Notes from an Inter: Raleigh’s Top 5 Annual Events You Just Can’t Miss

Hello everyone! We are excited to introduce our stellar Spring 2019 intern, Alexa Barker! Originally from Winston Salem, North Carolina, Alexa is a senior at NC State University majoring in Communications with a concentration in Public Relations. She’ll be writing blog posts throughout the semester so keep checking back for more! Read her first post below.

Raleigh, North Carolina, is a bustling city of culture and activity. The Raleigh area is consistently hosting a number of theater productions, live musical performances, sporting events, and popular festivals. It’s important to plan ahead while it’s still early in the year, so here are my top five events that I recommend you mark on your calendars!

Brewgaloo, which is scheduled to take place on April 26th & 27th, is North Carolina’s biggest and most popular craft beer festival. Featuring beers from breweries across the state, a collection of food trucks, and live and local music, Brewgaloo brings in tens of thousands of people each year. Grab some cold beer, yummy food, and listen to some good music with friends. It’s a great way to welcome in the spring season and celebrate North Carolina’s brewing industry.

Packapalooza 2018

Packapalooza 2018

Packapalooza, one of North Carolina State University’s proud traditions, welcomes students back to school in August with this popular street festival. While an exact date has yet to be released for this year’s event, people from all over are welcome to enjoy the local vendors, the great food, and the live and local musical performances. Each year, Packapalooza hosts one big concert at the end of the day to wrap up the festivities. Headling artists have included We The Kings, Scotty McCreery, Parmalee, and more! The turnout is always spectacular, and it’s a great way to spend the day.

Hopscotch Music Festival is a three day party held in downtown Raleigh. This year, it is scheduled to be held September 5th through 7th. Hopscotch caters to music-lovers of all kinds with over 100 bands and a wide range of musical genres. Recent headlining acts have included this year’s Super Bowl guest performer, Big Boi, and recent GRAMMY nominee, Margo Price! This music festival is the perfect occasion to let loose and jam out to music of all genres.

Wide Open Bluegrass Festival is the two-day festival that concludes the World of Bluegrass’s week long event. On September 27th & 28th, Raleigh’s Fayetteville Street will be lined with vendors from all across the state, selling everything from homemade salsa to boutique clothing and accessories. Multiple stages host performances by some of the world’s most talented bluegrass musicians. Regardless of whether or not you have a passion for bluegrass, you won’t be able to stop yourself from enjoying the southern-soul, toe-tappin’ atmosphere.

Jump Little Children performing in Dorton Arena at the NC State Fair 2017

Jump Little Children performing in Dorton Arena at the NC State Fair 2017

The NC State Fair is one of the most highly anticipated events of the year for many North Carolinians. The fair will be held the week of October 17th through 27th this year. The fair is the largest annual event in the state, and attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year! What better way to celebrate the unofficial beginning of the fall season than carnival rides, a huge selection of deep-fried foods, live musical performances, and a brilliant fireworks display? This is an event that encompasses everything that North Carolina is about, and is certainly an event you do not want to miss.

What other events are you looking forward to attending this year?

Notes From An Intern: Calvin’s Holiday Playlist

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The holiday season is upon us and it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! I can still remember what it felt like to wake up as a kid on Christmas morning. All the excitement, and slight anxiety, waiting to see if Santa brought me the top item on my Christmas list. Then, there’s the rush of joy and relief that washes over me when I finally unwrap the present I’ve been asking for all year. There’s no other feeling like that for a child and as the Christmases go by, we all start to lose that sense of euphoria.

To help make it feel magical again, I picked my top 14 most nostalgic Christmas songs (in no particular order) from my childhood to listen to. I encourage you to make your own nostalgic Christmas playlist this holiday season and see if it helps you relive some of those special holiday moments.

Happy Holidays Everyone!

You can stream the playlist here:

  1. Mariah Carey - All I want for Christmas is You - 1994

  2. Faith Hill - Where are You Christmas - 2000

  3. Boys 2 Men - You’re not Alone - 1993

  4. Boys 2 Men - Let it Snow - 1993

  5. Run DMC - Christmas in Hollis - 1988

  6. TLC - Sleigh Ride - 1992

  7. Britney Spears - My only Wish (This Year) - 2000

  8. Jackson 5 - Santa is Comin to Town - 1970

  9. Jackson 5 - I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus

  10. N-Sync - Merry Christmas Happy Holidays - 1998

  11. Destiny's Child - 8 Days of Christmas - 2001

  12. Christina Aguilera - Have yourself a very merry little Christmas  - 2000

  13. Toni Braxton - Christmas in Jamaica - 2001

  14. Nat King Cole - Christmas - 1961

Deep South Entertainment Makes Way for Expansion by Closing Deep South the Bar


A letter from Deep South Entertainment President and CEO, Dave Rose, about the upcoming closure of Deep South the Bar.

November 19, 2018
From: Dave Rose
President / CEO – Deep South Entertainment

It is with heavy hearts that we have decided to close Deep South The Bar. The final show at the venue will take place on December 31, 2018.  While I'm extremely sad to be closing the bar after 11 successful years, I'm excited for what the future holds for the other aspects of our company.  And I'm of course excited about the future of downtown Raleigh and its music community as well.

I co-founded Deep South Entertainment, the parent company for the bar, in 1995 as an artist management and event management company - and we have remained an industry leader in those fields in the 23 years since.  In 2007 we broadened our reach by opening Deep South The Bar, a 100 person capacity live music venue in downtown Raleigh.

During the bar’s 11 years, we focused primarily on quality local live music of all genres.  We have had the privilege to provide a stage for some of the most talented musicians in the world.  I will miss that dearly. I have such fond memories of the musicians and music fans that called Deep South their home.  I'm of course incredibly thankful to the staff, musicians, and patrons that allowed us to carry on all these years.

I estimate Deep South The Bar hosted over 40,000 musicians in our 11 years of business.  We have been a Hopscotch venue since its inaugural year, and we've hosted bluegrass acts during IBMA's World of Bluegrass.  And almost every year since we opened saw us nominated for Best Open Mic in the Triangle by the readers of Indy Week.

Deep South Entertainment recently opened an office in Nashville, TN.  Our Raleigh office is thriving, booking the North Carolina State Fair along with countless other festivals and events throughout Eastern North Carolina, as well as co-producing Raleigh's live music television show, Oak City Sessions.  We plan to grow both of our offices in 2019 as well as explore opening a 3rd location. Additionally I plan to continue to serve on the Raleigh Convention Center and Performing Arts Commission as well as Visit Raleigh’s Live Music Advisory Board.

I cannot overstate how much I will miss the Bar being a part of the downtown Raleigh landscape, but it's time for change.  I realize anytime a business closes, people naturally, and rightfully-so, want to know why it's closing. I wish it were as simple as one defining reason, but it's not.  It's actually 3 main reasons that were all carefully considered:

1.  As much as I love Deep South the Bar, a live music venue is not in the long term plan for the company.  As a strategic and overall long-term plan for Deep South Entertainment, I plan on focusing our resources and efforts on what we do best - Artist management and Event management.  We will of course remain very engaged in the local music scene through our concerts and events, as we always have - long before we even opened a bar. Additionally, many of the national recording artists we represent call North Carolina home in some way or another, and we look forward to growing that roster, worldwide.

2.  Our lease was scheduled to end at the end of 2018, and though our landlord provided us a fair and reasonable offer to renew, I decided not to extend the lease.  With my current business model I would not have been able to sustain under the newly proposed lease. But to be very clear - of the 3 reasons for closing, this one had very little impact on my decision.

3.  The most important reason - I have a 3 year old son and my wife and I are expecting a second child in April of 2019.  Owning a bar just wasn't in the cards for me for the next chapter in my life. Although I have an amazing staff who manage and operate it, it's still a very time-consuming venture owning a bar, often requiring my attention during hours that aren't as conducive to raising a family.  There are many bar owners who raise wonderful families. I admire them tremendously. But for me personally, I just didn't feel like bar ownership was the right move for my family and me during this next chapter of our lives.

Those 3 reasons played a role in my decision to close Deep South the Bar, my family being the most important of those, but all were part of this difficult decision.

To the musicians who allowed me the privilege of hosting your show at Deep South the Bar, I very sincerely thank you.  You work hard on your craft to play and perform your music. I don't take it lightly that you chose our stage as a place to perform those songs.  Thank you very much! I look forward to staying in touch with you all.

To the music fans who came to see shows at our place, you are what made it work. I loved getting to know many of you throughout the years.  Some of my best friends today I met because of Deep South The Bar. Without you there would be no venue or bands. It's because of you that this place worked.  Please continue to support local music by attending shows at other venues in Raleigh - Kings, The Pour House, Maywood, The Lincoln, Slims, etc. (There's too many to list.  Visit to stay updated on local shows).

To the staff.  You are the best in the business. Truly. Thank you for always putting the values of the company first.  It is the best feeling in the world to frequently hear from strangers what a great experience they had at Deep South The Bar.  You are nice to everyone. You are considerate. And you care about the music. I'm the lucky one to have been able to work with you all - this includes those who have worked with us in the past.  I've had a great team over the years. John Booker, thank you for running this bar so successfully for so many years. Amy Cox, thank you for being such an advocate for local music, our company, and for all that you've done to make this bar a success.   

Also, thank you to everyone who has painted a lyric on the wall.  You gave that place character. We have taken photos of all the lyrics and posted them to Deep South the Bar’s Facebook page. You can download yours from there if you’d like.

And most importantly, thank you to my wife Melanie who has helped me in so many ways opening and operating the bar over the past 11 years.  

Thank you all for allowing me to be a part of the best local music scene in the world.  I look forward to my continued growth here and to seeing you all around town.

With much gratitude,

Dave Rose

A list of final shows can be found at (updating regularly over the coming days)

Notes From An Intern: Meet Calvin!

Welcome! My name is Calvin Brown, and I am Deep South Entertainment’s Fall 2018 intern.  


To give you a little background about myself, I was born and raised in New Jersey. I grew up listening to music ranging from Mahalia Jackson, Herbie Hancock and Dave Brubeck to Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, and Michael Jackson. As I grew older, I became heavily influenced by Hip-Hop and R&B’s music culture through listening to artists and groups like Jay-z, Kanye West, Outkast, Wu-Tang Clan, Fugees, Mary J. Blige and Aaliyah.

In 2017, I graduated from The University of The Arts’ in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where I received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Music, Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology.

During my internship with this fall, I hope to gain in depth knowledge about the music industry’s operations, event planning, and social media marketing.

Stay tuned for updates on everything from the NC State Fair, to Oak City Sessions, and more!

Homegrown Music Fest Keeps Growing

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RALEIGH, NC (August 27, 2018) – Deep South Entertainment was awarded the bid to book another year at the NC State Fair.  This marks the 4th continuous year for Deep South and features artists with a North Carolina connection. We are the only State Fair in the country that just features artists with a connection to their own State.  Today, we are proud to announce the very diverse 2018 line-up.  

The Homegrown Music Fest features approximately 70 diverse acts for the 2018 fair. Fairgoers can expect to see 125 sets performed across 3 stages for the 11-day run.   Deep South has gone to great lengths to feature artists representing the depth and diversity of talent that we have across the state of North Carolina. In addition to music, local craft beer will be featured and available for sale in Dorton Arena during the nightly shows for the duration of the fair.

“The Homegrown Music Fest is an opportunity to curate a very diverse and unique experience for the Fair attendees. Although we do have many recognizable and notable artists performing, we really endeavor to create an opportunity for people to discover new music at the Fair,” mentions Amy Cox, Senior Vice President of Deep South Entertainment and Project Manager for the NC State Fair.  

NC State Fair Homegrown Music Fest 2018 Line-up is available at

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Oak City Sessions Returns for Season Two

Raleigh's live music television show, Oak City Sessions, co-produced by The City of Raleigh and Deep South Entertainment, has returned for season two.  The show airs on RTN weekly on Friday nights, and is archived on YouTube for on-demand viewing anytime.  Click the links below to watch full episodes from this season.

Diali Cissokho & Kaira Ba
Eric Scholz
The Band Sorelle
Kate Rhudy
James Dunn
Blanco Basnet

Upcoming episodes will feature The Beast and 6 String Drag.

This season has seen these talented musicians performing throughout Raleigh. Locations include CAM, City of Raleigh Museum, Lake Johnson Park, Tucker House and more.

If you're a musician with a deep connection to Raleigh who has enough material to fill a 35 - 45 minute set, you can apply to play on the show here:

Notes From An Intern: Sydney's Look Back

Hi all!

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Summer is coming to an end and that means we, college students, have to go back to school. Today is my last day interning with Deep South Entertainment, so I wanted to take the time to reflect on my time here. I have had a great time working with Deep South and its staff this summer.

Through the internship program I have learned a lot of information about the music industry and business operations as a whole. I have also gained an understanding of all the hard work that goes into artist management and event planning. I was given the opportunity to do quite a bit of research this summer on platforms and services for artists, which I am grateful for, as they are also applicable to listeners like me.

In addition, I have had the pleasure of being able to create graphics and posters for Deep South artists including Kasey Tyndall, Marcy Playground, and more. This will definitely be beneficial as I continue to grow as a Graphic Designer in school.

Finally, I would like to thank Deep South Entertainment, especially Mikayla, for the learning opportunity and allowing me to get an inside look at an event planning company and the music industry. They provided valuable experiences, such as attending Kasey Tyndall’s music video shoot, which I greatly enjoyed.

That’s it folks!

-Sydney Parker

Notes From An Intern: Let's Review! Part 4

Hi all! I hope your week is going well! Today is the last post of our three part mini series on Deep South’s artists’ singles. The two singles I have left to review are Marcy Playground’s “Good Times” and Stryper’s “Lost”.

Over the course of the summer I’ve been creating many of the graphics for Marcy Playground’s tour, so I’ve been keeping up with their Facebook page. This made me super excited to check out one of their singles, “Good Times”. This single is from 2009, but it's one I really enjoyed so I decided to review it anyway! The song has a nice chill beat that would be perfect for a relaxing boat ride or an afternoon BBQ. The combination of the simple lyrics and tune provides some nostalgic feelings. If you haven’t listened to this one before, stream it now! 

The last song I will be reviewing is Stryper’s “Lost”. I personally don’t listen to a lot of metal music, since it’s not one of my favorite genres, but I did enjoy Stryper’s song. There is a lot of variation in the sound of the song with some fast-paced verses and some super high notes in the chorus. With this, the band does a good job in keeping their audience intrigued. So even if you think this 2018 song might be outside of your taste, think again and give it a shot, you’ll be happily surprised!

That’s it for now. Be sure to stay connected for the final post of my internship! 

Notes from an Intern: Let's Review! Part 3

Hi guys!

I’m back for the next section of our mini series on Deep South’s clients' singles! Today I’m going to be reviewing Kasey Tyndall’s “Bottle and the Bible”, Lainey Wilson’s “Workin’ Overtime”, and Branan Murphy’s “My Life”.

This song from Kasey Tyndall, “Bottle & the Bible” is one of the first songs I got an inside look at through Deep South Entertainment. Within my first week of becoming the summer intern, I got a look at the making of the music video (which I talk about in my first post). This makes the song a special one for me, as I know a bit of the backstory behind Kasey’s lyrics. With that being said, this song is an emotional one for sure but also empowering. If you find yourself in a sticky situation “Bottle & the Bible” is a great one to listen to!

The second song I checked out after joining Deep South was Lainey Wilson’s “Workin’ Overtime” because her music video had just been released on CMT. Out of all of the songs that I’m reviewing I would say that this song is my favorite. I am biased towards country music but this song is both spunky and relatable for a range of people. “Workin’ Overtime” is the perfect summer song with a catchy, upbeat melody. Be sure to check out the music video too, it’s definitely worth the watch!

Both of the first two songs have reflective lyrics that represent their respective artists. Branan Murphy continues this trend with his Christian pop single, “My Life”. Branan’s song is also upbeat with an inspirational vibe. He does a good job of reaching a wide audience by making this song humble and relatable. The music video for “My Life” was just released so be sure to check it out!

That concludes today’s post. I’ll be finishing up our mini series in the near future so be sure to stay connected for that. Have a great week!