Tennessee native Mandy Barnett first portrayed country music icon Patsy Cline at age 18.
Years later, after starring as Cline in a Nashville musical and releasing her own albums, Barnett still enjoys singing Cline’s music.
On May 11, the country singer and songwriter will come to the Jabez Sanford Hardin Performing Arts Center in Evans to perform A Tribute to Patsy Cline. The show, brought to Columbia County by Augusta Amusements, starts at 7:30 p.m.
“It’ll be a lot of songs that you know, a lot of songs that you love, and a lot of songs that you haven’t heard in a long time,” Barnett said.
The Nashville resident, who has been singing since she was 5, was signed by two record labels, MCA Records and Capital Records, before turning 18.
Dropped by Capital Records after moving to Nashville, Barnett jumped at the chance to play Cline in a musical titled Always...Patsy Cline, which debuted in 1994.
Barnett said she had always been drawn to Cline’s voice.
“As a little girl, when I first heard her, I was really taken with her voice,” she said. “I just thought that she was a fantastic singer.”
Barnett auditioned against 450 women to get the part, which helped to launch her career.
Barnett’s 1999 album, I’ve Got a Right to Cry, was named a top country album by Rolling Stone magazine.
She also made appearances on the Late Show with David Letterman and the Tonight Show with Jay Leno.
Barnett’s performance in Evans will include songs popular between the 1940s and 1960s, including those by Cline and also classic country and pop, she said.
Tickets cost $35 for seats closest to the stage and $30 for all others.
“She’s got some terrific music,” said Augusta Amusement President and CEO Mike Deas.
Deas is also excited about a concert featuring jazz artist Earl Klugh that is coming to the Jabez in May.
Klugh, a Grammy winner, performs at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, but tickets are nearly sold out.
“A lot of his concerts are done with a band, but this one is very intimate because it’s just going to be him and his guitar,” Deas said.
Klugh has recorded more than 30 albums, 23 of which reached the Top 10 on the jazz album chart.
He also has garnered 12 Grammy nominations.
CDs will be available at the show, and Klugh will sign autographs after the concert.
“He connects with the audience so well,” Deas said. “He’ll share pretty interesting stories about his song before he actually performs it.”
Tickets cost $40 or $45.For information or to purchase tickets, call (706) 726-0366 or visit www.augusta