdays, he invited friends to join him.

Soon, everyone knew that for the best music around, you should drop by the Victorian house on St. Patrick Street, have a seat on the porch or stairs, and listen as long as you like. Those with instruments joined in the Wednesday night porch pickin’s. The regulars began performing together, and when bluegrass godfather Bill Monroe visited East Carolina University in 1972, they welcomed him with their new name — the Tar River Boys. And one of eastern North Carolina’s best-loved bluegrass bands was born. (Story continues below the audio clips.)


From Free North Carolina


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