Harvey Dalton Arnold found fame on Southern stages, rocking out in bell-bottoms topped with big buckles. But before he opened for Lynyrd Skynyrd touring the country with The Outlaws, Arnold was helping his dad sell Ford tractors and raise chickens in Duplin County. He grew up on the wrong side of the tracks in Rose Hill, a town of just over 1,500 that breaks out the world’s largest frying pan for its yearly Poultry Jubilee. At that jubilee, Arnold caught the music bug from a performance by former North Carolina State Senator Charlie Albertson and his Swingmasters. Since then, Arnold has backed dozens of rock and blues musicians, including legendary Piedmont blues musician John Dee Holeman.
Now 65 years young, Arnold’s blues are steeped with the grit of a cancer survivor and the wisdom of a father who raised the first college graduate in his family. Host Frank Stasio talks with Harvey Dalton Arnold about his musical evolution, forthcoming album, and performances this Saturday at The Rusty Nail in Wilmington and on August 17th in Durham with Big Ron Hunter (a fellow Music Maker Relief Foundation artist) at Durham's Hops and Blues Festival.