Singer-songwriter James Taylor, who was born in Boston, MA, but grew up in North Carolina, has set up five free benefit mini-concerts for Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama in the Tar Heel State.

On October 19, Sweet Baby James will perform at Ovens Auditorium in Charlotte at 2 p.m. and at Martin Luther King Jr. Park in Asheville later that night. On October 20, Taylor has booked Fetzer Files at UNC-Chappel Hill in Chappel Hill for a 5 p.m. show. He will continue his schedule October 21 with an early show at NC Moore Square in Raleigh, followed that night with a show at Greenfield Lake Park Amphitheater in Wilmington.

Tickets for each concert event will be handed out at distribution centers across the state. Admission passes for the October 19 show at Ovens Auditorium will be distributed today (October 17). Passes for the later October 19 performance in Asheville will be available October 17-18. Tickets for the October 20 and October 21 morning concert will be handed out on October 17-18 and the day of the event. Passes for the later October 21 show will be available October 17 and October 20 only.

Taylor will encourage Obama supporters to get out and vote early in the state’s one-stop voting, which begins on October 23. North Carolina is a swing state that has not voted for a Democratic presidential candidate since 1976.

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One of Taylor’s first memorable songs was “Carolina on My Mind” from his 1968 self-titled album. His most recent album “Covers” was released a few weeks ago.

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