In the late 1980s, then-WFDD News Director Paul Brown created Across the Blue Ridge, a radio program that told some of America’s most fascinating stories through the lens of Appalachian music and cultural history. It became an instant hit and was broadcast on WFDD for more than a decade until Paul left WFDD for NPR in Washington, DC. With Paul back in his cherished Blue Ridge region, and ready to present more music, share discussion with more interesting characters, and be your friend and guide in discovering the rich offerings of traditional Appalachian music, we created a partnership with Paul to bring back the beloved Across the Blue Ridge radio show.
Across the Blue Ridge focuses on the southern Blue Ridge area known through generations and still today as a hotbed of old-time, bluegrass, blues, and country music. And the program reaches far beyond, exploring southern music as the music most people around the world understand as distinctively American. Across the Blue Ridge is smart, irreverent, fun, serious, and entertaining all at once. How could it not be? Its host, Paul Brown, is a well-known former NPR journalist and radio producer who also happens to be a prize-winning banjo picker, fiddle player singer and storyteller. The show is filled with those “a-ha” moments for which public radio is known – moments that help listeners make new connections regarding history, art, music, politics, and the past, present, and future.