Jerald and Mary Lou Mowery recently presented the Northeast Texas Community College Foundation with $10,500. The gift provided $10,000 to establish the Russell-Mowery Perpetual Honors Scholarship and $500 for current honors scholarships. The Mowerys are pictured presenting the donation to Dr. Jonathan McCullough (left), NTCC Executive Vice President for Advancement. To learn more about Honors Northeast, visit www.ntcc.edu/honors.
The Whatley Center for the Performing Arts at Northeast Texas Community College will host a concert by Deb Porter and Friends on Sunday, April 18, at 2:30 pm, with limited seating due to social distancing protocols.
Porter grew up singing the songs learned from grandmother, a sharecropper from Blossom, Texas. This music has stayed with Deb throughout her musical journey and includes old jazz, traditional tunes sung in Northeast Texas’ cotton fields, and the great country songs of Ray Price, Jim Reeves, and Hank Williams.
She plays several instruments and has focused on the “user-friendly” ukulele and mountain dulcimer for the past few decades. She helped found a dulcimer club called the “Northeast Texas Community Chorus” in this area in the 90s after offering dulcimer and banjo classes at NTCC and discovering there was a tremendous interest in folk music locally.
“Deb is a fantastic musician, and this is a great opportunity for us to highlight her talent, along with other artists,” Carolyn Franks, Director of the Whatley Center, said.
Deb has produced eight CD recordings of this traditional music. She also has written two instructional books and three DVDs demonstrating how to play both the dulcimer and ukulele. She performs regularly, before COVID, at folk festivals around the country, and is an in-demand teacher.
For this performance, Deb has assembled an incredible band of talented players who are very happy to get to play live once more as we emerge from the pandemic. David Stanley (bass guitar) was in Dolly Parton’s band for ten years and began his professional career in the 1960s with a chart-topping group, Mouse and the Traps. He went on to great success in both rock and roll and blues musical genres. Brad Davis, a Grammy-winning songwriter, and guitarist will also join Deb. Brad toured with Marty Stuart for 14 years and has been the guitarist for the Billy Bob Thornton band, the Boxmasters, for 18 years. He is also known for his work as a producer and composer of movie soundtracks.
Dr. Ron Clinton, NTCC President, on piano, and multiple National Dulcimer Champions, including Lee Rowe from Nashville, is joining Deb and friends as exceptional guest performers. This show promises to be a joyful one featuring a great music selection from varying styles and decades.
Tickets are $20 for adults and $5 for ages 17 and under, and you can purchase by calling the Whatley Center Box Office at 903-434-8181. To learn more about Deb’s music, visit the website, www.debbieportermusic.com.