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Jo Dee Messina Brought A Little Bit of Country to Hagerstown

Jo Dee Messina Brought A Little Bit of Country to Hagerstown
by Jennifer LB Leese

Jo Dee Messina rocked the house last Saturday night (November 3, 2007) at the Maryland Theatre in Hagerstown. With nearly a full house, Messina took the time to get personal, interacting with her audience.
Between songs, she shared the story behind each one. "The songs reflect what I was going through in life when I chose to record them." Messina sure has some interesting stories to tell. Her show was spectacular. On stage she danced, laughed, and goofed-off with the audience. Her energy was contagious. The audience danced and sang along with her. She played the piano, guitar, and drums, but she also plays saxophone.
Messina is known for her powerful, raspy voice. Those listening to her feel the passion and most can easily relate to the personal trials she sings about.
I've been to many concerts and I must admit, I knew very little of Messina before going to her concert to cover this story. I think I'm hooked! I had a great time. Jo Dee was down-to-earth and, dare I say, 'a lot like the rest of us'; her performances were right-on, and the audience "got" everything she wanted us to know. She's a performer who knows who she is and where she came from. She loves what she does and says she's in it for the music.
"Music has always been an enormous part of my life," said Jo Dee. "It's not just something I do, it's part of who I am. Songwriting to me is my refuge, a safe place to me where I can go to spell out my emotions, especially when dealing with tough situations. It helps me to gain perspective. You could say that songwriting gives me emotional freedom."
Jo Dee Messina (born August 25, 1970 in Holliston, Massachusetts) "is an American Country Music Singer/Songwriter, who came to fame in the mid-1990s.
"At age 16, Messina formed her own band, handling publicity, marketing and song selection. In her high school yearbook she wrote that she aspired to have a single out on country radio someday. At 19 she packed up all she could and drove to Nashville, Tennessee, with little money and no contacts in the music business. The feisty redhead was determined to make her dream come true. Soon after arriving, she met a struggling singer named Tim McGraw. The two became close friends." (
"Jo Dee was first attracted to country music after hearing the recordings of Alabama and Hank Williams, Jr. As for her love for country music, it grew as fast as her respect for its heroes. Dolly Parton and Loretta Lynn, the strong women of country, that wrote and sang from the heart, and Reba McEntire, the hard-working, blue-collar girl whom Jo Dee related to best." (
Messina is best known for her "kiss-off" songs like 1997's "Bye Bye", 1999's "Lesson in Leavin'", and 2005's "My Give a Damn's Busted".
"Heads Carolina Tails California" was her first album and with her latest released album, "Delicious Surprise", had several songs like, "It Gets Better," and " were written by Messina herself. With songwriting a passion of hers, she figured 'I have nothing to lose, so let me put some stuff on the record'..."it was really successful," she said.
"Unmistakable" is waiting to hit the stands, and features songs: "Biker Chick", "I Think About Us", "Just Drive", and my personal favorite, "I'm Done". The CD was originally set to hit stores on November 6, 2007. The single only peaked at 48. After being released for only 9 weeks "Biker Chick" was later dropped as a single by Curb Records. Curb also decided to shelf The CD "Unmistakable." It is unclear when it will be released.
Jo Dee currently has had 9 #1 singles, has been honored by The Country Music Association, The Academy of Country Music, and The Grammy Awards and was the first female country artist to score three multiple-week #1 songs from the same album. Recently, she has been nominated for the National Female Vocalist of the Year by the Boston Music Awards.
History was made with her songs: "I'm Alright" and "Stand Beside Me".
Jo Dee Messina has been nominated for National Female Vocalist of the Year by the Boston Music Awards. But she needs your vote to win! Show your support and vote now at! Voting is open to the online public from October 24 to November 16, 2007 at midnight.
To find out more about Jo Dee Messina, visit her website

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