Tessa talks with Kathy O’Donoghue, who performs Country and Western music in Britain.
Kathy: Country and Western music is American music essentially, um, but I prefer the term country music because it covers a wider area of what I do. It can include folk, lots of dance music, it’s a great form of music – there’s country swing -it can even relate to jazz.
Tessa: Give me a couple of lines of something you would sing on stage.
Kathy: Well, it wouldn’t be “Stand by your man!” It might be “Don’t come home a drinkin’…”
Well you thought I’d be waitin’ up
When you came home last night.
You’d been out with all the boys,
You ended up half tight.
Well liquor and love, they just don’t mix,
Leave the bottle or me behind.
Don’t come home a-drinkin’
With lovin’ on your mind.
Tessa: What kind of reaction do you get from audiences?
Kathy: You get very young audiences and also punks, from punks to old age pensioners, literally. I think it’s the venue that you put the audience in that affects the audience reaction. So that, for instance, if you’re in a theatre and, uh, it’s a no-smoking theatre, the seats are plush, people are expected to be very polite, they go there for a nice night out, then it’s hushed. If you sing a ballad, a pin would drop. You get great applause at the end. And again if you go to colleges, boy, that’s totally different – really drunk, you know, aggressive audiences that are there to have a good time and good luck to them. But sometimes there’s a kind of a young male element that comes out and they think the greatest compliment is to get hold of your mike stand and rattle it, not realising that they could knock your teeth out. I’ve had to move back halfway onto the stage and sing from halfway back.