What: The Carllile Family
When: Sunday, April 30th, 6 pm Doors
Where: 800 East Studios (800 East Avenue NE,
Atlanta, GA 30312
off North Highland Avenue, between Freedom
Parkway and Randolph
Cost: $25 for seated, $18 for standing. All ages
welcome. Tickets available at
Carpooling is encouraged.
Light food and beverages will be available for cash.
“Four Lady Thumbs: A Musical Evening with Three
Generations of Carllile Women: Virginia, Kathy, Tammy and Calli”
When Virginia, Tammy, Kathy and Calli take the
stage at 800 East Studios it will be a the first time that the late Thumbs
Carllile’s wife, daughters, and granddaughter have shared the spotlight.
Thumbs was a legendary guitar player known for his unique style. His
legacy, however, will not overshadow the talent of these women.
Virginia, 74, was already a successful vocalist
when she met Thumbs in Germany in 1955. Coming from a strong blues and old
country background, she is best known for her single Indian Boy/Indian
Girl This event will be her first stage appearance since 1987.
Virginia¹s daughters, Tammy and Kathy, remember
a childhood filled with music. Both followed their parents’ lead and chose
careers in music. Tammy sang in the Cowboy Boogie Band in Las Vegas, and
won Nashville’s Hall of Fame singing competition. She sang vocal tracks on
albums with her dad and sang a duet with Michael Parks.
Kathy a devotee of Muscle Shoals blues was
once winner of The Gong Show. She performed on the blues portion of the
Monterey Jazz Festival, and had a hit song in the 1980s called Stay Until
the Rain Stops. Atlantans will remember her as the lead vocalist for her
band, Kathy Carllile & Tabasco.
“My father was always in the house playing,”
Tammy remembers. “We didn’t realize we were being influenced, but we
adapted quite a musical ear early on. Mom and Dad had us listening to
everything from Sarah Vaughn and Dinah Washington to old country. Dad
always said to learn every style there is, because you never know what
style will be making money.”
Calli, 28, is establishing her reputation as one
of Atlanta¹s finest contemporary jazz/blues vocalists. She is frequent
backing vocalist for respected Atlanta songstress and Rock Star:INXS
finalist, Heather Luttrell.
On April 30, the four women will sing a variety
of favorites some accompanying the other with harmonies. Look for songs
as diverse as ZZ Top’s I Need You Tonight, Randy Newman’s Guilty, and
Aretha Franklin’s Skylark. Thanks to studio wizardry, Virginia will also
sing with Thumbs backing her on guitar..
“When my father performed at the Freight Room,
everybody said it was like being in his living room,” Tammy explained.
“That¹s the feeling we want to create. We want a very relaxed night, as if
you had just dropped in for a visit.”
Thumbs Carllile was an innovative guitar player and songwriter. As a
child, his thumbs were too short and fat to make it around the neck of a
guitar, so he began playing it on his lap like a dobro, a style that
eventually earned him the nickname Thumbs. He was discovered by Little
Jimmy Dickens in the 40s, and went on to play with Dickens’ band, Bill
Wimberley’s Rhythm Boys, Les Paul, Red Foley’s Troupe and the Wade Ray
Five. A stint with Roger Miller in 1964 led to a signing with Smash
Records (and eventually Capitol), where he released two albums with
popular songs such as Let It Be Me, Blue Skies and High Noon. In the
1980s, he began playing on Sagebrush Boogie in Atlanta. He moved to the
city officially in 1986, where he was a regular at venues such as the
Freight Room in Decatur and The Point until his death the following year.