Music Series


The series celebrates the rich heritage of African American musicians with ties to Eastern North Carolina, with artist director, Carroll V. Dashiell, Jr., house band and a special monthly guest artist. The music series is part of the African American Music Trails of Eastern North Carolina, a project of the North Carolina Arts Council, an agency of the Department of Natural & Cultural Resources and the counties of Edgecombe, Greene, Jones, Lenoir, Nash, Pitt, Wayne, and Wilson. There is a guidebook and a website where you can learn more at, www.AfricanAmericanMusicNC.com.

Cost: Free

Location: Emerge Gallery & Art Center

Artistic Director: Carroll V. Dashiell, Jr.

Schedule for Spring 202:

  • January 14 - Tribute to Melvin Parker
  • February 11 - Duo Jazz Voice & Solo Piano Music: Christie Dashiell and Allyn Johnson
  • March 11 - Dr. Clarence Knight and William Ford
  • May 13 - Carroll Dashiell and Friends

Check out our past performances here!

Donate to the music series.

about Melvin Parker

   Melvin Parker

The Parker family is a cornerstone of the African American Cultural Trail in eastern North Carolina. Saxophonist Maceo Parker (born in 1943) and drummer Melvin Parker (born in 1944) are brothers born in Kinston, North Carolina. Rising from a musical family where their father played piano and drums and their mother sang at church, both young men became key members of James Brown's band in the 1960s. Melvin Parker contributed a unique drumming style that helped define Brown's funk innovations. He is considered a legend in funk and soul. In 1964 and 1965, Parker was the drummer on three of Brown's recordings: "Out of Sight," "Papa's Got A Brand New Bag," and "I Got You (I Feel Good)." "The greatest drummer I ever had in my life was Melvin Parker," James Brown reflected in 2004 during an interview. "'I Feel Good', 'Papa's Bag' (sic) – nobody ever did that. Nobody. And they can't do it now. And if I was getting ready to cut a record that was right, I would go get Melvin today, because he's just like a metronome." After leaving James Brown’s band, Melvin Parker joined his brother's band, Maceo & All the King's Men. He rejoined Brown briefly in 1976 and played on the hit "Get Up Offa That Thing". Melvin Parker's legendary talent and contributions to the music industry will never be forgotten.

Artist Director


The North Carolina Arts Council, Pitt County Arts Council, Greenville-Pitt Convention & Visitor's Bureau has named Carroll V. Dashiell, Jr. Artistic Director of a new series, The African American Music Series. Carroll Dashiell is a native of Washington, D.C. A graduate of Howard University, with citations in Who's Who in Music and DownBeat Magazine, Carroll has been recognized for excellence in the music industry as a bassist, musical director/conductor and also as a composer/arranger. Affectionately known as CVD, he has been involved in academia for more than three decades serving as professor of music at the Saint Mary's College of Maryland, University of the District of Columbia and East Carolina University in North Carolina. CVD is the producer and writer of A Tribute to Motown Records, (a stage show and concert that celebrates some of the African-American's cultural contributions to the music industry, staged in the tradition of the famous touring Motown Review) that is selling out theaters and venues nation-wide. In addition to composing, writing and arranging, CVD is continuing performances as a jazz bassist and is very humbled to be the Founder and Director of the Dr. Billy Taylor Jazz Festival, named in honor of his mentor.

A special thank you to our presenting sponsor and sponsors.

Presented by:
First Flight
Sponsored by:

Christie Martin and Randall Martoccia
Ncarts50 ConventionandVisitorsBureau   CFAC CVD