The Gibson Brothers Lead the Pack

Wingate, N.C. – Bluegrass veteran Del McCoury told The Washington Post: "When I hear someone like the Gibson Brothers, I know it’s them from the first note. They have that little thing in their voices that no one else has." In 2013, that trademark harmony singing earned them eight nominations making them the most nominated group by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA). Fresh from the 24th Annual IBMA Awards at Raleigh’s Duke Energy Center the night before, The Gibson Brothers will make a special concert appearance at The Batte Center at Wingate University on Friday, September 27, 2013 at 7:30 p.m.

2012 was also a year of triumph for the Gibsons, who took home the IBMA Entertainer of the Year trophy, bluegrass music’s highest honor. But it was also a time of tragedy due to the death of their father, the duo’s biggest supporter, who passed away before he saw his sons recognized on bluegrass music’s biggest stage. Kelley Gibson, the last in a line of family farmers who had tended soil and raised dairy cattle since the Civil War, was adamant that his two sons not follow in his footsteps. When it comes to sustainability and stability, a career in music isn’t the first that comes to mind, but Eric and Leigh have made a name for themselves in bluegrass over the past two decades with their spellbinding harmony singing, which calls to mind the high lonesome notes of Bill Monroe as well as the pop/country crooners like the Everly Brothers.

They Called It Music is the Gibson Brothers’ follow up to 2011’s IBMA Album of the Year, Help My Brother and continues their tradition of blending the classic and the modern. The songs on They Called It Music were specifically chosen to highlight the brothers’ hallmark: their sublime harmonies. “That’s always been our calling card,” says Eric, “But we wanted to accentuate it on this record.” Home on the River features close harmony singing throughout the entire song, and on rafter-rattlers like Dusty Old World and Sundown and Sorrow, the harmonies are so tight it’s hard to tell where one brother’s voice ends and the other’s begins.

The five-man band includes Mike Barber on bass for 20 years (earning him the nickname “the third Gibson Brother”), fiddler Clayton Campbell, and Joe Walsh on mandolin. It’s a lineup that gets better with each performance, providing deft and tasteful backing for Leigh and Eric’s harmonies and occasionally tearing through a blistering bluegrass instrumental.

Tickets are $25 and can be purchased online at or by calling The Batte Center Box Office at 704-233-8300 or Carolina Tix at 704-372-1000.

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The Batte Center

Opened in 1999, the George A. Batte, Jr. Fine Arts Center presents events in the McGee Theatre, Plyer-Griffin Recital Hall and Austin Auditorium. Located just a short five minute drive from Monroe, The Batte is just 2 blocks off of Highway 74 and only 30 miles east of Charlotte. Free parking is plentiful and all three performance spaces offer full wheelchair accessibility.


Wingate University

Wingate University, ranked as the 8th "best value" in the South by U.S. News & World Report, serves more than 3,000 students on three campuses in Wingate, Charlotte and Hendersonville, N.C. Founded in 1896, the University offers 35 undergraduate majors, 37 minors and career concentrations, numerous pre-professional programs, graduate degrees in business, accounting, education, physician assistant studies and sport administration, and doctorates in pharmacy, physical therapy and education. With a 14 to 1 student/teacher ratio, Wingate students gain the tools and support needed to excel in academics and apply that learning toward an extraordinary career and life.

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In addition to a robust intramural athletics program, Wingate student athletes compete in 22 NCAA Division II sports. The University has won the South Atlantic Conference Echols Athletic Excellence Award for the past seven years. For more information, go to