Keegan Luckey-Smith

As a child I attended Livestock auctions on a regular basis, my family owns a small farm in Western North Carolinian with a virility of animals ranging from chickens to beef cattle. Therefore, we would often make trips to acquire or sell animals, this journey would bring us to the Cagle Family Livestock auction located in the out skirts of Waynesville, near the Walmart (which is not an uncommon way of describing location, when the location in question is anywhere close to a Walmart). This action house stands out in my mind not only for my personal experience, but because it represents a small community market (unlike the extremely large Canton livestock market) that is not only a gathering place for the community, but also a unique soundscape.

Action houses offer an incredibly diverse sound scape, with noises ranging from animal sounds to local vernacular phrases being used in conversation. And although there could be an argument made for the musicality of any of these sounds, the place where it really stood out to me is the sound produced by the auctioneers. Hearing this sound is probably the first time I noticed rhythm in a place other then the traditional idea of music, the rhythm in the way the auctioneer conveys price always made me want to bid just to be a participant in this process.

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