The Duncan Banner

Homepage

January 23, 2014

From Weleetka to Nashville, aspiring singer’s story told in documentary

DUNCAN — Success in the music business rarely happens overnight.

Just ask Amber Hayes of Weleetka, whose journey through the business of country music is told  in “Music City U.S.A.,”

a feature-length documentary that will be shown at 5:15 p.m. Saturday in the Simmons Center theater during the Trail Dance Film Festival.

The country artist will also perform Friday night at Wall Street and during the Trail Dance award show Saturday evening.

From the beginning, she  always felt at home on stage, she said in an interview with The Banner.

“I felt like this is what I was supposed to do.”

Hayes, now 32, started singing at small Oklahoma festivals, fairs and at church.

She was only 15 when Jean Shepard, a Pauls Valley native and pioneer for women in country music, saw her singing in Ada.

“She invited me to sing in Nashville and I knew I wanted to move there,” Hayes said. “She told me to go back home, finish high school and move there when I turned 18. That’s what happened.”

Only two weeks out of high school, Hayes moved to Tennessee.

She landed the starring role of Kathy Twitty in the Conway Twitty musical “It’s Only Make Believe.”

Hayes released her debut album “C’mon” in 2010.  Her music was featured in the 2012 film “Cowgirls N’ Angels” and included a duet with Richie McDonald of Lonestar.

She was named “One to Watch in 2013” by Billboard’s The 615 after releasing her current single “Any Day is a Good Day.”

Hayes also opened for Reba McEntire, one of her biggest influences, in Durant last year.

“I feel really blessed to have had all these opportunities,” said Hayes.

“I may not be a household name yet but that’s okay. I’m working toward that and thankful so many of my dreams have come true.”

“Music City U.S.A.” was  directed by Chris McDaniel and delves into what Nashville means to country musicians.

It features artists such as Vince Gill, Little Jimmy Dickens, Charlie Daniels and Pam Tillis.

1
Text Only
Local News
4-20 bestinshow - carshow.jpg

Deral Knight of Rockport, Texas, won the Best In Show Award for his 1959 Chevy Corvette, which he first bought for his wife and then later restored to its current mint condition. Knight is a former Duncan resident.

Features
Sports
  • Outlaws have chance to host regionals

    The Marlow baseball team has had to overcome some adversity in recent weeks, but coach Jeff Brewer is confident the team will get back on track.
    The past week started with a road game at Blanchard, ranked seventh in Class 4A, last Tuesday. Then came a tough outing at home against Class 4A Newcastle Thursday and a showdown Friday at Sterling, ranked fourth in Class A.

    April 20, 2014

  • Tennis teams place second
  • Bronchos boast top-notch backstops
Education
Opinion
  • Governor, state Legislature have misplaced priorities

    If the Oklahoma State Legislators and our Governor spent less time interfering in women’s rights to manage their bodies, creating ways to lay more taxes and fees on the middle class in order to generate more tax breaks which benefit only the wealthy while also conceiving methods with which to fill Oklahoma’s for-profit prisons, they would be doing all of us a favor. Instead, why not work to enhance funding for our schools and wage increases for all school employees? While reforming the state’s educational budget, why don’t they approve wage increases for our Oklahoma State Troopers and enlarge their Academy to insure qualified individuals are ready to fill the upcoming vacancies as many of the older force retire?

    April 9, 2014

  • Self government key to keeping politicians in check

    Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that federal campaign laws that limit the total amount of money donors can give to political parties, committees and candidates for federal office (U.S. House, Senate, and President) was unconstitutional. The ruling will not increase the current $2,600 limit on how much a donor can give to a federal candidate in each primary and general election or the $32,400 limit that can go to a national party committee. Those limits are still in place.  The ruling will instead remove the limit on how many candidates/committees to which a donor can contribute.

    April 9, 2014