Greetings my Loyal Reader(s), and welcome to the latest edition of the Branson Beat, your home for all the news on the Branson entertainment scene.

As always, feel free to drop me a line at jclark@bransontrilakesnews.com, or send me a message via our Branson Tri-Lakes News Facebook page.

Now, let’s get to it. 

Petersens drop new gospel album  

One of my favorite performing families, the award-winning bluegrass band the Petersens, recently released their first all-gospel album, “Homesick for a Country,” which is a compilation of the most loved and requested gospel songs they have performed during their Sunday gospel show at the Little Opry Theatre over the past two years.

“While we love singing fun bluegrass songs, there is something special about gospel songs,” said Ellen Petersen, director of marketing and band banjo player and vocalist. “Singing words that we believe and watching God use this music to open people’s hearts and bring them hope and encouragement is a truly special experience.”

As cool as it would be to cruise over to the Little Opry Theatre and see these awesome performers, we’ll have to wait a few weeks to do so as they’re set to travel to Finland to be a part of the American Bluegrass and Gospel Festival Saturday, followed by their fourth Irish tour from Aug. 21-26.

The Petersens will return to Branson in time to play at the Southern Gospel Picnic at Silver Dollar City on Aug. 29, and resume their regular performance schedule at the Little Opry Theatre at 2 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays, as well as their gospel show at 2 p.m. on Sundays.

“Homesick for a Country” is available on iTunes, Spotify, and petersenband.com. 

For more information, visit petersenband.com or call 417-335-4832.

Saliva set for Aug. 21 at Branson Events Center

On Wednesday night, rock group Saliva will perform a special show at the Branson Event Center, 4230 Grenta Rd. at the Shoppes at Branson Meadows.

The group burst onto the music scene in 2001 with the release of their second album, the double platinum-selling album Every Six Seconds. This record contained the hit “Click Click Boom,” as well as the Grammy nominated tune “Your Disease.”

The group continued to have success with their third album, Back in to Your System, a certified Gold-selling album that contained the hits “Always,” “Raise Up,” and “Rest In Pieces,” co-written by James Michael and Nikki Sixx of Mötley Crüe.

The current lineup features original guitarist and singer Wayne Swinny, Tosha Jones and Kevin Edison. The Bucket List Branson, also located in the Shoppes at Branson Meadows, is set to host an after concert show featuring “Machine Gun Symphony.” 

Folks who present their “Saliva” ticket stubs  get in for free at the “Machine Gun Symphony” show. Adult beverages will be served by The Bucket List with proper I.D. 

Tickets are available by calling 417-677-6133 from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m., or visit facebook.com/Saliva for more.

ChamberSteamPop artist to host debut concert’  

Singer-songwriter Michelle Deck is set to debut her EP “Unplayed: The Chronicles of Lady Lyric” at a release celebration and concert Friday, Aug. 23,  at The Majestic Atrium in Branson. 

The seven-song, mostly original project, is the first in her ChamberSteamPop genre, described as “classically infused Pop music with a Steampunk twist.”

The EP will officially be released Aug. 24 on iTunes, Amazon Music, Google Music Store, and dozens of other digital platforms worldwide.

Deck has been performing her “Dynamic Inspirational Entertainment” concerts in and around Branson since 2016. She was twice featured in the Southwest Missouri New Music Showcase as one of the Ozarks’ up-and-coming original artists. She has also performed several times as a Main Stage artist for the Hollister Grape & Fall Festival and Autumn Daze events.

The release celebration and concert will also feature several Branson entertainers as special guest artists, including vocalist Voices of Glory standout and 2018 Branson Female Vocalist of the Year Nadia Cole, violinist Louis Darby from “The Sons of Britches,” and former Branson headliner and magician Michael Weiss. 

In addition to Darby, other award-winning Branson musicians were also featured on Deck’s EP, including drummers Dino Phillips and Pete Generous, bass guitar players Dave Clark and Randy McConnell, and trumpet player Dennis Schildknecht. Recording studio owner and engineer Greg Roller also performed on guitar for several songs on the EP.

The concert event will begin at 7:30 p.m. in The Atrium room of The Majestic Theatre at 2849 Gretna Road in Branson. 

Advance tickets are $7, available at EventBrite.com, or $9 at the door. A portion of the evening’s proceeds will be donated to CAM to assist in their ongoing community service. 

More information is available at MichelleDeckMusic.com or CDBaby.com, or at LadyLyricMusic.com, which launches Aug. 24.

Youth improv class offered at Branson Community Center

A new Youth Improv Class is being offered at the Branson Community Center by the Branson Improv Group. This class for kids and teens class is a perfect way for adolescents to have a ton of fun while learning valuable skills. 

Each class is packed with “fun improv games, played in a low-pressure environment.” Besides having fun, this class will help kids gain confidence, learn teamwork, improve listening skills, and much more. 

The four week session will be held on Sundays beginning Sept. 8. 

The fee to attend is $80. 

Call 337-8510 for more information.

Missouri Craft Distillers Guild South Missouri Roadshow

Labor Day weekend will see the first ever Southern Missouri Craft Spirits Festival from the Missouri Craft Distillers Guild South Missouri Roadshow at 1 p.m. at the Missouri Ridge Distillery.

Many craft distilleries from around the state will be presenting their spirits at this event. The distillers will be sampling their whiskeys, bourbons, vodkas, rums, gins, brandies and cordials. Some will also be showcasing the newly defined Missouri Bourbon at this event. 

Guests will also have the opportunity to purchase products directly from the distilleries. Some of the most awarded craft distilleries in the country come from Missouri, and they will be presenting their products at this event.

‘Homer Lee & Friends’ show set for next week at Americana

Next Sunday, Aug. 25, longtime local entertainer Terry “Homer Lee” Sanders is again hosting his annual “Homer Lee & Friends Show,” set to benefit Generation Next, Riley’s Food Bank and Branson Fire & Rescue, but this year, he’s celebrating 40 years in the Branson entertainment scene.

Sanders, a native of Mountain Grove, has been a staple in Branson for 40 years, working at places like Silver Dollar City and Shepherd of the Hills, as well as several other area shows. 

Some of Sanders’ most popular characters include Ada Mae, Grandma Beulah, Barney Fife, “Joan of the Ozarks,” Fred and Ned Smoot, Terry the Tour Guide, and of course, Homer Lee.

In 2012, he hosted a “reunion show”  featuring several Branson area performers, as well as several of Sanders’ comedic alter egos. The show was a huge success and became an annual event, with each year topping the previous production.

This year’s lineup features Jamie Haage, the Silver Dollar City Homestead Pickers, Danny Joe Eakin, Greg Becker, Walter Morrison, Greg Bailey, The Braschlers with Johnny Walters, Clifton Braschler, Janice Braschler, Todd Braschler, Sherri Braschler Weiss and Paul Braschler, Brad Bacon, Chelsie Boyd Odom, J.C. Clinton, CJ Newsom, Miki Cunningham, Dylan Pratt, Prue Heart featuring Teresa Stone, Melanie Cook Bertoglio, Tonyia Landry, Willie McCray-Moore, Al Fred Lohman, JT Lynn, George Dyer, Josh Goff, Martha Betterfield, Mandi Denney, Forrest Herzog, David Brooks, and many more surprises.

Sanders is also asking everyone who attends to bring a nonperishable food item for Riley’s Food bank.

Call 417-544-8700 for tickets.

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