Location: R.A. Fountain

From our promo for this show:

Tamalyn’s Country Music Show on Friday Headlines Weekend of Music in Fountain 
[Fountain, NC] Greenville’s country music diva Tamalyn presents a Friday night concert with the Steve Creech Band in Fountain this coming Friday night. 

A transplant from Los Angeles who moved to Greenville in late 2005, Tamalyn has recorded a CD, Unbroken, which the Beverly Hills Times last year called a “stellar debut album.”

But the LA area was never a good country music playing field, she said, and the wear and tear of life in such a densely populated and expensive place to live had begun to wear on her.

“I had to get out of California,” she said. “I had to have a lifestyle change. I mean, it could take me a half-hour to get 2 miles in my car.”

She started searching for a new hometown on the internet and in Greenville found just what she wanted: “It had every requirement for my new hometown. Near a university, small but not too small, an appreciation for country and bluegrass music, and near the beach.”

Before moving east, Tamalyn had worked the country music scene in and around Los Angeles for 14 years. For the last several years, she has donated all of her proceeds, including sales from her CD, to the charity Kids in Solitude, which she established to aid children in the LA area.

Since moving to Greenville, Tamalyn has also begun aiding two local nonprofits with missions close to her heart: the Little Willie Center and the Pitt County Boys and Girls Club.

Unbroken was a long time in the making, Tamalyn admits. “It wouldn’t have been possible without the help and encouragement of my ‘dad.'”

Gene Viglione, her adopted ‘dad,’ had known Jimmy Jackson, one of Nashville’s most successful and respected songwriters, for many years. Viglione arranged the Nashville sessions that produced Unbroken, on which all but one of the tracks are written by Jackson, who has written songs with Dean Dillon and Ricky Lawson and performed and recorded with Lindsay Buckingham and Jo-el Sonnier. One of the tracks, “Borrowed Wings,” was featured in the Gary Busey film Ghost Rock. Jackson is also lead guitarist for the Trailer Park Troubadours.

“It’s an excellent, highly professional production,” said Greenville guitarist Steve Creech of Unbroken. “She’s got some of the best studio musicians in Nashville playing on it.”

Creech, whose band is backing her up for this Fountain show, met Tamalyn soon after she moved to Greenville, through a chance conversation with Viglione at an art show opening at Emerge Gallery. “Gene gave me a sampler of Tamalyn’s music,” said Creech. “I was impressed and said I’d like to meet her.”

Tamalyn then sat in for a few songs at a March peformance in Fountain with Creech’s sextet, and despite their not having practiced together, singer and band hit it off instantly.

“Of course I’d wanted to find a band once I got here,” said Tamalyn, “but I never dreamed it would be this easy — and they’re all so good.” Performing this week in Fountain with Creech, on guitar, will be Dee Braxton Pelligrino on violin; Larry Jones on keyboard; Keith Dobbins on bass; and Randy Davis on drums.

A native of San Jose, California, Tamalyn Torrecilla grew up dreaming of being a country music star. Along the way, she became content with a successful life as a real estate property manager who played country music dates on occasional weekends. But 3 years ago, she had an epiphany, when she realized the extent of hunger among many children who lived within a half-hour of her home.

“I was doing okay,” she said, “and the dream of putting out a record was pretty far removed from my mind. But once I started Kids in Solitude, I started trying to think of ways to raise money without having to just say to someone ‘why don’t you give me some money?’ We thought if we had a product to sell, like the CD, it would show how we were making money for our own charity, not just depending on gifts.”

Jimmy Jackson, she says, was great to work with, and he was equally impressed with the woman he quickly dubbed the country music diva of Los Angeles, although he didn’t think much of the Gary Busey film that used one of their songs: “a horrible movie,” he said.

Once the CD was out, she started hiring professional musicians for fundraising events in the Los Angeles area. “They went well,” she said. “We were raising a lot of money. But the lifestyle there ultimately just got to be too much. I mean, you really have to work several jobs just to maintain a decent life.”

So last fall, she packed up her Airstream and headed east, first to Miami to visit friends, and then to Greenville to forge a new life.

With savings from her California life, she purchased a small apartment complex in town and by January 2006, she and Gene had moved into a Fifth Street residence made all the more perfect for the vacant lot behind it, where she keeps her Airstream, ready to head to the beaches near her new home and life.

“She’s got a vibrant personality and is a spontaneous entertainer,” said Creech. “And she puts on a great show.”

Tags: Concert, country, original, popular