Country sisters Presley and Taylor will be headlining the Harvest Music Festival at Middlefield’s Lyman Orchards to benefit St. Jude Children’s Hospital on Saturday, September 9.
According to the countrynote.com, the reason was “in keeping with the show’s tradition, and Ernest Tubb’s passion, to support new talent.” Simply put, Presley & Taylor are “country music’s hottest, new sister duo.”
The sisters are 18 and 20 years old. Both are also full-time college students.
“It was such an honor to perform there,” said eighteen-year-old Taylor, the younger of the two, and an incoming freshman at Sacred Heart University, on a recent phone call from their home in Middlefield. “It’s a place where a lot of our heroes performed.”
That is right: heroes. The two sisters grew up in a household where Tammy Wynette, Alan Jackson and Randy Travis played on a constant loop and weekend trips to their grandparents meant family singalongs of Loretta Lynn standards.
“Our mom sings, our dad plays guitar, and so do all our aunts and uncles,” Presley, 20, said. “And it’s all country.”
Taylor performed “Your Cheating Heart” as a 5-year-old at a local talent show. The two practiced along with the radio and they performed in musicals
Presley and Taylor did their first session at a recording studio in Bloomfield when they were 14 and 16 years old. “We just fell in love with the whole process,” Taylor said. Then a year later, the teenage duo’s first singles, “Looking for a Cowboy” and “Kickin’ Back,” released in 2015, charted in the Top 40. “While You Were Gone,” their third single, topped out at No. 30.
Soon they shared the stage with Martina McBride and Restless Heart, and singing regularly at such Nashville hot spots as Tootsie Orchid Lounge, the Hard Rock Cafe and Margaritaville. Musicrow.com lauded their “whimsical charm” and “impeccable harmonies.” This spring, they performed on stage of the Grand Ole Opry at the invitation of country music star Pam Tillis.
They’ll be splitting their time between Sacred Heart University, which both attend, and Nashville starting this September. “Our professors are really understanding about our crazy schedule,” said Taylor, who’s a junior.
That’ll be crucial given their recent signing with premier Nashville talent agency Buddy Lee Attractions. As well as forthcoming appearances at the world famous Wild Horse Saloon on Oct. 16 and a return to the Grand Ole Opry on Oct. 19.
Still, it’s the local performances that remain close to their hearts. “It gives us a chance to share the experience with our family and friends,” said Taylor. Not to mention the opportunity to lend their talents toward a worthwhile cause.
“To think we can use our voices to give sick children a chance at life, a chance to be the best they can be, that’s pretty amazing,” Taylor said.
More amazing than the Grand Ole Opry and Midnite Jamboree?
“It’s all good,” said Presley with a laugh.
The Ninth Annual Fundraiser for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital takes place from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sept. 9 at Lyman Orchards on 32 Reeds Gap Road in Middlefield. The free event features music by local and regional bands, wagon and hayrides, pony rides for the kids, an outdoor grill, food vendors and a silent auction.
Here’s a sample of the sisters’ songs. Leave a comment below to let us know what you think.
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