Tad Dickens, The Roanoke Times

Tad Dickens

The Roanoke Times

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Past articles by Tad:

Radio days: Local stations ‘a place to escape’ during pandemic lockdowns

As the COVID-19 pandemic forced people to stay distant and mostly indoors over the past couple of months, folks looking for ways to spend their isolated hours had a traditional → Read More

Dr Pepper Park, Blue Ridge PBS plan live-streaming fundraisers for downtown businesses

It's bad news and good news for Dr Pepper Park at the Bridges. The Roanoke outdoor venue had to forgo spring performances from Sebastian Bach, Jamey Johnson and others due → Read More

Seinfeld returns to Roanoke on Friday

Cue up the rumor mill for Jerry Seinfeld sightings. → Read More

Acts to look for at FloydFest

It’s time for FloydFest 16. Although it is actually the 15th one, the organizers decided to use a bit of artistic license and match up the chronological number with the year. FloydFest 16, in 2016. → Read More

Jefferson Center's 2016-17 season combines old soul, new soul

Putting on concerts is one level of difficulty. Putting on a season’s worth, including multiple series shows, is at least a notch tougher. → Read More

Ralph Stanley touched lives in lots of ways

The crowds at Ralph Stanley’s Hills of Home Festival last month knew that things weren’t looking good for one of their bluegrass and mountain music heroes. → Read More

Carroll County graduate Sam Lewis brings band to town after work on Chris Stapleton tour

When Sam Lewis was a student at Carroll County High School, playing guitar and singing was not a big deal to him. He had learned some Nirvana, some Bob Dylan, but wasn’t that much into playing. → Read More

Festival in the Park returns this weekend with new layout, lower prices

Festival in the Park is going to look a little bit different this weekend. It’s also going to be a good deal cheaper. → Read More

Blondie brings Rock and Roll Hall of Fame playlist to Roanoke

Many members of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame make their names on a readily identifiable music style — the blues-rock of the Rolling Stones, the reggae of Bob Marley, Donna Summer’s disco, rap from Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. → Read More

Rebirth Brass Band brings Big Easy tradition to Roanoke

The marching bass drum is a beast. It’s big, and it’s heavy. To wear one and march in a parade takes strength and endurance, not to mention a deeply ingrained sense of time. → Read More

Roanoke remains a favorite stop for Jason Aldean

When Jason Aldean was coming up as a country music performer, he found that certain places in America loved him and his show even though they didn’t know him that well. → Read More

Roanoke's new live music venue is spot on

For more than five years, Kirk Avenue Music Hall in downtown Roanoke provided audiences with an intimate setting for some of the best music to pass through the valley. → Read More

Outdoor concerts to return in 2016 to Elmwood Park, Dr Pepper Park

For a city hungry for outdoor concert options, 2015 was a blast. The recently renovated Elmwood Park hosted two concert series that brought in six national acts, and other entities promoted at least three shows or one-day festivals in a variety of genres. Attendance varied, but a couple of shows drew more than 3,000. → Read More

Musicians who escaped fire look to rebuild from losses

Folk singer, guitarist and songwriter William Izzillo — better known by the stage name Bill Hudson — moved to Southwest Virginia about 18 years ago for the music scene. → Read More

FloydFest 2016 rolls out intial performer lineup with Bruce Hornsby, The Wood Brothers

Soon after last year’s FloydFest ended, co-founder Kris Hodges got on his motorcycle and headed West. → Read More

Downtown funk: Elmwood Park is about to get funky with Morris Day & The Time, Cameo

Good funk and R&B music never goes out of style or sounds dated. → Read More

Kathy Griffin bringing 'D-List' comedy to Roanoke

To interview “Life on the D-List” comic Kathy Griffin, one needs no questions. Just turn on the recorder and let her speak. In fact, she wants to be sure the recorder is on. → Read More

Chantilly Farm bluegrass festival celebrates 5 years, Crooked Road designation

Chantilly Farm is celebrating five years of its bluegrass festival by adding a day to the schedule and teaming up with the Crooked Road. → Read More

Aspiring chefs deliver a tasty final exam downtown

11 students from a Culinary Institute at Virginia Western class handed out fresh bakes baguettes on Monday → Read More


Typically, a Carolina Chocolate Drops show has so many moving parts that it is difficult to focus on just one person. But it was always obvious that singer and multi-instrumentalist Rhiannon Giddens has a world class voice. → Read More