Sheila Kay Adams - Queen of the Banjo & Storytelling

The legacy of female ballad singers continued into the 1960s as Dellie Norton’s great niece by marriage, Sheila Adams, took an interest in the songs and stories. When growing up, Sheila would take all the old ballad singers to festivals and both learned to sing and to tell stories from those experiences. She has become one of the most widely recognized of the traditional artists from Madison County in the late 1990s and into the 21st century.

Dellie Norton & Sheila in the 1970s Photo copyright Rob Amberg 2010

The legacy of female ballad singers continued into the 1960s as Dellie Norton’s great niece by marriage, Sheila Adams, took an interest in the songs and stories. When growing up, Sheila would take all the old ballad singers to festivals and both learned to sing and to tell stories from those experiences. She has become one of the most widely recognized of the traditional artists from Madison County in the late 1990s and into the 21st century.

 

Sheila Kay Adams in the 1970s Photo copyright Rob Amberg 2010

She has released several CDs showcasing her award winning accomplishments on the 5-string banjo. Her talent at storytelling led her to another career in writing novels based on her childhood and the community in which she grew up. Come Go Home With Me, was a 1997 winner of the North Carolina Historical Society’s award for historical fiction. My Old True Love ( 2004) is a fictional novel based upon a true family story. It was a finalist for the Southeastern Booksellers Association’s 2004 Book of the Year Award and a finalist for the Appalachian Writers Association’s 2004 Book of the Year Award.

In April, 1998, Sheila was chosen to receive the prestigious North Carolina Folklore Society’s Brown-Hudson Award in recognition of her valuable contributions to the study of North Carolina folklore. She served as vocal coach in the 2000 movie Songcatcher, a fictional story about collecting the old ballads in the area in the early 1900s.

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Featured Businesses in Madison County

Walnut Creek Gallery

2970 Walnut Creek Road Marshall, North Carolina 28753
(828) 649-0568

Walnut Creek Gallery

Sandy Bottom Trail Rides

1459 Caney Fork Road Marshall, North Carolina 28753
(828) 649-3464

Sandy Bottom Trail Rides

Wolf Ridge Ski Resort

578 Valley View Circle Mars Hill, North Carolina 28754
(828) 689-4119

Wolf Ridge Ski Resort

Zimmerman’s Berry Farm

2260 Revere Road Marshall, North Carolina 28753
(828) 656-2056

Zimmerman’s Berry Farm

Toops Photojournalist Services

774 Wilson Cove Branch Road Marshall, North Carolina 28753
(828) 649-3276

Toops Photojournalist Services

Hot Springs Rafting Company

22 U.S. 25 Hot Springs, North Carolina 28743
877 530-7238

Hot Springs Rafting Company

Mad County Brewing

45 North Main Street Marshall, North Carolina 28753
828-649-8600

Mad County Brewing

Little Creek Cafe

11660 U.S. 23 Mars Hill, 28754
(828) 689-2307

Little Creek Cafe

Sweet Monkey Bakery & Cafe

133 South Main Street Marshall, North Carolina 28753
(828) 649-2489

Sweet Monkey Bakery & Cafe

French Broad Rafting and Ziplines

9800 Old US highway 25-70 Marshall, North Carolina 28753
(800) 570-7238

French Broad Rafting and Ziplines

Madison County Tourism Development Authority

56 South Main Street
Mars Hill, NC 28754

Click here for Driving Directions

Contact
 

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Local: (828) 680-9031

Toll Free: (877) 262-3476

Mailing Address: PO Box 1527
    Mars Hill, NC 28754