Lebanon American Legion Bar Presents: Karen Waldrup, DJ Josh Boggs, Dixie Jade & Gracia Harrison from the Voice
Gracia Harrison, Dixie Jade, DJ Josh Boggs
2538 Evergreen Pwky
Lebanon, MO, 65536
Doors 7:00 PM / Show 8:00 PM
This event is 18 and over
Watch & Listen
New Orleans native, Karen Waldrup is a full time touring country artist. Although she loves writing and working in the studio, live performances are her passion.
Waldrup prides herself on being a touring act. For the last several years, Waldrup has been touring and sharing the stage with artists such as Sara Evans, Rodney Atkins, Gloriana, Josh Thompson, John Michael Montgomery, Terri Clark, Trick Pony & Clay Walker. In addition to playing all over the US, she has also traveled to Ireland, Belize, Switzerland, Honduras and Guatemala to perform. Her new EP 'Getaway' is an electrifying project that truly captures her love for traveling and takes the listener on a musical journey of their own.
She appeared on Bravo TV's 'Platinum Hit' with host Jewel & Kara Diaguardi and has music featured on Bravo TV's reality series My Fab 40. Sony/RED & Sky Records released Karen's single 'Sharing the Night Together' in 2014 and her new single & video 'Trashy Crashed the Party' premiered on CMT at #3 and stayed in the top 3 on CMT Pure Pack for 5 weeks straight. Karen has also played at numerous events including NASCAR ESPN LIVE, the NFL Experience Superbowl XLVII, the French Quarter Music Festival, the Cleveland Browns NFL Game, LSU Official Pre-Parties, the world famous Bluebird Cafe, and many songwriter festivals across the US.
Waldrup’s vocals demand attention and her poised stage presence makes for a monumental show. Karen Waldrup is an adept artist with enough ambition and drive to become a household name.
America first fell in love with GRACIA HARRISON when she yodeled her way onto season three of NBC's The Voice. However, Harrison had long since established an accomplished résumé. Preceding her television debut appearance on the nationally-acclaimed show, she had already shared the stage with Luke Bryan and Daryle Singletary, as well as met Miley Cyrus and Jimmy Fallon.
Becoming a recording artist and entertainer is not simply a dream for Harrison; music has been a constant healing companion. She shares an endearing story involving an unlikely song choice for a toddler. "When I was about two years old, I used to sing and dance to 'Boogie Woogie Choo Choo Train' by the Tractors." She adds, "I would stand on the fireplace at my grandparents' house and sing. I liked to pretend it was my stage." Harrison admits that she "kind of brushed it off when people told me to join church choir and talent shows," opting for a more intimate setting instead. "I'd put on 'concerts' in my front room for my parents and brothers. I'd put down a blanket on the floor and that was my "stage." Then I'd sign autographs after!"
Making the commitment to pursue music professionally in her pre-teen years, Harrison joined church choir and entered singing competitions. "I entered my first talent show at the Illinois State Fair and placed fourth. I went on to enter the Sangamon County Fair talent show and won that one. I think that was the moment I realized that I wanted to do this for a living… because I love it!" When Harrison was seventeen, she entered an online contest through MySpace Karaoke and Hollywood Records. She explains the contest process: "You had to pick one of three Miley Cyrus songs to cover, and if your video had 100 views or more, it would be considered to be viewed and critiqued by Miley. The winner would be flown to NYC, all expenses paid, to meet Miley backstage at the Jimmy Fallon show. I won!"
Loretta Lynn, Sugarland's Jennifer Nettles, LeAnn Rimes, Miranda Lambert and Kellie Pickler are among the female vocalists who have been influential in helping Harrison craft her own musical style. "From day one, I have always been influenced by Jennifer Nettles. I won my first talent show with one of her songs. Her voice is so beautiful and unique and I love her twang! I absolutely admire Loretta, who was a true pioneer for all female country artists to follow; she exemplified the concept that it's perfectly okay to not let the business define the artist that you are." In the same way, Miranda is very down-to-earth and not afraid to be herself and do things her way." Another inspiration is LeAnn Rimes, because "she was so young when she started in the music business and she's a fellow yodeler. I can really relate to her." Harrison also admires Kellie Pickler. "She had a really tough life growing up – as did I – so I've always admired her for having the courage to audition and making it as far as she did on American Idol then transitioning into a being successful solo artist since the show. With me being on The Voice," she adds, "it is inspiring for me to see that even though you didn't win the top prize at the time, if you continue to work hard, you can still be successful."
One attribute that immediately sets Harrison apart from her peers in the music industry is her yodeling, a skill she was introduced to while competing on the Colgate Country Showdown. "A girl sang 'Cowboy's Sweetheart,' and my mom said to me, 'Gracia, that's so cool!'" Harrison admits that she wasn't as impressed at the time. "I said, 'Moooooom, please, that's so weird and cheesy." In a twist of irony, Harrison was visiting her grandmother's house a few months later and as she listened to LeAnn Rimes' Unchained Melody album, she fell in love with that very tune – yodeling and all. "I ran downstairs a few minutes later to tell my family I had learned to yodel!" She shares, "It took me a few years to refine my vocal control but I figured it out within a few minutes!"
Those precious minutes turned into the opportunity of a lifetime, as Harrison prepared for her national television debut on NBC's The Voice. She was the first contestant in the show's history to yodel during her blind audition, earning her a spot on Team Blake. Of the experience, she shares: "I loved how the crew and everyone took us seriously and knew that this is something we all loved to do. I felt like they really did want to help portray me and my fellow contestants in the best way possible and help make our dreams a reality. It was such an awesome experience… I love them all!"
Harrison did initially have second thoughts about auditioning with "Cowboy's Sweetheart." She explains, "Going into The Voice, I was so nervous about my song choice, not because I didn't think I was talented enough. Growing up people my age made fun of me for yodeling, so I had become very self-conscious about it. I knew that it was something that was difficult for a vocalist to do and also that it was something that made me unique, but I was afraid people wouldn't understand that." Harrison ultimately chose to stick to her guns; her decision paid off and had the coaches singing praises after her blind audition. "After Adam was gushing over me telling me how I was the best country singer they had ever seen on the show, how I'm better than half the people out there on the radio making millions, and Blake telling me that I just did something that I couldn't fake my way through, I realized that I had done something special, and that there was nothing embarrassing about it." During her time on The Voice, Harrison says she received similar positive responses for her song choice. "The producers and everyone on the show made me feel like it was so cool that I was yodeling. The other singers on The Voice were all so unique… there were so many who didn't really fit the status quo." This was a pivotal realization for Harrison. "I think being different is what makes you a good artist. I learned that you should be yourself, no matter what, to believe in yourself and to not be afraid to be different!"
As Harrison progresses in her musical career, one of her goals is to learn to play the fiddle. Anyone who attends Harrison's live shows will no doubt hear her love of the instrument throughout her set. In addition, she aspires to create and share music that transcends the country genre, much like her predecessors Faith Hill and Carrie Underwood have done. "I really appreciate the older country and like to incorporate those sounds while still having a really upbeat tune about my cheating boyfriend and how I keyed his car or whatever!" She hopes to use whatever platform of fame she may attain to inspire others who have been bullied – as she has – or do not have a lot of confidence or self-worth. "Growing up, I have always had trouble with being bullied and picked on," Harrison divulges. "Not that I'm complaining; I'm glad it happened, because it really inspired me to not give up on my dreams." Knowing how pre-teens and teenagers can be so susceptible to others' opinions of them and that many of these same teens will likely to become her target audience, Harrison strives to lead by example to show that embracing the very traits that make you unique can be a beautiful thing.
One thing people may find interesting about Harrison is that she enjoys working out to 80s music. "People think that's weird. I find it stimulating!" She also loves to fish, and she'll have you know… "Yes, I will put my own worm on and take the fish off the hook myself!" Finally, she likes to go mudding on four wheelers… especially if she's getting covered in mud.
Summer will find Harrison with a heavy touring schedule throughout the Midwest. She is currently in the studio working on her new single, set to be released this June; her debut EP is tentatively scheduled for release in fall of 2013. You can also tune in to her YouTube channel; with simply a guitar in hand, Harrison offers her take on songs that her fans and subscribers request.