It’s time for another edition of Stomping Grounds, where we talk to artists about their hometown and why they’re proud to be there. Or not so proud. Who knows.
This week we’ve got Carolina Chocolate Drops, natives of Durham, North Carolina. They recently released the stellar album, Genuine Negro Jig, a collection of songs rich with the sounds of bluegrass and old-time southern music. We recently caught up with CCD’s Justin Robinson to hear about their hometown of Durham.
What’s your town’s nickname?
The Bull City
What’s your nickname for your town?
Why do you live there?
The people, the food, the music and smallish Southern urban landscape.
What is your favorite local attraction (monument, park, etc)?
The Rock Quarry. It’s an abandoned quarry that the state owns that has filled up with water and people go swimming in.
What is your favorite local event/festival?
Hands down, the Beer Festival or Troika, a music festival.
What is the best time of year to be there?
Really anytime, but spring is the best time.
Who is your favorite local celebrity/personality?
Big Daddy Kane lives here as well as Christopher “Play” Martin of Kid ‘n Play.
Where is the best place to drink and what’s their specialty or happy hour?
The Federal. Its specialty is microbrews and imported beers. Always good.
Who has the best jukebox (and what’s in it)?
No sure, nowhere I go has a jukebox.
What is your favorite place to see live music and what was your favorite show there?
The best place to see a show is the Carolina Theatre with the best show being a tie between Joanna Newsom and Of Montreal.
What is your favorite local band?
The Bowerbirds, although technically they are from Raleigh.
What is your favorite diner or restaurant and what is their best dish?
Watts Grocery, and they have a menu that changes with the seasons but consistently their best dish is the steak.
What is your favorite record store and what was your best find there?
Offbeat Music, and the best find was Favela Booty Beats Vol. 1.
What is your favorite local publication (alternative weekly, zine, website or blog)?
That’s an easy one. The Independent Weekly. Anything that you need to know about is going on there. Also, lots of my friends work there.
What is your favorite local shop?
Vert & Vogue. A local clothing boutique that sells organic and sustainably produced, high-fashion clothes.
Photo credit: Julie Roberts