A community institution and a relative newcomer are joining forces to up the music ante in Winston-Salem.
Texas Pete aka Garner Foods and The Ramkat have announced that they will collaborate on a new music series, Tongue & Groove, starting Oct. 25 with a show by Ben Folds, a genre-defying rock star and a Winston-Salem native.
The partners say they intend “to create an all-new concert series to bring world-class artists to the Piedmont Triad.”
Folds is considered one of the major musical influencers of his generation. As a singer/songwriter, Fold’s genre-bending talent has impacted music from pop to classical. Folds, who just released his memoir — “A Dream About Lightning Bugs” — which in part shares stories of his early years growing up in North Carolina, was the frontman for Ben Folds Five.
Over the years, he’s collaborated with a host of other artists from Sara Bareilles to William Shatner, and has enjoyed a successful solo career. For more than 10 years, Folds has performed with some of the world’s greatest symphony orchestras, and in 2017 was named as the first ever artistic advisor to the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center.
“I’m looking forward to kicking off the Tongue & Groove Concert Series in my hometown,” Folds said. “Special concert series like this can enhance the cultural diversity of a community, and this series in particular will help spotlight the rich music scene of this region.”
Andy Tennille is a co-owner of The Ramkat.
“Our hope is that we present three to four artists each year, and the series grows from there,” Tennille said. “We’re grateful to our friends at Texas Pete for partnering with us on a concert series with one simple goal: creating an intimate, one-of-a-kind experience for fans and artists alike.”
Glenn Garner is the chief marketing officer at Garner Foods.
“When we heard what our friends at The Ramkat were trying to accomplish, we knew right away that we wanted to be a part of it,” Garner said. “With these folks, I had no doubt it would be about more than just putting on some concerts. It would be the sharing of culture and community, and food is also a big part of that.”
Headquartered in Winston-Salem, Garner Foods is famous for its Texas Pete Hot Sauce.