A Little Thanks Will Carey You Far

A Little Thanks Will Carey You Far

Carey has figured it out.  Perhaps it’s her years of experience in the
hospitality industry or perhaps it’s just that she’s a first-rate human
being. In any case, this artist understands how it works.  As humble as
she is, she may not even be aware of the fact that she teaches a lesson
by example and grace.
and her husband Joe travel to Nashville from LA twice a year, with her
lead guitar player and band director of 10 years, John McDuffie.  They
come here with a purpose – and though that includes attending
respectively Country Radio Seminar and the CMA Music Festival – there is
so much more to that story.
many, she travels to perform, connect with fans and industry
colleagues, but most of all she is here to thank people.  Thank them
with music.
the midst of all the Country Music Seminar (CRS) interviews and
promotion, Carey has made it a time to acknowledge the people who
surround and support her from afar.  By hosting a luncheon and
performing a preview for them she recognizes each of these
individuals.  Eileen celebrates those who have her back and have helped
to launch and maintain her career.
is a yearly industry event that provides a platform for radio
professionals and artists to connect, learn and support each other. It
is not unusual for acts to host an “invite only” showcase/reception,
hoping that heavy-hitting radio programmers will attend.  The intimacy
of Eileen’s gathering speaks to her savvy business sense.  Held upstairs
at Merchants on Lower Broad, guests were greeted by both the
exceptional restaurant staff and Carey’s band who mingled as lunch
orders were taken. 
band comprised of two Nashville based musicians, Dan Hagen and Brenda
Lewis, along with John McDuffie, could not have more words of praise for
their experiences with, and love of, this artist.  John shares: ”Eileen
is really great to work for.  She takes really good care of us…I’ve
worked with people [for whom] every day is a bad day…But she [Eileen] is
not EVER temperamental.” 
band is equally down-to-earth, positive and exceptionally adept.  The
conversation that fills the small space is simmering with intelligent,
conscientious commentary.  The band had only one rehearsal, new material
included.  They, like so many musicians in this age of the virtual
rehearsal, have mastered the long distance relationship.  It seemed as
if they play together every day. 
After a brief introduction from publicist Susan Collier, they kicked off the party with a cover of The Pretenders Don’t Get Me Wrong with
a twist.  It is an upbeat almost Bluegrass/Country version.  Dan’s
banjo adds flare and finesse to the tune. A self-professed Eighties fan,
Eileen emulates Chrissie Hynde.  John McDuffie guitar solos add country
sound while keeping it rock and roll based.
Next it is an original: In the Air, complete with three part Harmonies in the chorus which are breezy and full to match the lyrics.
“Oh La la love is in the air tonight, dancing under the Paris sky.
Just like you and me in a movie, where dreams come true.” The song creates a nostalgic video in the imagination.**
leads into “Good Bad Girl” an up-tempo, tongue in cheek song complete
with four part harmony. This is when Carey comes alive on stage.  Subtly
theatrical she sings” “I’m salty and I’m sweet…a little bit Tennessee
honey with a little bit of gasoline…I’m a girl you can’t just like…I’m a
good bad girl.”
Eileen’s band closes with: Faith
a song for girls of all ages. The gist, take your attention off the
boys focus on you and be strong. This song has a more an eighties pop
sound, much in the style of another of Eileen’s influences, Katrina
Leskanich (of Katrina and the Waves.)
two for these musicians lands them at Rippy’s, where they perform a
full set.  McDuffie opened with a cover of Elvis Presley’s A Mess Of Blues. 
Eileen’s husband Joe introduced his wife as “The new face of Rippy’s”
as she took the stage.  He also invited the prior act to join them for a
beer. “See we are already family.”  This theme of hosting and thanks is
just a part of their wonderful spirit.
performance at Rippy’s draws an eclectic audience with the unique
Eighties Pop meets Country vibe.  It includes all songs from the private
party along with crowd pleaser: Bottle Your Crazy Up.   The
song gives a little advice we could all take to heart and points to
Carey’s intuitive understanding of good business practice: “Don’t order
the tequila, ‘cause you know how you get, Don’t talk about your ex, you
ain’t over him yet…Just for tonight bottle your crazy up.”
for Eileen’s return to Nashville in June for CMA Music Festival.  Until
then, check out her website http://www.eileencarey.com
 by K.W. Poole ©2017 for WMMW in cooperation with Country Music News International

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