Local singer Rhonda Thomas - who has garnered a reputation for lending her vocals to soul, jazz, and dance tracks - is, without a doubt, one busy woman. Just check her website and you'll see that her schedule is chock full of gigs around town and across the country. Her latest performance (featuring Thomas and a host of other artists) is actually going down this Saturday (June 16) at Creative Loafing's PrintHouse headquarters in Atlantic Station. And before she graces the stage, we rapped with her about this weekend's show and more.
Honestly, you are one of the most in-demand performers in the city. It seems like you're constantly on stage - either in town or out of town. How did you get hooked up with this latest gig?
Rhonda Thomas: Thank you for saying that and for being such a great supporter! I get no greater pleasure in music than to perform for a live audience. I try to be selective on the shows in Atlanta because I don't want people to ever get tired of seeing me. This show on Saturday is the beginning of a four-part summer series at the Creative Loafing headquarters in Atlantic Station. The guys from Harmony In Life have partnered with me to create a showcase.
What kind of show will you be treating people to on Saturday? Are you playing with a band, and are you performing originals or covers?
"Rhonda Thomas Presents ... " will feature my band backing some of the best national and Atlanta-based soul and jazz artists. As I travel across the country, I meet these incredible artists that my folks will love, and this is my first opportunity to share them and to develop a unique live experience.
This Saturday, we have singer/songwriter, Kipper Jones. Kipper wrote Brandy's "I Wanna Be Down" and "Broken Hearted," Vanessa Williams' "The Right Stuff" and most recently, Lenny Williams' current hit, "Still." The show also features Arrested Development's Tasha LaRae. She is a phenomenal singer with her own CD and she makes great jewelry "Earjeans," too. The Rude Boys have stepped in for Tony Terry. They are famous for their 1991 R&B No. 1 hit "It's Written All Over Your Face," and they have a wonderful new CD that is scheduled for release this year. I'll be hosting and performing some originals and covers, too. Oh yeah, DJ Rev Lee will be our soul music selector!
Speaking of music, are you working on any new stuff right now?
The objective this summer has been to stay close to home more so that I can work on new music. We have an ambitious goal of working on a Christmas project, a remix album and a new CD this year. I am working with Khari Cabral, Daz-I- Que, Tyrone Gregg on the new CD - and with Al "A-1" Ross, Mark "Rock" Nelson and Duane Covert on the Christmas project and remix album. People should look for my mix of soul and jazz with some hip-hop sensibilities. The Christmas project will be out before year's end. The other stuff is for 2013. Wow, Carlton 2013 isn't that far away!
Do you have any other big gigs coming up this summer?
This summer, we are planning several performances for non-profit organizations like the Maynard Jackson Youth Foundation, Math Is My Friend, and the National Black Arts Festival's outreach to senior facilities. I am getting back to New York City for a show at DROM in August and there are return shows to North Carolina, Texas and Washington, D.C. that we are discussing right now. We are working on a third performance with Frank McComb here in Atlanta that I am excited about!
Rhonda Thomas Presents. Featuring Tony Terry, Arrested Deveopment's Tasha LaRae, and Kipper Jones. $15. Doors open at 8 p.m. Creative Loafing's PrintHouse, Atlantic Station, 231 18th St.
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ahh. i see what u did there. clever as always.