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Underwater Ghost Towns of North Georgia

by Lisa Russell

Book Description

Set List begins in 1970, when Blanchard Shankles and John Covey come together and start making music in a rock and roll band named Skyye. They were two young men from Sequoyah, Georgia, with limited prospects and big dreams, who were joined in their quest for fame and fortune by their friends Ford Man Cooper, Chicken Raines, Jimbo Tant, Tucker McFry, and Simpson Taggart. These fledgling musicians set out upon a musical voyage that spanned four decades, fifty states, and uncounted miles as they pursued the elusive success that was always just one song ahead of them.

Along the way the band played bars and clubs, carnivals and dances, dives and festivals, and together through good times and bad, sickness and health, romance, marriage, divorce, birth, and death, they each built two lives: the one out under the lights that they were drawn to like moths to a flame, and the one they came back to when the music stopped and the crowds went home.

The story alternates between present-day North Georgia and the 1970s and is the story of a bar band as told primarily through the eyes of its lead guitar player, Blanchard Shankles, and its bass player, John Covey. Each chapter is built around an original song in the band's repertoire plus an iconic song from the archives of rock and roll, and together these songs and these chapters form the set list of the band members' lives.

About the Author

A resident of Rome, Raymond L. Atkins teaches English at Georgia Northwestern Technical College and Creative Writing at Reinhardt University. He is the author of four award-winning novels: The Front Porch Prophet, Sorrow Wood, Camp Redemption, and Sweetwater Blues. South of the Etowah, his first creative nonfiction book, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. In 2017, Atkins was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Georgia Writers Association.

Set List

by Raymond Atkins

Book Description


North Georgia has more than forty lakes, and not one is natural. The state's controversial decision to dam the region's rivers for power and water supply changed the landscape forever. Lost communities, forgotten crossroads, dissolving racetracks and even entire towns disappeared, with remnants occasionally peeking up from the depths during times of extreme drought. The creation of Lake Lanier displaced more than seven hundred families. During the construction of Lake Chatuge, busloads of schoolboys were brought in to help disinter graves for the community's cemetery relocation. Contractors clearing land for the development of Lake Hartwell met with seventy-eight-year-old Eliza Brock wielding a shotgun and warning the men off her property. Lisa Russell dives into the history hidden beneath North Georgia's lakes.


About the Author

Lisa Russell  is a member of the Society for Georgia Archaeology, Bartow History Museum and Etowah Valley Historical Society. She earned her masters degree in professional writing from Kennesaw State University. When Lisa is not teaching at Georgia Northwestern Technical College or Kennesaw State University, she can be found exploring North Georgia through a micro-historic lens.


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