Contrary to popular belief, string band music — you know, the stuff created via banjos, fiddles and jugs (among other “old-timey” instruments) and associated with “backwoods” culture (and, er, the Beverly Hillbillies) — was originated by African Americans. That fact (along with the fact that the banjo was actually created in Africa) might have been forgotten if not for the work of bands like the Carolina Chocolate Drops.
Comprised of members Don Flemons, Rhiannon Giddens and Hubby Jenkins and hailing from Durham, the trio of young musicians has been gaining notoriety and winning awards for playing classic black string band music with a decidedly modern twist as a collective for more than six years. And whenever the group hits the stage, it sells out seats and moves audiences to fits of hand-clapping and foot-stomping. Expect the same scenario when the Drops drop into Charlotte on Dec. 3. (Frazey Ford opens the show.)