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Bill Lynch

Staff writer
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Hard work paying off for Martinsburg native Christian Lopez


Christian Lopez doesn’t believe in giving up.

After the Martinsburg native made two mad dashes at stardom on “American Idol,” he quit trying to find fame through television and set out on his ...

In support of the banjo


Eleanor Underhill never intended to pick up the banjo. She blames her mom.

Morgantown nurse-midwife pens sequel to ‘Midwife of Hope River’


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Author Patsy Harman doesn’t know if her midwife novels will ever turn up on television or on the big screen someday, but she keeps hoping.

The longtime Morgantown resident laughed ...

West Virginia superband to open Vandalia


They say a band is only as great as the sum of its parts. With a band like the West Virginia All-Star Bluegrass Band, the individual parts add up to quite a lot.

Aretha Franklin Clay Center performance was ‘practically a historical event’


The awful, unavoidable truth is that vocalists do not get better with age. After 20, 30 or 40 years, most of them lose power and range, and usually, the more notable the vocalist, the more noticeable the loss.

The ...

Morocco made lasting impression on Peace Corps volunteer


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The little dog Shauna Steadman took in a year ago might be the friendliest little dog in Charleston. He’s at least the friendliest little dog on the block.

“I got him a year...

Black Stone Cherry, a year out from “Magic Mountain”


A year ago, Kentucky’s Black Stone Cherry released its fourth studio record, “Magic Mountain.”

After that, the hard-rock band, which performs Tu...

WV filmmaker using Kickstarter for Sci-Fi short in Charleston


Filmmaker Sheridan Cleland said he believes that if West Virginia wants to develop a film industry, it needs to have more films made here, even if that means West Virginians have to make them first.

Cleland and his...

’80s Morgantown staple The Social Demons returns with a CD


Michael Tomasky is known for a lot of things. A noted liberal author, editor and journalist, the Morgantown native has had an enviable career in letters. He’s written for everybody from Newsweek and The Washington...

Goldenseal magazine’s John Lilly signs off, but not really


John Lilly spent his last day on the job as editor of Goldenseal doing many of the things he’d done over the past 18 years — making calls, putting things in their right place and returning pictures to peopl...

Cafe buttering up customers toward a better way to eat


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The problem with eating healthy is good food takes time to prepare, even if you’re just having salad.

Downtown at lunch, it’s easier to just grab a sandwich at the drive-thr...

Mikey Mason, the 'rock star' of comedy, visits South Charleston


Little Mikey Mason was in fourth grade when a teacher asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up.

'CYAC Cares!' stages series of social-action plays


Some theater is just for entertainment, some theater is just for the art of it and some theater is more about a kind of responsibility. Dan Kehde said the Contemporary Youth Arts Company's social-action plays are theater...

Woody Hawley Series coming back in fall


When Ron Sowell decided to revive the Woody Hawley Series after a year’s hiatus, he said it was going to be a “make or break” kind of year for the series.

He was going to have to tackle it with...

Actress find dream role in ‘Into the Woods’


ctress Kristin Pennington gushed when she talked about Charleston Light Opera Guild’s latest production, Stephen Sondheim’s “Into the Woods.”

“I love ‘Into the Woods,ȁ...

Shots from the Bar


It's been a couple of weeks since we last checked in with Shots from the Bar, but that doesn't mean Charleston and assorted location has been all that quiet. The weather has warmed up and people are slowly unplugging fro...

5 questions (and answers) from Thomas Rhett


Country star Thomas Rhett wasn't entirely sure where he was supposed to be on Friday when The Gazz spoke with him Wednesday morning, but the 25-year-old Georgia native had it narrowed down between Charleston, WVa., and C...

The other live radio show this weekend


Some plays are meant to be a feast for the eyes with elaborate sets, gorgeous costumes and maybe a fantastic dance number.

Colton Dixon stays grounded with Anchor


Sophomore records are notoriously tough for pop performers. If the first record did well, expectations for the follow-up can be difficult to live up to.

Lineup announced for Festiv-ALT, other FestivALL events


Parker Millsap and The Steel Wheels will headline Festiv-ALT, the alternative music concerts that’s part of FestivALL, on June 20 at Haddad Riverfront Park in Charleston.

Details about the show were released...

Beers to us: Md. brewer offers us a taste test


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Stories that come out of nowhere happen every day. Stories involving free beer don’t.

They don’t even happen every year.

A few weeks ago, Baltimore-based DuClaw Brewin...

Clay Center announces new Broadway in Charleston season


The upcoming Broadway in Charleston series is a mix of Broadway hits and a few familiar (blue) faces.

Jam Theatricals and the Clay Center announced the new series Thursday.

Mel Brook's...

Join Third Day in a night of earnest musical worship


It's not true for every Christian musician, but for guitarist Mark Lee, staying on track with his faith is a lot easier when he's away from home.

Ringling's big-cat man a 2nd-generation trainer


It was only a few months ago that the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus announced that it will phase out its elephant acts over the next couple of years.

Concert preview: The British are coming


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — BBC Concert Orchestra conductor Keith Lockhart likens guest conducting for another orchestra to going on a blind date.

“Sometimes it clicks and sometimes, through no fault of anybo...

W.Va. actor’s biggest break? His nose


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Last summer, “Glee” star Naya Rivera surprised a lot of her fans when she got married to Ryan Dorsey.

“It wasn’t a surprise,” the actress said. “...

Record Store Day returns Saturday


Christmas comes but once a year. The same is true for Record Store Day, which for vinyl record fans is the next best thing to Christmas.

Since 2007, on the third Saturday in April, independent record stores around ...

'Catch and Release' opens Friday at the Alban Arts Center


Playwright Jeremy Richter's play, “Catch and Release,” started off as a kind of emotional bait and switch.

W.Va. International Film Festival returns to LaBelle Theatre


Once again, the West Virginia International Film Festival returns, this year to the LaBelle Theatre, in South Charleston.

From April 17-26, the festival will present critically acclaimed films, most of which weren&...

Expect a ‘ramp’age to hit the East End this weekend


Ramps have gone from being foraged greens favored among the very poor to a rising star on the fine dining scene.

Locally, people still go out and pick their own wild leeks from secret patches all over the West Virg...

Future unclear for Montclaire String Quartet


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — At 3 p.m. today in the Erma Byrd Gallery at the University of Charleston, the members of the Montclaire String Quartet play the final performance of their 25th season in Charleston.

And f...

Iowa native finds “beauty” in Greek Orthodox church


Paul the Apostle was on the road to Damascus when he had the spiritual experience that changed the direction of his life.

Matthew Moore was sitting in civics class in a high school in Iowa.

The burly, bushy-b...

Hip Hop artist Darnell Poole comes from the heart of West Virginia


Growing up in McDowell County, Darnell Poole didn’t dream of becoming a hip hop star. He was more about shooting hoops.

Cosplay veteran returns to Tri-State Comic Con


Marnie Riddell has been doing costume play, cosplay, for a long time.

Milk Carton Kids found in “Monterey”


Most records fall into one of two categories. There's the studio record, where a band goes into a studio, records tracks, and eventually creates an album. There's also a live record, which is an album recorded live at a ...

Community music group to disband after decades


After more than 80 years, Community Music Live!, formerly known as Charleston Community Music Association, will come to an end, the group’s leaders announced.

The group's final performance will be Galleria ...

The List: Five things for your spring calendar


Spring has sprung and it’s time to make plans to be out and about in Charleston. Here are five things to circle on your calendar:

1. Thursday: The opening game for the West Virginia Power at Appalachian Powe...

Going off the trail with Gatsby actress


Amber Mason didn’t see “The Great Gatsby,” the glitzy 2013 film adaptation with Leonardo Di Caprio. She also didn’t catch the 1974 version, with Robert Redford, either, and wasn’t ...

An Outlaw looks at 32


Bands are a lot like marriages. It’s kind of a nice surprise when one lasts for 50 years, but not a huge surprise that a good many end in divorce.

Alt-country band Fifth on the Floor is winding down and will...

Scratching out a living scratching out tunes


Unless you’re a rock star, making a living in music is often kind of piecemeal work. Getting by can be a mix of performing solo shows, playing in the bands of other musicians, selling a little merchandise (usually...

FestivALL to add comedy punch


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — FestivAll will return for its 11th year June 19-28, with another 10 days of music, dance, theater and art.

Details for the festival were announced Monday at the Clay Center by FestivALL c...