Striving for country music stardom
HOMETOWN SINGER Angela White, a Meridian native who now lives in Quitman, has recently signed a record deal with Tootsie's Records in Nashville. Photo by Paula Merritt/The Meridian Star
By Penny Randall / staff writer
Aug. 10, 2003
In the past year, Angela White's cowboy hats have become a part of her daily attire. She has a hat to match all her moods.
Those cowboy hats will come in handy now that White has signed a country music recording contract and will soon leave for a 60-day tour in Europe.
It was while she was on vacation in Nashville in July 2002 that White was "discovered" by record executives. She was visiting the famous country music club Tootsie's Orchid Lounge, behind the Ryman Auditorium the former home of the Grand Ole Opry.
White, 33, said she looked at her husband and said, "What have you done?"
She gave in and joined the band onstage where such famous country stars as Hank Williams Sr., Mel Tillis and Patsy Cline have performed.
Part of "Coal Miner's Daughter," about the life of Loretta Lynn and starring Sissy Spacek, was filmed at Tootsie's.
While visiting Nashville again in December 2002, White returned to the club.
A representative from Tootsie's Records was in the audience and had heard her sing a few months earlier.
And the rest, as they say, is history.
Not a born singer
White said she was not a natural born singer. In fact, she didn't speak her first words until the age of 4.
Both of White's parents are hearing impaired. Her mother is able to speak, but her words are very fragmented and broken. Her father is completely deaf and communicates with sign language.
White's first public singing performance came at age 17 at the 1988 Neshoba County Junior Miss program.
She sang "You Light Up My Life" a song she dedicated to her parents. White went on to win the competition and the overall talent award.
Onstage at MLT
From that time on, White has sung whenever and wherever she could, including in musicals at Meridian Little Theatre.
In 2002, White beat out 25 other women to win the title role in MLT's production of "Always … Patsy Cline," singing 24 of Cline's most famous hits.
The following year, White starred in "Annie Get Your Gun" and this year in the popular "Honky Tonk Angels."
At MLT's 70th Anniversary Gala, White won the award for Best Actress in a Musical for her portrayal of Patsy Cline.
White said music completes a circle in her life.
She has a job she loves as an interpreter for the Quitman Public School District, working with hearing impaired children. And, she has a supportive family husband Eddie and children, Joshua, 15, Luke, 9, and Emily, 8.
In fact, White says her motivation comes from Eddie.
With his encouragement, White said she is ready to pursue a career in country music.
She started her CD in February, for three months traveling every weekend to record in a studio in Nashville.
The CD, "Black and White," is half classic country/half new country. Her first release was "Lucky Girl," a song close to her heart.
White's next step will be a 60-day tour in Europe with a six-piece band and another up-and-coming male country singer.