The 2013 Ham & Yam Festival has Gone Country!
Country music will be on tap for the 29th Annual Ham & Yam Festival in Downtown Smithfield. Up-and-coming country trio, The Farm, will open the 2013 Ham & Yam Festival with a free concert starting at 8:30 p.m. on Friday, May 3. American Idol contestant Casey James will close the festival with a free 8:30 p.m. concert on Saturday May 4.
The Farm is in many ways a hybrid act – a trio deeply rooted in Country Music, that folds in sonic elements from a variety of popular-music genres – but the core is built around a solid, identifiable vocal harmony. “There are a lot of bands out there that you could take a member out and not know the difference,” Nick, the fiddle-playing singer, notes. “This is not one of those bands.”
The Farm’s first album demonstrates the various musical sources at work. The crunchy chords in “Fresh Off the Farm” pull from classic rock. “Be Grateful” relies on pop melodicism. And “Farm Party” builds on a hip-hop counter-hook and a rhythmic center that’s old-school R&B at its heart. Despite the outside influences, THE FARM is clearly a country project, built from heartland values, Nick’s snarling fiddle, and those intense harmonies created by three distinct solo voices.
“Home Sweet Home,” the first single from the group's self-titled debut album, reached number nineteen on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. Their newest single is "Be Grateful."
In the fall of 2009, Casey James auditioned for the ninth season of American Idol at the request of his mother, “Had they not allowed people to play instruments, I would never have even tried out,” James said. Turns out, the Idol audience had been waiting for someone like James: his blues and rock guitar skills were unlike anything that show had ever seen, and the calm confidence he radiated after so many years on the road attracted a tremendous following of fans. (His searing blue eyes and effortlessly sexy vocals didn’t hurt, either.) James finished third that season, gaining the respect of not only the judges, but critics nationwide.
After his Idol success, James signed with Sony Music Nashville, and released his self-titled debut album in March of 2012, where it landed at No. 2 on the Billboard Country Albums chart. James co-wrote nine of the eleven tracks, and earned an album co-producer credit as well. His first radio single was the sultry blue-eyed soul of “Let’s Don’t Call It A Night,” a choice James calls “a great introduction to me as an artist.” Now, he couldn’t be more thrilled to have the powerful “Crying On A Suitcase” as his follow-up. “I love the melody line, but I think the lyrics are what make people really relate,” he says. “It comes from an honest place when I sing it, and the passion and the intensity are there.”
“With the generous corporate sponsorship provided by Stevens Sausage, we are absolutely elated to have signed both the Farm and Casey James to perform at the 2013 festival,” states Chris Johnson, Executive Director of the Downtown Smithfield Development Corporation. "With these great artists, the festival promises to be one of the largest attended events in Johnston County history, so come early.”
Friday, 7:00 p.m.
Friday, 8:30 p.m.
The Born Again Trio
Saturday, 9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
Roy Perry Band
Saturday, 10:30 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.
Saturday, 12:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Saturday, 2:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
When Forever Comes
Saturday, 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, 8:30 p.m.