One of the many reasons I love Franklin is the music! There’s music on street corners – music at huge venues – heck, there’s the Grand Ole Opry just up the road! You’ve just gotta love the music of Franklin!
There’s music galore and something for everyone and last night I was in the presence of some super talented, dedicated, amazing musicians and it all happened upstairs at The Frothy Monkey, one of our local coffeehouses with wine and beer and serving up locally grown fare. It’s one of my favorite meeting places.
A typical Thursday night was spent with sweet friends listening to the talented husband and wife team, Rodeo & Juliet and a special appearance by The Henningsens. Amazing! There was so much talent in that small room. You see I live in a place that is just packed full of talent and sometimes singing and performing is just a side job from these singer/songwriters who are known for their incredible musical talent.
Rodeo (Chris Harris) and his lovely lady, Juliet (Janet Lee) have been together for over 30 years and making the sweetest music. They’re a fine-tuned machine who serenade the audience with perfect harmonies. He’s a Texan and she’s a Yankee but together they make beautiful music.
Chris has been writing, producing, and singing with the likes of Amy Grant, CeCe Winans, Loretta Lynn, Kristen Chenowith just to name a few and his commercial jingles are well known in most households. Rodeo & Juliet have performed all over the USA but last night I was treated to just some of their magic. The back up band was pretty incredible themselves with Jess Parkins on pedal steel, (I just love the sound of the pedal steel guitar), Ronnie Brooks on guitar, Matt Pierson on bass and Ken Lewis on drums. These guys aren’t household names to you and me, but ask around the music industry and it’s a whole other story.
A guest performance by The Henningsens took this small venue concert to another level as this family trio blew the socks off all of us. Dad, Brian (bass, guitar and vocals) is also father of 10 including his eldest son Aaron (guitar and vocals) and daughter Clara(lead vocals and guitar) are signed with Arista and bring a fresh, pure sound to the music scene. You can read all about them here because the bio and credentials are long and impressive!
I have no idea how petite Clara belts out these songs but her voice is that of an angel! I fell in love with a new song they’ve recently written and love, Too Rodeo for the Radio and was told that my long time friend, Dan Dugmore, pedal steel guitar player extraordinaire performed on the demo.
When Rodeo & Juliet returned to finish out they show they did a tribute to Phil Everly and ended with an awesome rendition of Rollin in My Sweet Baby’s Arms. Leon Russell would have loved it!
Want to know what I love the most about these small venue performances? You have an opportunity to see them – really see the humanness about them. You see how they treat each other and their audience. You see them with their families and their friends and you feel this very special connection because they’re real. Maybe it’s a country thing, but for me…it sure feels genuine and authentic.
All in all it was a perfect Franklin evening. I’m going to go out on a limb here and recommend that you follow both Rodeo & Juliet and The Henningsens because not only is their music terrific, but they put on a really wonderful show that you won’t want to miss.
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