Formed in the winter of 2013, Unaka Prong, the genre-bending, improvisational sextet from Boone, NC began writing and performing songs that explore the fringes of individual member influences. For the last four years, Unaka Prong has been tirelessly performing around the region and further building their repertoire. Songs and compositions including tasteful elements of southern rock, folk, funk, R&B, jazz fusion, reggae, and the spaces in-between. The band takes an experimental approach to many of their songs in the studio and during live performances by the means of an expressive, conversational atmosphere between instruments that creates a hearty blend of genres and styles that is sure to appeal to many different ears.
The name, Unaka Prong, comes from the Unaka mountain range that encompasses most of the Appalachians bordering the NC/TN border. The words, Unaka Prong, translate litterally into Cherokee as "white haze," symbolizing the prominent Great Smoky Mountains region of NC and TN.
Through App State's Jazz program and coincidental jam sessions around Boone, Mike Welsh, John Hargett, Daniel Stevenson, Jonathon Sale, Chris Pope, and Nic Pressley began joining songwriting forces and experimenting respective styles as what is now known as Unaka Prong.
“...a tight-knit live band.”
-Dolan Reynolds, The Poke Around
"I am so into this band from Boone, North Carolina! Their album, Margot, easily made my top ten of regional faves for 2016. Proggy, jazzy, and all-around fabulous."
-WNCW 88.7's "Local Color" via Tumblr
“A new band named Unaka Prong with a high quality first output brings us an entertaining mix of styles...Funky grooves with guitar, trumpet and dirty organ? It works good here and the band has rich talent for cool rhythms and fine interaction...The sound is rich and vivid and close to a live-sound.”- Peter Funke via “WeekendProg”
"A fascinating journey through funky, bluesy, jazzy, yet progressive rock music from Boone, North Carolina. Trumpeter Nic Pressley is so fun to listen to! And I love how the rest of the instruments are recorded to sound as if you are among them, on stage. Awesome! Chris Pope's vintage keyboards are gorgeous and always up front and center. The vocals are awesome and hilarious in a kind of Robert Wyatt way. The dual guitars of Mike Welsh and Daniel Stevenson are so nicely constructed--as if Paul Weller was playing with Radiohead or . . . Paul Weller! The drums are recorded so warmly that you might as well be sitting in drummer John Hargett's lap."
-BrufordFreak via Progarchives.com
“Adult Contemporary” is an adventure to listen too, and there is never a dull moment. The musicianship is incredibly tight, showcasing the true, raw talent each band member possesses. When all of the genres and individual influences are working together, it’s something special....People often associate jam bands with four-hour set lists and overly long guitar solos, but a local band proves on its sophomore album that jams become much more interesting when you infuse elements of jazz, rock, reggae, funk — and well — just about everything you can imagine."
-Brian Miller, The Mountain Times
John Hargett // Drums and Vocals
Chris Pope // Keyboards
Daniel Stevenson // Guitar and Vocals
Mike Welsh // Guitar
Nic Pressley // Trumpet and Vocals
Jonathon Sale // Bass Guitar and Vocals