Posted tagged ‘Guns N Roses’

Artist Spotlight: Toree McGee

May 25, 2016

My 3 year old is currently in her room. Her music is turned up really loud and she’s dancing around to California Gurls by Katy Perry (yeah, I know. What’s up with that, right?).

But the song got me back to thinking about doing another spotlight on a California grown country artist. Or in this case, a “California Girl”. Let me introduce you to Toree McGee.

Toree2

Gifted with a rafter-reaching soprano range and a voice that brings out a true grit and fire, McGee describes her music as a blend of “Woodstock rock ‘n’ roll, and  sparkly country.” Interesting mix, but you’ll soon understand where she gets it from and why it works!

First a little background.

McGee’s grandparents were part of a traveling gospel quartet, and her father was a singer in what can only be described as a “garage rock band”. Her father can be credited with giving McGee her love of classic rock and her passion for music, while her mother gravitated toward classic country.

Not surprising that I enjoy her live shows (I’ve probably caught here 5-6 times now) with my professed love for classic rock and country music.

McGee has some of the strongest vocals I’ve heard in a long time. Her musical style embodies elements of her influences, ranging from the sounds of The Judds and LeAnn Rimes, to  Guns N’ Roses and Aerosmith. She also embodies the vocals of Janis Joplin.

In her own words:

“I was a really big fan of Janis Joplin for a long time. I loved her uniqueness and how you could feel her emotion when she sang. But the whole rock ‘n’ roll kind of jagged edge thing wasn’t really me all the way. I always had a sunshiny personality, and I wasn’t as hardened as the rock scene was. Country music always made me happy, and everything always brought me back to that.”

McGee had her first performance as an opening act with a 30 minute set for country music superstar, Clay Walker in San Jose at the Rodeo Club, followed by another opening slot for one of my favorites: A Thousand Horses.

While she throws a lot of great cover songs into her typical setlist, McGee has a few of her own including “Run Right Back to You” and her first single, “Amen”.

Amen

“Amen”, gained airplay on Northern California radio stations and climbed to the #1 slot on 95.3 KRTY’s ‘Hot 9 @ 9’ segment. It has also gained the attention of Sirius/XM radio, as well as local news stations. The aforementioned “Amen” was released on March 31, 2015 and her full EP was officially released in October 2015. I’ve got it. You should too!

In speaking of her EP, McGee says:

“I wanted to blend my love of hard rock and country together. I have this heavy-hitting, gravelly tone I can get in my voice, and I didn’t want to lose that side of me that played in bars and grew up in bars. But country has always been my favorite genre of music. That’s where I want to be, but I want to bring a bit of that old style of rock with me.”

I mentioned her live sets earlier. Now besides her own songs, she also loves to fill her set lists with a few cover songs. Here’s just a sample of a few that I enjoy:

My Church

Girl Crush

Someone Like You

Piece of my Heart

Stay

Son of a Preacher Man

But what I enjoy the most about McGee, is her happy go lucky personality and her passion for life and her music. Nothing sums this up better than the moment she first heard herself on the radio when Randy Jones played “Amen” for the first time on KRTY. This is what it’s all about!

If you haven’t checked her out before, do so now. Also, make sure you keep up with her via her website or follow her on Twitter at @ToreeMcGee and Facebook for her latest news and concert schedule.

Don’t forget to check out her music on iTunes, Amazon and Google Play.

So what did I miss? Have you seen Toree McGee live? What do you think of her? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Concert Review: Carrie Underwood, July 26, 2008

July 30, 2008

Ok. It’s my hope and goal that I will stop drooling by the end of this review of last nights Carrie Underwood concert.

Carrie and the Band

Carrie and the Band

First of all, I must thank my sister in law Katie and her boyfriend Shaun for allowing me to go to this show at Konocti Harbor. Unfortunately, they were not able to attend with the tickets that they won from Ken & Corey on 95.7 The Wolf so I made the 2 1/2 hour journey to Clearlake instead.

The night began with up and coming singer Fisher Stevenson of Big Machine Records (Taylor Swift). Although he played a short set, of which most songs were ballads, the man has potential. He has a great voice and an equally great back up band. Loved the songs “On Loan”, “Lay Your Love Down” and “Learning To Live Without You”. It was also nice that his wife and baby were able to attend the show. He said that he lives in Davis so right on!

So Small

So Small

Following the opening act, it was time for Ms. Carrie Underwood. Pardon me as I wipe the drool from my chin once again.

It’s been a couple years since she came on the scene winning American Idol and she has taken the country music scene by storm! Last night proved that she has the talent and the voice to dominate the country charts for years to come. She has a stage presence which brings the crowd to life and did not let us down.

The set list included a mix of her classic hits as well as a few new tracks. The audience was definitely into the show and was singing along with every word (especially the four pre-teen girls in front of us who were dressed in Carrie Underwood clothes head to toe).

Songs during the set included: Wasted, Twisted, All-American Girl, So Small, Jesus Take the Wheel, Last Name and a great rendition of Don’t Forget to Remember Me.

Carrie had some fun with the audience: “If you feel like singing – sing,” she told the crowd of over 4,000. “If you feel like dancing – dance. And if you feel like kissing the person beside you just make sure it’s OK with them first”.

Before He Cheats

Before He Cheats

It seemed like everything was going right for the crowd, and for Carrie. And then she swallowed a bug. I’ll admit, this is the first time I have seen this happen during a show. She seemed pretty grossed out by the whole thing, but she laughed and had a good time with it. A fan even pointed out to her that it was a firefly, not just a bug. Only in Lake County!

For the encore, Carrie and her band performed a great rendition of Guns N Roses’ Paradise City. This may have been the highlight of the night as the music was loud and the crowd was even louder. The night concluded with crowd favorite “Before He Cheats”. I would be willing to bet that everyone in attendance was singing every word to this song.

Overall, a great show! I had never seen Carrie in concert before but I would love to go again. The scenery was beautiful with the amphitheater located right on the shores of Clearlake. The only thing more beautiful than the sunset over the lake would probably be Carrie herself. Wow! The word beautiful is hardly an accurate description!