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Jonathan Byrd & The Pickup Cowboy Ignite Audiences With Folk-Rock Energy

Jonathan Byrd with The Pickup Cowboy
Jonathan Byrd
Jonathan Byrd with The Pickup Cowboy

Growing up in Chapel Hill, Jonathan Byrd never thought he could make a career out of playing music. But some soul-searching after a stint in the U.S. Navy and a series of disappointing jobs led him to question why he was forcing himself into doing things he wasn’t good at and didn’t love. Jonathan began touring and performing his original songs, folksy ballads infused with bluegrass-style flat-picking and classic rock foundations. With “Pickup Cowboy” Johnny Waken, the duo aims first and foremost to put on a great show that will energize the audience. 

Host Anita Rao speaks with musician Jonathan Byrd who is joined by Johnny Waken to play some songs live in the studio.

Jonathan Byrd & The Pickup Cowboy will play a free concert at 6 p.m. at Durham Central Park on Friday July 28, and are the featured band at Saturdays at Saxapahaw on the 29th. They play at White Horse Black Mountain in Black Mountain on Friday, August 11, at the Sertoma Amphitheater at Bond Park in Cary on Saturday, August 12, and at the Listen Speakeasy in Greensboro on Sunday, August 13.

Host Anita Rao speaks with Jonathan Byrd and Johnny Waken about their sound and how they try to inspire their audiences.

Copyright 2017 North Carolina Public Radio

Jennifer Brookland is a temporary producer for The State of Things.
Anita Rao is the host and creator of "Embodied," a live, weekly radio show and seasonal podcast about sex, relationships & health. She's also the managing editor of WUNC's on-demand content. She has traveled the country recording interviews for the Peabody Award-winning StoryCorps production department, founded and launched a podcast about millennial feminism in the South, and served as the managing editor and regular host of "The State of Things," North Carolina Public Radio's flagship daily, live talk show. Anita was born in a small coal-mining town in Northeast England but spent most of her life growing up in Iowa and has a fond affection for the Midwest.