Country Star Sara Evans Is Family Focused

Keith Loria Music Scene

Country star Sara Evans has enjoyed a prolific recording career and is one of the most compelling female vocalists of her generation, with hits such as “Born to Fly,” “Suds in the Bucket” and “A Little Bit Stronger.”

She’s released eight critically acclaimed studio albums and her last—“Words”—was named among Billboard and Rolling Stone’s favorite country albums of 2017.

On Nov. 29, the multi-platinum selling recording artist will play the Event Center at Hollywood Casino in Charlestown, West Virginia, less than an hour’s drive from Tysons.

“This will be an acoustic show, which I love,” Evans says. “They are a lot more intimate and it gives me an opportunity to talk to the audience a little more, so it’s quiet. My son will be playing guitar and we’ll have another guitar player, plus my sister Leslie will be singing harmony with me. It’s a great way to hear the songs in a different way than normal.”

Evans grew up in Missouri on a farm, and she’s always been close to her family.

“When I was 4, my two older brothers started taking guitar lessons and I would start singing along with them and my parents realized I had a voice,” Evans says. “They started getting other musicians to back us and we formed different bands. By the time I was 6, I was working as a professional musician, doing shows all over Missouri.”

She was one of six siblings, and through the years, she has performed with most of them. And she’s gotten her own kids involved as well. Earlier this year, Evans was inspired to go in the studio with daughter Olivia Barker (16) and son Avery Barker (19), to record a 6-song EP after strong fan reaction to acoustic renditions of “Dreams” and “Born To Fly” posted to Instagram.

Her brother still plays bass on her tour and other siblings sing with her from time to time.

“Family has always been important to me and I love being in business with my family,” she says. “When you work with family, it sounds great because you grew up doing it together, so harmonies are really natural. Plus, they keep me grounded.”

She doesn’t remember a time when she wasn’t singing and knew this was the direction her life would go at an early age.

“I don’t have a memory of not being a singer. I knew this was my purpose in life and there was never any really doubt that I would move to Nashville and become someone like Reba or Loretta Lynn,” Evans says. “I started so young, it was so natural for me.”

Evans is looking forward to coming to our area and performing in front of her fans from D.C. and Virginia.

“The live shows are my favorite part of what I do. I love being in a studio and creating new music, but to be on the road and have those moments where you know you are reaching right into someone’s heart and maybe even changing their life with a song you are singing, is a great feeling,” she says. “I know that some songs mean so much to people and now they get to hear it live for the first time, so it’s a great feeling. That’s really important to me to try and deliver that every night.”

Soon after the Charlestown gig, Evans will be embarking on her “Blue Christmas Tour,” where she will spend the month of December playing her favorite holiday tunes and songs off of her two Christmas albums. Don’t be surprised if she gets into the holiday spirit a little early on Nov. 29.

“A lot of people do like the Christmas shows so we’ll be doing some fun stuff with that,” she says. “We are changing up the show to add some songs not on the last Christmas album.”

Evans also is headed to the studio this fall to begin work on her next new album.

“We’re in the pre-production phase now, so I’m overly excited,” Evans says. “It’s going to be really cool. Something very different for me, something I’ve never done before, but I can’t say what it is yet. It will be a big surprise to a lot of people.”

In addition to new music, Evans will also be wrapping up her memoir, which she has been writing for the past few years.

“It stated out being a little more comical and my unsolicited advice about different things in life— parenting and being a working mom—but then when I started writing it, it was impossible not to give a lot of backstory to my life and how I developed these opinions and why I am the way I am,” she says. “It’s not my entire life story, but quite a bit of it.”

For more information about Evans in concert, visit www.hollywoodcasinocharlestown.com.