Carlene Carter

Carlene Carter

Doors: 7:30pm Show: 8pm General Admission: $30.00

With Carter Girl, Carlene Carter once and for all proclaims who she is. Her first album for Rounder, it features songs spanning the Carter Family generations, including celebrated Carter Family songs like “Gold Watch And Chain,” and others written and performed by the descendants of the original Carter trio—including Carlene herself. Not that she’s ever shied away from being the heiress to the legacy of country music’s foremost family. “I always include at least one Carter Family song, or one written in the Carter Family spirit,” says Carlene, citing as a pertinent example “Spider Lace,” which appeared on her deeply personal last album, Stronger (2008). “I wrote it thinking of the Carter Family’s flowery lyrics and romantic themes,” she says, noting, too, that the Carter Family catalog is heavy both on songs of faith and far darker fare. Turning to Carter Girl, she notes that all these facets of the Carter Family’s pioneering work which are reflected in a stunning album achievement that honors her ancestors while confirming her proud place among them. She is, of course, the daughter of 1950s country superstar Carl Smith, and June Carter Cash, who was herself the daughter of Maybelle Carter—“Mother” Maybelle Carter of the original Carter Family trio that formed in 1927 in the tiny Southwest Virginia hamlet of Maces Springs. Along with Mother Maybelle’s brother-in-law, A. P. Carter, and his wife and her cousin Sara, the Carter Family recorded such seminal country music songs as “Can The Circle Be Unbroken (By And By),” “Wildwood Flower” and “Keep On The Sunny Side,” and forever influenced the development of bluegrass, folk, pop, gospel and rock music genres, as well as country music. Mother Maybelle Carter and her daughters June, Helen and Anita, later performed as Mother Maybelle & the Carter Sisters, and after Maybelle’s passing, as The Carter Family, of which Carlene was a part for a time in the late ‘80s. But with the 1978 release of her self-titled debut album, Carlene Carter established herself on the edgier end of the country music spectrum, having recorded it in England with Graham Parker’s band The Rumour.

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