C-VILLE Writers



Son Little arrives with songs from his soon-to-be-released album aloha. Publicity image.

ARTS Pick: Son Little

Son salutation: R&B soul musician Son Little has an eclectic body of work that includes contributions to recordings by The Roots, RJD2, and Portugal. The Man. He cites Paul McCartney, Kendrick Lamar, American indie act Grizzly Bear, and Swedish electronic band Little Dragon as early influences, and earned his biggest props to date for his […]

Author Roxane Gay comes to Charlottesville as the keynote speaker for the 2020 Community MLK Celebration.  Image: Jay Grabiec

ARTS Pick: Roxane Gay

Rox our world: Roxane Gay can write with both authenticity and wit about Italian restaurants, feminism, body image, racism, rape culture, gun control, and other cultural hot buttons. She’s become internationally recognized for her to-the-point social criticism, and in 2019 Playboy called her one of the most important and accessible cultural commentators of our time. […]

The Joe Policastro Trio brings its cinematic style to WTJU and Fellini's on Friday night. Publicity image.

ARTS Pick: Joe Policastro Trio

Screen team: Based on its latest material, you could call the Joe Policastro Trio dramatic. The alt-jazz outfit’s recent recordings include the West Side Story suite, as well as Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah,” “Nadia’s Theme (From ‘The Young and the Restless’),” “Twin Peaks’” theme, Blade Runner’s love theme, and many other well-known TV and screen epics. […]

Blackalicious celebrates the 20th anniversary of Nia at the Southern on Thursday. Publicity image.

ARTS Pick: Blackalicious

Back on the beats: When Blackalicious’ first album, Nia, was released in 1999, critics praised the duo for their rap skills, production style, and ability to push hip-hop in a new direction. Following up with the equally compelling Blazing Arrow (2002) and The Craft (2005), Chief Xcel and Gift of Gab took 10 years to […]

Luchadora makes once in a Blue Moon acoustic appearance on Friday. Publicity photo.

ARTS Pick: Luchadora

Swimming in it: Describing themselves as “the world heavyweight champions of Appalachian surf” the landlocked members of Luchadora play hard with a wink and a nod. This appearance finds Will Rourk (guitar/banjo), Will Tanner (bass/guitar), Tiernan Rourk (accordian), Dave Hersman (trumpet), and “crazy long-armed drummer” Jason Bennett turning their high-energy sound into a lively acoustic […]

Riley Moore is at the Twisted Branch Tea Bazaar on Wednesday. Publicity photo.

ARTS Pick: Riley Moore

Walking the talk: Global culture and music are the passions that drive songwriter Riley Moore’s blossoming career. After traveling the world and growing the requisite folksinger beard, Moore settled in Nashville where he lives on a sailboat. A love of the planet moved him to establish himself as a walking, touring musician, and in 2015 […]

A launch party for Monticello Wine Company, Afton Mountain Vineyards’ second label, takes place Thursday evening, January 16, at Champion Grill in Stonefield. Photo: Courtesy Monticello Wine Co.

All in the family: The Smiths strike again!

Afton Mountain Vineyards announced a second label this week: Monticello Wine Company. Founded as a winemaking cooperative in Charlottesville in 1873, the historic brand became the largest winery in the South before it shut down with the onset of Prohibition in Virginia, in 1916. Michael Macfarlan, the winemaker at Glass House Winery, and his brother, […]

Kick off your weekend with The Legwarmers on Friday at the Jefferson. Publicity image.

ARTS Pick: Legwarmers

Get down on it: Whether you were of age to enjoy the ’80s chart-toppers at the time or just think they are totally rad, it’s easy to fall into the groove at a Legwarmers show. Since 2001, Gordon Gartrell, Cru Jones, Chet Reno, Lavaar Huxtable, Roxanne Rio, Captain Morgan Pondo, and Clarence McFly have been […]

Ronnie “iRon Lion” Brandon and special guest Davina Jackson perform on Saturday to welcome in Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Reggae and Poetry

Dream date: In celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Chicago-born and Virginia-raised human rights activist Ronnie “iRon Lion” Brandon hosts a reggae and poetry showcase that begins by opening up the mic to anyone who wants to express their appreciation for King. Brandon will recite King’s historic “I Have A Dream” speech, and perform […]

It’s all-you-can-eat time again at Splendora’s. Photo: Andrea Hubbell

Out & about: Food, fun, and philanthropy

Ready to take a breather after the holiday bustle? Sorry—no rest for the weary. Besides, you’ll feel better if you get up and go, go, go with so many good things on tap. That’s alotta gelato Forget resolutions, there’s endless gelato to be had. Continuing a tradition started in 2007, Splendora’s Gelato offers all you […]

Photo: Skyclad Aerial

We love Charlottesville, but…

Building a better city New Year’s is a time for resolutions, but this year, we decided to focus our attention on city improvements, not self-improvement. So we asked a bunch of community leaders about their hopes for Charlottesville (and added a few of our own). Here’s to a new year, a new decade, and new […]

See a screening of composer Alban Berg's apocalyptic opera "Wozzeck" at The Paramount Theater Saturday, January 11. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Wozzeck

Art of war: Austrian composer Alban Berg drew inspiration for his apocalyptic opera Wozzeck (Met Live in HD broadcast), when he attended a production of the drama Woyzeck, a German play left incomplete by Georg Büchner at his death. Berg constructed his libretto for the production while on leave from his regiment in World War […]

The Gina Furtado Project is at The Prism Coffeehouse this week. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: The Gina Furtado Project

Take your pick: Mom, songwriter, singer, and “absurdly talented” banjo player (according to Bluegrass Today), Gina Furtado has two IBMA Banjo Player of the Year nominations to her credit. With the new album I Hope You Have A Good Life, she expands on her versatility with the Gina Furtado Project, playing original material that goes […]

Frank Vignola's Hot Jazz Trio is at The Front Porch this week. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Frank Vignola’s Hot Jazz Trio

Hot list: When Les Paul names a guitarist to his Five Most Admired Guitarists List (Wall Street Journal, September 2007) you’d think that person would be easily recognized. But despite leading bands for decades, Frank Vignola has maintained a career slightly outside the spotlight by supporting other very recognizable names, including Ringo Starr, Madonna, Donald […]

Nick Nace plays Blue Moon Diner this Thursday, January 9. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: Nick Nace

Playing it off: If things had gone according to plan, you’d know Nick Nace for his acting work. A self-proclaimed drama kid, Nace followed his dreams to New York City to attend acting school, and spent his spare time playing guitar. Soon enough, he says that cheap guitar was guiding him towards the tunes, and […]

Neo-traditional string band The Wildmans plays The Prism Coffeehouse series January 3. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: The Wildmans

Big time traditions: The small town of Floyd, Virginia—its population was 425 in the last census—has become so synonymous with the Appalachian mountain music tradition that visitors often outnumber the residents. The latest to emerge from the robust tiny scene is neo-traditional string band The Wildmans, a fledgling group of top-notch players that includes Aila […]

Sir Kenneth Branagh and Dame Judi Dench star in The Winter’s Tale,  to be broadcast at The Paramount Theater Friday, January 3. Publicity photo

ARTS Pick: The Winter’s Tale

Kingdom of frenemies: Sir Kenneth Branagh and Dame Judi Dench star in The Winter’s Tale, Shakespeare’s tragicomedy in which King Leontes appears to have everything, but his jealousy sets in motion a series of tragic consequences. Originally broadcast in November 2015, the play is co-directed by Rob Ashford and Branagh, and is being re-screened thanks […]

“The Dell” public basketball courts will be demolished and replaced with the Contemplative Commons by fall 2023.
Photo: Skyclad Aerial

Fond (and not so) farewells, statue drama, and more

Priorities Weeks after self-appointed Confederate monument defenders began monitoring downtown parks, city police arrested two Charlottesville residents for allegedly vandalizing the Stonewall Jackson statue in Court Square in the wee hours of the morning of December 19. Nic McCarthy-Rivera and former C-VILLE writer Jesse Tobias Beard have been charged with misdemeanor trespassing and felony vandalism. […]

Bruce Holsinger's The Gifted school is just one of many titles Charlottesville-area authors released this year.

Write here: A year in books from Charlottesville authors

It was a prolific year for local authors. Popular favorites like Rita Mae Brown, John Grisham, and Ann Beattie added new titles to their extensive catalogs. Several UVA professors published in-depth explorations of their expertise—from tracing the history of Jefferson’s university, to defining the basis of a scientific claim, to analyzing politics’ impact on the […]

In March, the long-anticipated $2 million skate park officially opened in McIntire Park.
Photo: Tristan Williams

Photo finish

From a new skate park to a vineyard pup, here are a few images that capture the year that was. (Click photos to enlarge).   In May, we wondered if the city’s ubiquitous electric scooters were a handy transit alternative or a public nuisance. Photo: Eze Amos   In June, Will Brockenbrough explained how his […]

UVA’s historic basketball win was, not suprisingly, our most picked-up print issue of the year. Kyle Guy jumped for joy when the team won its first national championship by defeating Texas Tech 85-77, in an overtime thriller.
Photo: Jerry Holt

Our back pages: What you read this year

We looked back on the year and (with the help of Google Analytics) our most-read stories online. The takeaway? Our readers care about marijuana, Confederate statues, and food—with a side of basketball victory. Here’s a rundown of our most-popular stories from 2019: 1. Pipe dreams: Virginia moves (slowly) towards marijuana reform This piece, by longtime […]