Recently I was treated to a viewing of the new film Beer Ya’ll by Curt and Will Arledge. The film’s motto is “Beer. Rock & Roll. North Carolina” (trust me, this describes it very effectively) and details the July 2008 trip seven friends made across North Carolina to tour 27 microbreweries and brewpubs, ranging from the mountains to the coast in a seat-less cargo van. “Beer Y’all follows their nine days of hanging out with brewers, partying at rock shows, and drinking many, many beers as they celebrate friendship, music, and a Southern microbrewing explosion,” their website states. But fortunately for those interested in craft-brewing, there is quite a bit more “meat on the bone” with regard to the way this film portrays the cultural aspects of the fine art of brewing beer, and in addition to learning a lot, those who view this film stand to gain a bit of worldly perspective that has been growing in the mountains and foothills of NC for the last few decades.
In addition to screenings taking place across North Carolina this summer (2009), the film is also available on DVD for purchase at the film’s site. Indeed, North Carolina is becoming a hub for craft breweries, and this film manages to illustrate this eloquently through a variety of interviews with, arguably, some of the most cultured members of the “alcohol elite” in operation today. Brilliantly, the brothers Curt and Will Arledge intermix the sophisticated elements of modern craft brewery with rock and roll, modern folk, Bluegrass, and other styles of music all performed by musicians indigenous to the state of NC (including two bands I perform with, Runners of the Green Laurel and Blackhook).
Beer Ya’ll provides a cultured, intimate view of the emerging craft brewing scene in the Old North State, all the while providing colorful tunes and hilarious commentary. For more information about the film, visit Beer Ya’ll‘s official website.