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Between a Ballad and a Blues at Tennessee Arts Academy

Carpetbag Theatre Between a Ballad and a Blues

Between a Ballad and a Blues chronicles the life and work of the African-American-Appalachian Renaissance man Howard “Louie Bluie” Armstrong and his musical partners, Ted Bogan and Carl Martin. Together, the three men formed one of the most famous string-band groups in the history of American music. As a group and as solo artists, Armstrong, Bogan, and Martin toured the globe sharing string band music with the world and planting the seeds for other American music forms—including country and blues. The play centers on the character of Howard Armstrong and spans his seven-decade musical career. Armstrong narrates the tale, which is augmented with stories and songs from Bogan and Martin. The excerpt that will be performed during TAA is designed for young audiences and features Bert Tanner as Armstrong, music by Sean McCullough, and stories by the playwright Linda Parris-Bailey.