Tapestry, from 90.3 WBHM

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From December 15, 2005...

There are certain places where musicians tend to congregate... music stores that are known for stocking the best gear and employing folks who really know what they're talking about.

For the holidays, some of the biggest stars of the Birmingham stage are coming together for a benefit CD.

Also, indie-rock from The Ackleys. They're still in high school, but critics say they sound like they've been playing together for decades. I'm Greg Bass - and this is Tapestry.

Fretted Instruments

For an acoustic musician, professional or amateur, a trip to Fretted Instruments in Homewood is like visiting a candy shop. Since 1974, this little hole in the wall establishment has offered some of the most elegant and expensive guitars, mandolins and banjos you find anywhere. We paid a holiday visit to Fretted Instruments and it's proprietor, Herb Trotman.

Herb Trotman and Fretted Instruments

As they have for several years now, the Fretted Instruments gang has just put out their new Christmas CD. One of the featured artists is local singer-songwriter Lolly Lee, with her composition Hallelujah.

"Hallelujah" by Lolly Lee

Lolly Lee with her Christmas composition Hallelujah recorded live among the guitar cases at Fretted Instruments. That was Herb Trotman on banjo, Jason Bailey on mandolin and on the fiddle, Rounder recording artist Bruce Molsky. There's more music from the Fretted Instruments Christmas disc available for download on the Tapestry section of our website, wbhm.org.

Merry Show Tunes

Feeling deluged by the mundane Christmas muzak? Jan Hunter and a crew of local musical theatre luminaries have a new CD that offers a little diversion from the December doldrums. It's full of favorite Christmas moments from Broadway and Hollywood. Lending his vocal talents to the production is Tapestry reporter Frank Thompson.

Birmingham theatre stars

To hear the audio portion of the Community Calendar from Tapestry, click here.

Want to know more? Activeculture.info is a one-stop source for finding out what's going on in the Birmingham metro area.

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Maybe you were one of those teenagers who dreamed of making it big in a rock band? Perhaps you spent countless hours in your garage or basement, working out chord progressions or riffing on the guitar? Birmingham band The Ackleys started out that way and today, just two years after the band formed, they're performing around town and have their first CD, on House of Love Records. All this, while juggling high school math and English lit. This is the tune, "Lon Chaney", from the Ackley's self-titled CD. Sisters Katie and Allison Crutchfield stopped by our studios after classes at Oak Mountain High School this week. (AUDIO MONTAGE)

The Ackleys are Katie Crutchfield on guitar and lead vocals, her sister Allison on keyboard, Michael McClellen on bass and Carter Wilson at the drums. The Ackleys play Cave 9 tomorrow night. We have more of their music available for download on our website, wbhm.org.

Tapestry is produced by Tanya Ott and Michael Krall. Hunter Bell produces musician profiles and Francesca Rosko composes the community calendar. Additional reporting this week from Frank Thompson. I'm Greg Bass, on next week's show, we dip into the archives for a gem from Melanie Peeples...

Remember, if you're got a suggestion for a good story for Tapestry, you can always email us at tapestry@wbhm.org.