Saturday afternoon, the city of Jackson, Tennessee went to the dogs – literally, with the Third Annual Bone Appetit Festival – an event that combines food, music, and love of man’s best friend.
Sponsored by Central Distributors, and organized by Downtown Dogs Group – a non-profit, no-kill dog rescue organization in Jackson, the event served as a beautiful tribute to animals – and the human spirit.
The past two years have seen some outstanding performances at Bone Appetit– with J.T. Hodges (2013) and Cody Slaughter – famous for his portrayal of Elvis Presley in the Million Dollar Quartet musical, and 2015 was no exception with a performance from classic rock band Primal Fear as well as Country newcomers The Kimberlie Helton Band.
CMChatLive.com was in attendance at Bone Appetit, and spoke to Helton about her music – and her love of animals.
Q. How would you describe your music?
A. “We try to play a little bit of every genre, so that when people come to a show, they will hear something that they like. We really love throwing in a Soulful/R&B touch, even when we’re doing Country.”
Q. I understand you have a new CD. Tell us about it.
A. “Eric Wood, my guitar player and I, write all of our own material. We have about seven songs that we wrote together, including one called ‘Gossip,’ which is the title of the EP. The song makes fun of gossiping, and not encouraging it. That’s a pet peeve of mine. We also continue to write, and we do several of those songs on stage.”
Q. You are from Henderson– a small town in Southwest Tennessee. I’m sure you never have had to deal with gossip……
A. “Ha! In fact, it was a true story that inspired the song. Sometimes, especially in a small town, you can have women that want to hate on people and nitpick. If you’ve ever been on the other side of gossip, you typically won’t do that to someone else. I was in the center of a situation, and I thought I wanted to write a song about it like Taylor Swift does when she has a breakup. It’s just a little funny tongue in cheek song that actually makes fun of me in the song too. It talks about how God doesn’t expect me to love the girl who wears her dress too tight. It’s making fun of me, but it’s also saying that people who gossip might be church going people, but they find loopholes – like saying ‘Bless Your Heart.’”
Q. Who are some of your influences, musically?
A. “I love Susan Tedeschi, Beth Hart, Aretha, Alicia Keys, but also a lot the classic Country artist like George Jones and Merle Haggard. I love the emotion of their lyrics. I also think Kacey Musgraves is one of the best writers I have heard in a long time.”
Q. Tell me about being here for Bone Appetit.
A. “We’re so excited to be a part of it. It’s a great benefit. Downtown Dogs Group does such an amazing job at what they do, and we’re just glad to be a part of it.”
Q. Is there a particular dog that you had that was a special pet to you?
A. “I had a part Chihuahua named Lucky. He was actually the most unlucky dog. He liked to chase cars, and would almost get caught up under their wheel about every time. We had to keep him inside where he never could do that, but he was so precious, I can’t wait to see all the dogs out here today. There are definitely some beautiful ones out there.”
Downtown Dogs Group is a no-kill rescue group dedicated to the stray dogs and cats of Jackson, Tennessee – providing them with spaying/neutering, immunizations and vet care – and ultimately finding kind and loving homes for them. Many are dogs who are deemed “unadoptable” for reasons such as age, health, breed or temperament; but the organization is dedicated to working with each one and giving them the chance they deserve.
Many of the dogs that come to Downtown Dogs Group are found on the streets of downtown Jackson. However, like many southern rescue groups, we adopt dogs out both locally and in the northeast. Legislation in that part of the country has cut down on the number of stray dogs and thus many northern adopters seek to adopt a rescue dog from the south. The hope is that one day the south will enact more legislation to protect and assist companion animals.
For more information, go to www.DowntownDogsGroup.org