Young musicians step into the bright lights

Published 11:00 pm Monday, January 14, 2013

Four talented young singer/musicians performed at studio 116 in Brundidge Saturday night. From left, Kate Deal, Kathlene Deal, Dakota Anderson and Kathy Stockstill.

For four Pike County young singer/musicians, Saturday night was an opportunity to step into the bright lights, if not the big city.

Kathleen Deal, Kate Deal, Dakota Anderson and Kathy Stockstill took the stage at studio 116 in downtown Brundidge and “highly impressed” an appreciative audience.

Tammy Powell, retired Pike County Extension coordinator, is familiar with the Deal sisters and Anderson through their involvement in 4-H. Even so, she was impressed with their musical talents.

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“I knew they could all play and sing but I didn’t have any idea how really good they are,” Powell said. “Kathy Stockstill was after my time with 4-H but I was equally impressed with her. Lenny Trawick, their guitar teacher, has done a great job with these young people and others as well.”

Powell said she admires what Chris Rich and his wife, Sara Dismukes, studio 116 owners, are doing in providing opportunities for young people to showcase their talents.

“There are not many venues in small communities where young people have opportunities to perform, especially, in settings like studio 116,” Powell said. “It is so wonderful to see young people involved in music and sharing their talents. I hope that the community will continue to encourage and support our young people in the arts.”

Although studio 116 was not the first performance venue for the young singer/musicians, it has the relaxed, coffee shop atmosphere that is popular among the younger people as well as people of all ages.

Kathleen Deal said the four musicians, who performed individually and as a group Saturday night, practice their music separately but get together often to play.

“I’ve been playing since I was nine years and I’m almost 13,” Deal said. “The music that I’m playing now is different from the music I used to play. My parents liked country music, so I grew up liking country music but I kept listening and found what I like and that’s what I’m playing now – jazz and rock music, and a little country. When you live around here, you’ve got to play a bit of country.”

Deal said auto-tunes are popular in today’s music industry and are kind of cheat sheets for singers.

“If you can’t really sing, auto-tunes makes it sound like you can,” she said. “We like singing at places like studio 116 and M’Niche in Ramer and we really sing.”

Deal said young people are finding their way into the kind of music they like and want to play and sing.

She said Trawick teaches his students guitar but the vocals they do are what they listen and then perform.

The Deal sisters are more “into” jazz and rock. Stockstill seems to prefer country and Anderson plays Eric Clapton and Peter Frampton and The Eagles.

“Dakota likes rock music but he also plays the classical guitar,” Deal said. “We play all kinds of music. It’s all good music and we love playing at studio 116. It has a great atmosphere and we feel like real singers. We thank Chris and Sara for this absolute great place to play our music.”