Salem Speaks bring folk-rock sound to Legends

Michael Bragg

At last year’s annual APPS Battle of The Bands at Legends, folk-rock outfit Salem Speaks came out victorious.

Their award was a cash prize and a guaranteed show at Legends the following year.

Wednesday, Oct. 17 is the day of Salem Speaks’ promised show.

“We are really stoked to be back at Legends after winning the BOTB last year,” said Zach Britt, vocalist and guitarist and sophomore music industry studies major.

Britt is the only member who currently attends Appalachian, with two members – fiddle player Katherine Ririe and guitarist Brad Stokes – studying at Wake Forest University, drummer Austin Hansen studying at Forsyth Technical Community College and bassist Cooper Lindel at Caldwell Community College.

“The distance part is definitely not ideal and we don’t get to practice as much as we want, but we are still tight as a band and still writing and covering new songs,” Stokes said.

Salem Speaks will play two new songs and a cover at their Oct. 17 show.

“Legends is a great place to play,” Britt said. “The energy was crazy last year and we hope that everyone comes out that did last time and others as well.”

Salem Speaks have spent the past year exclusively touring North Carolina, with the most recently relevant in geography being this past August’s Music On The Mountaintop.

“I saw Salem Speaks last year at the BOTB and they were awesome,” said Tia Coulter, a junior electronic media major. “They had a sound similar to what I was really listening to a lot at the time, stuff like Mumford Sons and Old Crow Medicine Show, and it was just as good as anything they were playing.”

Before their show at Legends, Salem Speaks will open for Langhorne Slim at Wake Forest University on Sunday, Oct. 14.

“Opening for Langhorne should be fun,” Stokes said. “We have been doing a lot of gigging at Wake Forest since Katherine and I are up here, so we are familiar with the territory.”

Salem Speaks has self-released two full length projects – 2011’s “Carolina” and 2012’s “Adversary,” both available through their website and iTunes.

“We are planning on bringing the energy when we play Legends, so we want the crowd to be hype as well,” Britt said. “We’re looking forward to being back at the place where we won.”

Doors open at 9 p.m. Admission is $3 for students in advance and $5 for guests at the door.

Story: WILL GREENE, A&E Reporter