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Last Hour Bluegrass members (from left) Noah Stills, James Paquette, Caleb Munson, Bailey Wagner and JimBob Thompson won first place Bluegrass Gospel Band at Granite Quarry.  Photo by Gary Hatley 

Local musicians honored at Fiddlers Convention

Several area musicians took home prizes at the 56th Annual Granite Quarry Fiddlers’ Convention this past Saturday night. Held at East Rowan High School, the talent contest is a yearly fund raiser for the Granite Quarry Civitan Club.


“This convention is a direct spin-off of the Union Grove Fiddlers’ Convention,” said Vivian Hopkins, former president of the NC Bluegrass Association, assists the service club as convention coordinator with the acoustic competition. 


The idea for a fiddlers’ convention came from the late James Mathis. Relocating from Union Grove where its fiddlers’ convention was a highly successful fundraiser, Mathis became principal at Granite Quarry Elementary School, joined their civitan club, and along with the late Don Livengood, founded the Granite Quarry Fiddlers’ Convention.


Big T Lassiter of West End served as master of ceremonies. A musician himself, he provided insightful comments and reflections on the musicians and their music throughout the five-hour event. The evening featured competitions in both youth and adult categories, entertainment by area band the Grass Strings and a special award ceremony recognizing longtime banjoist Jim Fraley of Monroe.


Local winners included banjoist Noah Stills of Asheboro and mandolinist JimBob Thompson of Seagrove, who earned the top prize in the gospel band category with their group, Last Hour Bluegrass. Stills also performed in the first-place bluegrass band, Morgan Brown & Railroad Street Revival. 


Second place in the gospel category went to Crossroads Bluegrass that included guitarist/vocalist Derrick Allred of Cedar Falls and bassist/vocalist Travis Brady of Franklinville. Sixteen-year-old Jake Goforth of Troy was awarded second place in the guitar category and his band received third in the bluegrass band category.


Below is a complete listing of all winners from the 2022 Granite Quarry Fiddlers’ Convention.



Bluegrass Band: 1. Morgan Brown & Railroad Street Revival; 2. Cabarrus Station; 3. Jake Ritter Road.

Bluegrass Gospel Band: 1. Last Hour Bluegrass; 2. Crossroads Bluegrass; 3. Third-Strings of Victory.

Fiddle: 1. John Hofmann; 2. Malachi Freeman; 3. Alec McCallister.

Banjo: 1. Alex Edwards; 2. Peden Williams; 3. John Lee.

Guitar: 1. Steve Kilby; 2. Jake Goforth; 3. Caleb Munson.

Mandolin: 1. Angel Paez; 2. James Thompson; 3. Tom Isenhour.

Bass: 1. John Fogleman; 2. Ricky Blackwelder; 3. Bailey Wagner.

Dobro: 1. James Paquette; 2. Pammy Lassiter; 3. Sandy Hatley.

Vocal: 1. Angel Paez; 2. Morgan Brown; 3. Peyton Brown.


Bluegrass band: 1. Brothers of Bluegrass; 2. Dogwood Ridge.

Fiddle: 1. Tyndale Smoker; 2. Teddy Smoker; 3. Addie Webster.

Banjo: 1. Elijah Freeman; 2. Riley Surratt.

Guitar: 1. Ethan Wagoner; 2. Lois Chaney; 3. Nathaniel Smoker.

Mandolin: 1. Luke McCallister; 2. Jonah Chaney; 3. Nicholas Allman.

Bass: 1. Garrett Walmsley; 2. Matthew Chaney.

Dobro: 1. Caleb Parker.

Vocal: 1. Chelsea Edenfield; 2. Brayden Howell; 3. Gabrielle Rogers.

Don and Margaret Livengood Memorial Youth Award: Garrett Walmsley.

2022 Granite Quarry Civitan Fiddlers’ Convention Honoree: Jim Fraley.