I was born in New Orleans, Louisiana and grew up on the North Shore in a town called Mandeville. Life in New Orleans’ melting pot of music has tremendously influenced me with it’s deep music heritage that I experienced from an early age that you could find in places like Tipitinas, Ruby’s Roadhouse, Preservation Hall, the Blue Room, Dew Drop In and from artist like The Neville Brothers, Louis Armstrong, Pete Fountain, The Producers, Banu Gibson, Fats Domino, New Orleans Symphony, marching bands & street musicians. Deep delta blues, jazz, Cajun, zydeco, rock, latin and classical. There was music everywhere. Both of my parents are musicians, dancers, educators and healers. My mother plays piano, banjo and sings. My father plays piano, guitar, saxophone, clarinet and sings. Home exposure was to Square dancing, Ballroom dancing, Big band, Country music, Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman & Johnny Cash. Go figure.
Meanwhile, next door the neighbors were listening to ELO and Boston and I was too. I started playing and performing at the age of five. My first instrument was piano, not by my choice but I am ever so grateful. That metronome that sat on top of the piano still resonates within me. It laid the ground work for things to come with the left hand’s bass lines and the icing on the right hand. I really wanted to play guitar. In middle school, I started playing clarinet. At age 11, I started classical training in voice and opera from Sharmel Schrock at Southeastern Louisiana University. I was offered summer internships at Julliard. I performed with Karl Koenig who was a jazz pianist at that time. In high school, my first television appearance was on the news as I sang a Madonna song, “Crazy for YOU” with the rock band I was in. As time went on I would go out to 5 Lakes in Bush, Louisiana and play bluegrass and that’s where I started playing the doghouse or Upright bass. I also started working a bit in the movie business that had moved into the state of Louisiana. You can get a glimpse of me in Everybody’s All American starring Dennis Quaid. It was a totally nonspeaking role as a party girl with a beehive coif.
My summers were spent in the country with my father’s parents who lived in Foxworth, Mississippi on a farm. Although I feel as if I am not old enough to have known any share croppers, I have. We would visit ole man Luther and bring him fruit. He was always humming and always had some candy for me. We frequently ate lunch together. At night you could hear the music coming from the juke joint down the road. Barrelhouse piano. My grandmother played piano and organ in the local Hopewell Methodist Church. We would travel around as she would accompany me at “sings” which are Gospel performances on church grounds or in churches. She played the flute as well. She secretly paid for my guitar lessons. She was a principal of an elementary school. So, my summers were filled with learning and practicing the art of writing. Not only was she truly an inspiration but totally supportive. She signed me up and took me into the city for auditions, one of which was for the television show, You Can Be A Star. My grandfather played the trumpet but I can’t recall ever hearing him. He was a chemist, basketball coach, farmer, and superintendent of education. It was here I learned the workings of a farm. Other cousins in the area played country music and what would now be called Roots music, rock n roll. I continued my voice/opera training here with Lucinda Harrington. And of course I did, what singer hasn’t picked up the hairbrush and stared into the mirror as she belted out a Conway Twitty tune.
The Mountain music comes from my mother’s side of the family. Along with buck dancing and Bill Monroe. They all sang. Old school music derived from the Irish, English and Scottish roots. I’m not exactly sure just how far back music in my family goes. It has been said that my great grandmother, whom I am named after played the fiddle and sang. She also smoked a pipe. I feel blessed to have experienced the best of city and country life and to be from a musical family. It’s been a wonderful blending of cultures. Yes, I can bail hay and sing opera… Maybe at the same time.
In 1995, I moved to Nashville to play upright bass and sing with a bluegrass group, “The Calvins”. The late Jim Calvin former New Christy Minstrel and his wife Royann Cooper Calvin of Covington, Louisiana. I would play upright bass and sing with the two at 5 Lakes in Bush, Louisiana. There were lots of pickers there. The Calvins’ asked me to find a bass for I didn’t own one and instructed me ” The strings are G, D, A, & E”, “Come up here and play Dollywood with us for a season”. Four weeks later I found myself in Pigeon Forge with a bass. What fun we had. In Nashville we would play the Long Hollow Jamboree which was right down the road from Bill Monroe’s place, Ernest Tubbs Midnight Jamboree and after the Grand Ole Opry would let out at the Bellcove. Many, many places and faces.. Pickin parties with Townes Van Zandt, Jimmy Martin, tons of folks. On occasion, I’d play with Bluegrass Legend, Bill Monroe, mostly at the Station Inn, Long Hollow Jamboree or on the front porch. He in fact, could not pronounce my given name Andréa and that’s how “Audrey”, “Audrey Malone” was born. He used to call me the Grand Ole Audrey. After a couple of stalkers it didn’t take long to realize I probably should have a stage name, an unlisted phone number and address. Yes, Bill that Blue Moon is still shining, his favorite song for me to sing.
Various other bands followed:
(Audrey Malone, Andrew Henderson, Kelly Bramberger, Jimmy Clark)
Texas Tours for Christmas.. Load em up and move em out. Texas bound. Tours for the Children of Texas for Christmas. 23 days of Christmas.
Audrey Malone & the Rhythm Kings
Swingtown released in 1999, HepCat Records
Jump Swing-Blues-Ragtime-Western Swing-Rockabilly
1998 NEA Band of the Year
(Audrey Malone, Michael Evans, Greg Smith, Johnny Heinrich, Carco Clave, John Richards, Laura Carter-Cash, Rich Redmond, James Ingle, Lee Thomas, Brooks Haynes, Mark “Smiley” Shenkel, Tom Cerone)
This band was a real work horse. Horns, Strings…. Everything. Touring South East and North West. Lots of River Festivals and theaters/concert venues. Boy oh boy! The fans could really dress up. The dancing was hot! And the band was Smokin… BeesKnees. The Cats Pajamas. At the time we were being courted by Sony but heard about a BMG merger where you just can get stuck in a contract and they could sit on you. We didn’t want it to be us. So we opted for a different angle. We sure were thankful to be on the same bills with great acts like Hootie and the Blowfish and many others. Thank you, whoever you are.
The Dave Roe Years
Here comes the bride.. The Bride in Black with a long black train. What a wedding! Audrey Malone marries The Man in Black’s Bassist Dave Roe. It was a beatnik event to say the least. The Duke of Rockabilly & the Dutchess of Swing married by James Brown’s bassist Rev. Sydney Bryant. Complete with bassy verbage and Charlie Chadwick inspirational bass solo performance. The snapping of fingers and a mass of black, to a checkerboard topped wedding cake. 11 years of wedded bliss. Lots of material to write about. A Honeymoon in Hawaii where I found myself singing with Don Ho’s Orchestra to my Mr. “I’ve Got a Crush on You.” They didn’t miss a beat.
Influences from this time period: Hawaiian Ukele Love songs performed by Hawaaian/Scot Dave Roe, Slap Bass, Jerry Roe, Johnny Cash, June Carter, Carters Fold, George Jones, Wanda Jackson, The Mavericks, Tom Petty, Dwight Yoakam, Dale Watson, Carol King, Fluke, Rosie Flores, Marty Stuart, Bass Player Magazine, Carvin, Gibson, Hofner, Line6, and many others
Coordination of Hats….. which one I was wearing at any given time. Stepmother, Wife, House Renovator, Nurse, Musician, Songwriter, Tour Schedule, Studio Owner, Purchase of Herz (Herz is Audrey’s Bass which Johnny Cash always requested Dave Roe to play on his records, Herz proudly displays the battle wounds from Dave Roe’s thumb nails from these sessions.)
Chiquita Commercial Vern Gosdin Commercial Multiple recordings as vocalist and instrumentalist on other artist projects
60’s British Rock Band
(Audrey Malone, Sherri Rich-Plant, Amy Rigby, Jerry Roe)
Audrey Malone & CowPie
Take It or Leave It – limited release 2004, Grail Records
(Audrey Malone, Dave Roe, Kenny Vaughn, Greg Wetzel, Jack Irwin, Ric Lonow, Jerry Roe, Wayne Bridge, Tony Paoletta, Mike Baker)
numerous guest-Chuck Meade (BR-549), Davis Raines, Phil Lee, Gretchen Cline The Nashville “A Team” with some good Muscle Shoals steel.
Methods of Maddness
Musique du Jour released 2006, Grail Records
(Audrey Malone, Ed Cain, Rodney Edmondson)
Rock –trio, described as Nirvana meets King Crimson with Sarah Vaughan on top.
The Naughty Skool Girls
Original Comical/Avant Garde
(Audrey Malone, Pru Clearwater, Jill Block, Deidre Wilson, Nancy Terzian, Stacey Schlitz)
Original lyrics for adults to make fun with. Theater. Each Skool Girl has a role. Audrey is known in this group as Tawdry Audrey who is a reformed Nun who went from tatting christening lace to lingerie. The group disbanded after photos taken by fans started appearing and looked rather strange out of context. Especially when members were married to notables and were in the PTA, had a spiritual cd coming out or the likes. Every once in a long while there is a reunion show but it normally is kept pretty quiet….and cameras are probably forbidden.
My Holiday Lemonade
If life gives you lemons….. Make lemonade. Sure to cure what ails when a girls got the post Roe Blues.. Clickety Clack and they won’t come back. Holidays are tough on everyone, all those memories..
Audrey Malone & Michael Evans
A Holiday to Remember released 2009, Grail Records
5 Star Review by CashBox Magazine
Top 10 Original Christmas Albums 2009
(Audrey Malone, Michael Evans, Martin Lynds, Jen Gunderman, Dann Sherrill, Betty Ashton-Andrews, Rusty Russell, John Heinrich)
This CD is and was my saving grace through the Holiday.
Perform in venues/festivals throughout the country to present day. Multiple forms from Solo/Duo/Band and stylistically varied as well.
(Audrey Malone, Nancy Terzian)
Duo formed with fellow Skool Girl Nancy Terzian formerly of the Westerleys (Folk Group)
Limited Touring: Louisiana, Tennessee, and California
Juke Joint Prophets
Gospel of Groove limited pressing, self released October 2014
(Audrey Malone, John Carrick, The East Side Flash, Matthew Williams, Bill Starrett)
I consider myself a lifelong student. I hold a few degrees and still continue to take college courses. My areas of study are: Histotechnology, Electronic Engineering, Nursing, Studio Recording, Music, Dance, Foreign Language, Medicines from the Earth, Advanced Injectables… Other accomplishments for which I am proud: Owner of: Audrey Malone Publishing (ASCAP), Grail Records, Studio 1208, & Fountain of Youth Med Spa. Performing for patients at Monroe Carroll’s Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Member: Musicians On Call, 20+ years of being a pediatric/neonatal critical care nurse, Medical Mission Work.
Thru the years songwriting has become my focus and recording it before it vanishes. It’s as if the whole song lands upon me to pen it but lifts away if I’m not astute to the muse. I have been blessed with talented lovely people around me to keep my musical soul fed and plenty of people to share the language of music with, providing comfort, tears, healing and laughter. It seems like Chapters to my life evolve into volumes but they continue to keep coming and I am thankful.
I am currently working as/with Audrey Malone, The Audrey Malone Band & Earl Poole Ball & Honky Tonk Revival.