Radio tours are a great way for artists to promote their music. Especially when they are new artists, promoting a new song, which happens to be getting air play all over the place. But what makes those radio tours even nicer, is when the stations involved put the artists out their for their fans to see, hear, meet, and enjoy. That’s what WXBQ did on Friday night when Miss Willie Brown came to town.
It was much more than a ‘put them in the studio and let them talk to our deejays on the air’ visit to our town. And, we definitely got more than a on-air acoustic verse or two of their new single “You’re All That Matters to Me.” We got a show! And it was a great show. Steele Creek Park in Bristol is the perfect setting for any outdoor concert. It’s a pavilion, by a lake, complete with ducks and geese, an occasional passing fishing boat, trees, benches, and last night – that setting included perfect weather! We’ve seen artists here in the past such as Jason Michael Carroll, Jerrod Neimann, Ashton Shepherd, and many others. And, thanks to the folks at WXBQ Radio, and the City of Bristol, these shows are free and open to anyone. I am thrilled that we can now ad Miss Willie Brown to the list of artists we have seen at Steele Creek Park.
Now, let me tell you all about Miss Willie Brown. Some of you may not know, but when you go to see Miss Willie Brown, you are not going to see HER. You are going to see THEM. And they are Kasey (right above) and Amanda (left above). They are singers and songwriters, and best friends who met while working in the same barbecue restaurant in Los Angeles. Amanda is from West Virginia. Kasey is from Texas. Kasey was actually in LA working an acting career, their bio tells us that while Amanda was skeptical about collaborative writing (having attempted it in Nashville), something with she and Kasey ‘clicked immediately.’ Their first night writing together produced four songs.
“When we first got together,” says Amanda, “she could write all these words and stories, and I could write a melody and a chorus—I was solid in getting to the point of the song. But our weaknesses got stronger from being together.” “Amanda can write music that sounds like what I’m saying,” says Kasey, describing the pair’s chemistry, “and I can write words that sound like her music.”
Their song “Mad Dog” was placed on Lifetime’s Army Wives, and the duo became the first unsigned band ever to play on Jimmy Kimmel Live. After that appearance, they signed with A&M/Octone, as the labels first country act.
These are two beautiful, talented women, with great harmonies, a lot of energy, fantastic stage presence, and a rather unusual band name. But there’s a reason why they are called Miss Willie Brown. The girls told me that sang a song called “Big Willie Brown.” Someone at the barbecue restaurant where they worked suggested Miss Willie Brown for the band name. And, they said since their last names are Watkins and Buckley, Those initials, along with the word “Miss” in front of it– just worked out well. When you visit their web page, or look at posters they autograph for fans at shows, you will notice the MWB is even more prominently displayed than the words Miss Willie Brown.
After putting on a fantastic show, which included Kasey dancing both on stage, and off, with some of the children from the audience-they were still kind enough to hang around, sign autographs, do the picture thing with fans, and even answer a few questions for me. I appreciated the time they gave all of us, considering they had to be on a plane at 6 a.m. this morning. Those of you who have been reading Country’s Chatter for the past 4-1/2 years know that I’m not going to stick with the ‘where are you going next” and “when is your new single coming out” kind of questions. I want to know more about them, and I think their fans do, too. So, here is what they had to say.They told me this radio tour has taken them to Tampa, Seattle, Portland, L.A., Milwaukee, Santa Fe, Austin, Madison, Oklahoma City, Philadelphia, Asheville, Bristol, and that was just a few of the places these girls have gotten to visit since this first single hit radio. Kasey said her favorite movie is ‘True Romance’. Ashley had to think about her favorite book, but said it would be “anything health or medical”, then selected Natural Health. Kasey’s favorite color is blue. Amanda’s favorite color is Red. And as for food… I don’t think Amanda answered that one – but as for Kasey, she went the unhealthy food route, and told me her favorite foods are French fries, bacon, and ‘anything salty.’ They don’t have any pets, but both said that they love animals. And Amanda is hoping to be able to get a dog soon. One of the girls said they might ‘break the rules’ and bring the dog on the road. You certainly wouldn’t be the first. Jake Owen and Dierks Bently rarely travel without their pets.
Whenever I talk to artists, I like to ask them what they want to say to their fans. Amanda and Kasey both sent this message to all of you: “We love you, please come to our shows. Please come and support us. We love playing live and want you to come out and have a good time. Party with us. Thanks for all of your support.”
Ryan Hass accompanied the duo on guitar, and they all worked well together. But after seeing them working with one lone guitarist, I am really anxious to see them return to our area with a full band. The music is great, the performance skills amazing, and the entire show was a musical event everyone in the audience enjoyed and appreciated. I think to say the audience members were in the age range of 2 to 82 would be fairly accurate.
I have got to get my day started. I hoe you all enjoy your Saturday! More later!