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DC Wanderer Finds Roots And Music In Asheville

photo of Ben Phan holding a guitar
Ben Phan

Ben Phan remembers living in a van with his ex-girlfriend, bumming around the country and searching for a place to clean up his act and reinvent himself.

He had squandered his chance to study jazz and classical guitar at Virginia Commonwealth University, but he never lost his love for music or drive for adventure. He wanted a home, and he found one in Asheville. Invigorated by new energy and a new lifestyle, Phan laid down roots and set out on another journey: He grabbed his guitar and a lot of ramen and began to hike the Pacific Crest Trail. On the close to five-month trek from Mexico to Canada, Phan wrote songs and reconnected with his love of music. Phan joins host Frank Stasio from Blue Ridge Public Radio to perform and share stories about his latest album and the Kickstarter campaign that helped produce “Fear is the Teacher.”

Dana is an award-winning producer who began as a personality at Rock 92. Once she started creating content for morning shows, she developed a love for producing. Dana has written and produced for local and syndicated commercial radio for over a decade. WUNC is her debut into public radio and she’s excited to tell deeper, richer stories.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
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