By Tia Lynn Ivey
Post Monroe, an up and coming country female trio, is set to take the Madison Morgan Cultural Center’s stage on Saturday, Oct 8 at 7:30 p.m. One of the group’s singers, Shelby McLeod, is a life-long Madison resident and Morgan County High School graduate.
McLeod will return to her hometown with fellow bandmates, Whitney Duncan and Ashlee Hewitt, to put on a very special concert for the community that nurtured and guided her.
The year 2016 has been a whirlwind of success for Post Monroe. According to the MMCC, “In May 2016, [Post Monroe] released their self-titled EP, including the hit ‘Red Hot American Summer.’ Rolling Stone magazine counts them among “Ten Country Artists you Need to Know” and, in June, they made their Grand Ole Opry debut.
In an interview earlier this year with the Morgan County Citizen, McLeod shared her journey of becoming a professional musician.
“I grew up with a really musical dad and sister. Dad would have us up on stage or have us sing in church and I’ve been hooked on music and performing ever since,” said McLeod, who listed Shania Twain, Faith Hill and Patty Loveless as influential artists who impacted her as she grew up in the 1990s. McLeod relished being brought in up in a small town, and described herself as small town girl.
“I love and will forever cherish growing up in a place like Madison. I have many fond memories growing up singing in the choir, cheerleading, being in GA 4-H, doing community theatre- doing all the things girls from small towns do!” said McLeod.
McLeod draws on her childhood experiences when writing music. The singer cites the song, “Dixie Dust” as an example.
“That small town way of life always sneaks into what I’m writing,” shared McLeod.
Since McLeod was in high school, she had planned to move to Nashville as soon as she graduated from MCHS. But McLeod delayed that dream to earn a degree in Communications. Just two months after graduating college, McLeod landed the job of her dreams, working for Reba McEntire’s Starstruck Entertainment. That job proved to be the gateway into a music career of her very own. It was that job that led her to meeting her now bandmates.
“I met Whitney at my first job in Nashville. I was working for Reba and ran into Whitney in the lobby. I knew of her and when we met, we really hit it off. She and Ashlee (Hewitt) had already been writing and brought me in for a write. When we sang together for the first time, it felt super natural and like it was supposed to happen. As they say, the rest is history,” said McLeod.
McLeod takes pride in her hometown, eager to show it off to her bandmates.
“I can’t wait to show them Athens and Madison and where I grew up! I’m definitely biased, but I think it’s the sweetest place on earth. It’s also such a great feeling to see people you know at your shows,” said McLeod.