Richelle Putnam has written lyrics and music for over thirty years. In the early ‘80’s, she played guitar and sang with The Magnatones and at the millennium, after rearing four children, took up writing music again. She also co-writes with Ralph Gordon and together they co-wrote seven of eight songs on the soundtrack, A Mother’s Son, a historical play set during the Civil War. Richelle’s songs have been awarded by American Songwriter Magazine, Song of the Year Contest, UK Songwriting Competition, and more. Her songs are or have been featured on several radio stations, including Number 1 Internet Radio Station, IRADIO LA, Banana Peel Radio, Band Radio, Midnight Special Blues Radio, Dr. Lou and the House of Blues Hour, Women of Substance Radio, Radio Crystal Blue, and Skope Magazine Radio. Lyrics to four of her songs have been published in American Songwriter Magazine and on their website.
Songwriting/Music Résumé Only. Does not include creative writing education, publishing credits, or writing awards.
Facilitates workshops on writing/songwriting at private and public schools, home-schoolers, libraries, and through various arts programs.
Teaches private creative writing/songwriting lessons to children and adults
Teaches songwriting/creative writing at College for Kids, held each year at Meridian Community College
Co-writer of A Mother’s Son, a historical play produced by Newton Theatre Company and which premiered on November 29, 2007.
Co-writer of Women of Potta Chitto, a historical play based on the original script, A Mother’s Son.
Co-Writer and performer of the soundtrack, A Mother’s Son, consisting of eight songs co-written with Ralph Gordon.
Women of Potta Chitto Soundtrack has been performed at various events around Mississippi
PUBLISHING/WRITING AWARDS IN SONGWRITING/MUSIC:
December 2006 runner-up in Song of the Year Competition in contemporary category for My Wish
February 2007 – Honorable Mention, Song of the Year Competition in Contemporary category for The World Is Much Bigger Than Me
April 2007 – Honorable Mention, Song of the Year Competition, Christian Category, for Thank God for All the Little Things
All About Need – Published in November/December, 2007 issue American Songwriter
January/February 2008 – Honorable Mention – American Songwriter Magazine for Take the Long Way home
April 2008 – Top five finalist with Ralph Gordon for Grierson’s Raid, Song of the Year Competition, February 2008, Folk Category
June 2008 – Honorable Mention for See the Boy, Song of the Year, Rock Category, June 2008
October 2008 - Tired of Outlaws and Chasing Desperadoes, Rebel Soldier, Forest for a Child, I Ain’t Leavin’ Tonight, How Many Can You Take, and The Truth Hurts, So Tell Me A Lie – iRADIO LA Indie 104
September 2008 – Commendable Certificates from the UK Songwriting Competition on The Truth Hurts (So Tell Me a Lie) and The Best of You (Is Yet to Come).
November 2008 – IRADIO LA accepted nine additional songs for play on the #1 Internet Radio. They are: I Ain’t Leavin’, High Strung Woman, Tell Me, The Best of You is Yet To Come, Tell Me A Lie, See The Boy, Ridin’ a Railroad Car, Change My Mind, and two co-written with Ralph Gordon, Grierson’s Raid and Rebel Soldier
December 2008 – Runner Up, Christian/Gospel Category, Song of the Year, for His Love Overwhelms Me
December 2008 - See The Boy chosen as featured song for January 2009 by Skope Radio
December 2008 – Top Ten finalist for Grierson’s Raid and Rebel Soldier in Crescent Music and Media’s Civil War CD Compilation competition
January 2009 - High Strung Woman – chosen out of many song entries by Dr. Lou of the The Dr Lou Radio Show, New Jersey, to be a featured song on World Wide Independent Radio, WNJC 1360 AM January 2009 - High Strung Woman selected by Midnight Special Blues Internet Radio, Live 365, as a featured song for rotation
February 2009 – Honorable Mention for American Songwriter Magazine’s Lyric Writing Competition for My Baby on My Knee, My Soldier in My Heart.
February 2009 - iradio la, Indie 104 selects "Lost in You" for play
February 2009 - Through Sonicbids Songwriting Competitions, Banana Peel Radio, Vancouver, Canada selects Richelle's EPK to feature worldwide
February 2009 – Top Ten finalist in Ginger Creek Records Country/Pop Artist competition
April 2009 – BandRadio, an innovative 24-hour streaming radio station, accepts “Change My Mind” and “Grierson’s Raid” for play.
May 2009 – #1 Internet radio station iradio la, Indie 104 selects Baby on my Knee, Soldier in May Heart for rotation
May 2009 – Honorable Mention for His Love Overwhelms Me Song of the Year March 2009 Christian/Gospel category
May 2009 – Midnight Special Blues Radio, Live 365, accepts Change My Mind for rotation
May 2009 – Ridin’ a Railroad Car receives Honorable Mention from American Songwriter Magazine and will be featured in the July/August 2009 issue
June 2009 – Take the Long Way receives “Suggested Artist Placement Award” from Song of the Year April, 2009’s Songwriting competition
June 2009 – Women of Substance Radio chooses Take the Long Way Home for Love” as a featured song.
June 2009 – Radio Crystal Blue selects See The Boy, All About Need, and High Strung Woman for play
July 2009 – Acoustic Fuel Radio accepts Take the Long Way Home for Love” as a featured song.
July 2009 – WomensRadio Independent Channel on Live365 Radio accepts It’s All About Need as a featured song.
August 2009 – #1 Internet radio station iradio la selects The Best of Me is Yet to Come for play
September 2009 – Honorable Mention for Walk With Me, Song of the Year Competition, Folk Category
September 2009 – Semi-Finalist out of 6,000 entries into the 2009 UK Songwriting Competition for His Love Overwhelms Me, Contemporary Christian Category
September 2009 – iradio la, Indie 104 selects The Ghost Train for play
September 2009 – By popular demand, Women of Substance Radio featured Take the Long Way Home for Love” in its Folk Radio Program.
October 2009 – “My Side of Bad” receives Honorable Mention in the 2009 Mike Pinder’s Songwars Competition
December 2009 - Chosen again as a favorite Indie Folk Song by Women of Substance (WOS) Radio listeners, Take the Long Way Home for Love” was featured again in the WOS December Folk Radio Program.
December 2009 – Pongid Radio selects Richelle to be a featured artist on its program, debuting her song “My Side of Bad.”
March 2010 – “Take the Long Way Home for Love” plays on WJDX Radio, Jackson
March 2010 – WomensRadio selected “Take the Long Way Home for Love” for rotation
March 2010 – “My Side of Bad” receives Honorable Mention from Song of the Year December 2009’s songwriting competition
May 2010 – “My Side of Bad” debuts on The Songwriters Network, Internet Radio Live 365
June 2010 – “Take the Long Way Home” and “My Side of Bad” to be featured on UK International Showcase hour
July 2010 – 17th Annual Billboard World Song Contest, Honorable Mention for “True American Hero,” co-written with Ralph Gordon
July 2010 - 17th Annual Billboard World Song Contest, Honorable Mentioned for “My Side of Bad.”
September 2010 – “Ballad of Meridian,” 12th place in CityLove Music’s Song About a City Songwriting Competition and is being considered for the CD compilation
October 2010 – “Your Roaming Eyes,” runner-up, Country Category, Song of the Year competition
November 2010 – “My Side of Bad” to be featured on the Go Go Girls International Radio Show
December 2010 – UK Radio International Christmas Special on Richelle Putnam as Mississippi Arts Commission Roster Artist/Teaching Artist, Mississippi Humanities Speaker, and Indie Singer/Songwriter, featuring six songs and the stories behind them.
December 2010 – Go Girls Music Radio, the best in Indie Women in Music, to feature my music
January 2011 – WomensRadio to feature “All the Little Things”
February 2011 – WomensRadio to feature “Keep Forgettin’ Me”
“Mississippi in Me,” written by Sheila Hutcherson and Linda Wey, vocals and guitar by Richelle Putnam featured on Women of Substance Radio
Just little old me and my trusty guitar and keyboard.
Tracks from the soundtrack, "A Mother's Son," have been played on local radio stations and performed in theatres. Many other originals have been played on stations throughout the world. UK International Radio did a Christmas Special on Richelle featuring eight of her original songs.
A Mother's Son (Final Recording)
How Many Can You Take (Final Recording)
All About Need
Ridin' A Railroad Car (Acoustic)
Take the Long Way Home for Love(2)
"A Mother's Son" Presented at the Roxy Theatre
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'A Mother's Son' presented at the Roxy Theatre Cheryl McLain/News Editor The Newton Record NEWTON...'A Mother's Son' presented at the Roxy Theatre
Cheryl McLain/News Editor
The Newton Record
NEWTON — The long-awaited production of “A Mother’s Son,” a Civil War period historic play will be presented by Newton Theatre Company at the Roxy Theatre in Newton. The play will be presented Thursday night at a special invitation presentation and then open to the public on Saturday, Dec. 1 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 2 at 2 p.m.
The directors, cast, costume designers and stage hands have worked very hard to make this the most unforgettable production the people of Newton and surrounding areas, hopefully, have ever seen.
The play, a year and a half in the making, is based on documented historic facts in the town of Newton and reflects the lives of many of the town’s residents during that era.
“All the cast are from the Newton area and have been working really hard to make this play one that will steal your heart,” Rachel Beeland said. “This play is all about Newton from the writers, to the characters and story itself.”
Writers Anne McKee, Richelle Putnam and Ralph Gordon brought to life an “unknown soldier” from Doolittle Cemetery, gave him a name and a family and based it on events that actually happened in Newton with Grierson’s Raid and the burning of The Depot.
“The idea for this story came about when Malcolm White (President of the Mississippi Arts Commission) came to town to visit the Chamber last year,” Beeland said. “We went into Robert Garvin’s shop and he saw a picture of an “unknown soldier” from Doolittle’s Cemetery Garvin had made.
Beeland said she had told White they needed to raise money for the building next to the theatre and needed some ideas.
“Malcolm told us that we should write a story about the “unknown soldier” and put it on stage and we could make a lot of money,” Beeland said. “At that time our eyes lit up and Angie Burks and I went to see Robert Garvin. He in turn called Ralph Gordon and Ralph contacted Anne McKee and Richelle Putnam and that is how the idea came about.”
The song lyrics for the play were written by Richelle Putnam and Ralph Gordon and music for the production will be sung by Richelle Putnam who will accompany herself on the guitar. Barry Roebuck with Roebuck and Sons Music has worked with the music and the recordings.
Directors for the play are Beeland, Nancy Brand, Joe Pugh, costuming by Lynn Pace, Nancy Brand and Karen Freeman, sets by Paulette Trammil and Charles Pace.
The cast of characters include Leigh Ann Whittle, Lauren Acord, Cody Strait, Katrina Kennedy, Senator Terry C. Burton, Craig Leonard, Daniel Lee, Addie Watts, Kristen Walker, Robert Ray, Frank Kirtley, Jarod Armstrong, Ashton Acord, Heidi Armstrong, Randy Weaver, Vicki Richardson, Sarah Mutziger, Alora Ryans, Dustin Alexander and J’ Marks Dubose.
“We hope that our play accurately portrays the history of Newton,” Gordon said. “We would like to thank Rachel Beeland, Joe Pugh and Nancy Brand for giving us this opportunity.”
And as for this writer, I can’t wait to see this production that is set during the Civil War because I for one am a Civil War buff who grew up with a “Gone With the Wind” book in my hand. And as Margaret Mitchell wrote in the beginning of her book; “There was a land of Cavaliers and Cotton Fields called the Old South. Here in this pretty world, Gallantry took its last bow. Here was the last ever to be seen of Knights and their Ladies Fair, of Master and of Slave. Look for it only in books, for it is no more than a dream remembered, a civilization gone with the wind.’’
Tickets on Sale for "A Mother's Son"
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Tickets on sale for 'A Mother's Son' Cheryl McLain/News Editor The Newton Record NEWTON — The dir...Tickets on sale for 'A Mother's Son'
Cheryl McLain/News Editor
The Newton Record
NEWTON — The directors and cast are working really hard to prepare for the opening of “A Mother’s Son” to be presented by the Newton Theatre Company at the Roxy Theatre. The production is a Civil War period historic play set in the town of Newton. The production will be presented on Saturday, Dec. 1 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 2 at 2 p.m.
“This play is depicted upon documented historic facts in the town of Newton and commemorates the hope of all Mississippians,” Rachel Beeland said. “All the cast are from the Newton area and have been working really hard to make this a play that will steal your heart.”
The play was written by local writers Richelle Putnam, Anne McKee and Ralph Gordon and the music for the play was written by and will be sung by Richelle Putnam.
“... the people that received special invitations need to RSVP immediately as seats are filling up,” Chamber of Commerce Director Angie Burks said. “You also do not need to wait to buy your tickets at the door for the Saturday and Sunday productions because we expect this is going to be a sellout play.”
Tickets for the production are $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under. Tickets are available at Newton County Bank, Newton Chamber of Commerce, Bank Plus, The Coffee Cup Cafe, Regions Bank and McBeth Drugs. For more information you can call Rachel Beeland 601-683-3752, Nancy Brand 601-683-3273 or the Chamber of Commerce at 601-683-2201.
Beeland, Crenshaw Honored by Chamber
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Beeland, Crenshaw honored by Chamber Cheryl McLain/News Editor The Newton Record NEWTON — The 55t...Beeland, Crenshaw honored by Chamber
Cheryl McLain/News Editor
The Newton Record
NEWTON — The 55th annual Newton Chamber of Commerce banquet was quite a success no matter how you measure it.
The highlight of the banquet was the naming of the Man and Woman of the Year. The big winners were Joe Beeland and Kay Crenshaw.
Of most everything that happens whether it’s the chamber, the theatre, the church, the businesses community or someone getting married, both the man and woman, Joe Beeland and Kay Crenshaw, can be found working tirelessly to make it a success, Burks said.
Guest speaker, John Johnson, of WTOK-TV, told the story of the runner who was injured during the race but continued, and as he crossed the finish line hours behind everyone else he was asked why he put himself through the agony and pain? Johnson’s answer was his goal was to finish.
“This applies to us in business, in Chamber, in economic development and even our personal lives,” Newton Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Angie Burks said. “We must keep on going till we get to the finish line, not to just start out and then quit because we cannot finish first.”
The United Givers Fund Chairperson, Donna Pace, was honored by Tim Thomas for her work as UGF chairman this past year.
The election of the new chamber president, Kay Crenshaw, promises to bring on a series of new ideas and organizations for the Chamber with the upcoming new year, which began on Monday, July 2, 2007.
“If you are not currently a member of the Chamber of Commerce and would like to be more involved in the community, please contact us at the chamber office 601-683-2201,” Burks said. “We would like the participation of new businesses and individuals so that we are serving the community in a way that helps everyone.”
If you have ideas and suggestions, please let the board members and director know.
Burks said the chamber will keep going with such annual events as the Loose Caboose as well as looking for new events to add, as well as bringing visitors and new businesses to town.
“As you can see we already have a busy year ahead of us, but we are looking forward to it with a downtown grand opening, ribbon cutting pretty soon as we have several new businesses that have just recently opened,” Burks said. “I am excited about all that we have going on in Newton already and look forward to another year of success as we begin to lay plans in place starting next week with our first meeting of the new chamber board.”
Entertainment of the evening was a special surprise when Richelle Putman, president of the Mississippi Writer’s Guild, introduced a song she has written for a story about an unknown soldier from Doolittle Cemetery titled “A Mother’s Son.”
The song is part of a play that was written just for the town of Newton with the same title by Putnam, Anne McKee and Ralph Gordon, all members of the Guild.
“The production will only be put on in Newton,” Newton Theatre Co. President Rachel Beeland said. “We are honored and touched by this script and it is going to be something you will never forget.”
Portraying the unknown soldier at the banquet was Frank Kirtley of Decatur, who walked among the crowd mysteriously as Putnam sang the song.
Burks also thanked the businesses that donated items for the silent auction as well as the chamber’s corporate sponsors, Newton County Bank, Regions Bank, Garvin’s Piggly Wiggly, La-Z-Boy, ESCO, Newton Regional Hospital, Wal-Mart and the City of Newton.
“We would also like to give another thank you to John King of Mississippi Power as our past president who has worked tirelessly on the power for our Loose-Caboose Festival among his many other responsibilities as Chamber president,” Burks said.
Local Talent Sparks Weekend Country Concert
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Local talent sparks weekend Country Concert at Roxy Ralph E. Gordon Special to The Record NEWTON ...Local talent sparks weekend Country Concert at Roxy
Ralph E. Gordon
Special to The Record
NEWTON — Barry Roebuck has never played the Nashville scene or had a million-seller hit, but his reputation as a musician in this neck of the woods speaks for itself. Barry has been making music since he started playing the drums for his father at the age of nine.
If you’ve never heard him play I suggest you attend the next performance like the one he produced at the Roxy Saturday May 26. If you hand Roebuck a musical instrument he will make music come out of it ever which way you can imagine. Music comes natural to him.
With the blessings of Rachel Beeland and the Newton Theatre Company, Roebuck assembled some of the finest talent in the country music business for the Memorial Day Weekend performance. Most of the talent was homegrown, including the steel guitar man, Newton County’s own Charlie Harrison. Many of the performers who graced the Roxy stage had worked with famous musicians such as Patsy Cline, Willie Nelson and gentleman Jim Reeves. Roebuck also brought May and Mackey, a husband and wife team from Scotland. The Scottish duo has been performing Jimmy Rodgers music in Europe before bringing their act to the States.
Country music fans received a special treat as the band Back Roads with lead singer Larry Blackburn’s narration of the history of country music, starting with music from the Jimmy Rodgers era and ending up performing contemporary country.
Newton had two young performers to dazzle the crowd, too. Faith Westbury performed the Loretta Lynn hit “Coal Miners Daughter “followed by Heidi Armstrong singing the classic Bill Monroe tune “Blue Moon of Kentucky.”
The most memorable moment of the afternoon performance came as Senator Terry C. Burton paid tribute to America’s war veterans who gave their lives in defense of our freedon. Burton asked the crowd to remember our fallen heroes with a moment of silence. Vocalist Richelle Putnam ended the 10 -second silent tribute with “America The Beautiful”, and there was not a dry eye to be seen in the Roxy as Ms. Putnam’s gentle soul penetrating voice resonated within the walls of the historic old theatre.
Beeland seized the opportunity to plug the play “A Mother’s Son“, which was written by Richelle Putnam, Anne McKee and this writer. The Newton Theatre will present the play later this year which will include several original songs written by the Putnam, McKee and Gordon trio.
In addition to the music, the audience was entertained by columnist and playwright Anne McKee. Ms. McKee, who never fails to charm an audience with her humor and appreciation of Mississippi heritage, introduced the Scottish duo with a short narrative salute to Jimmy Rodgers and his music.
The grand finale was performed by Rick McWilliams the great nephew of the legendary Jimmy Rodgers as he was backed up by Bob Saxon and the group Swing Shift from Chattanooga.
Roebuck has also booked similar performances in Corinth, Mississippi as well as in Arkansas.
Local singer Richelle Putnam sings one of her and co-writer, Ralph Gordon's hit, Grierson's Raid.
I perform original or co-written songs, eclectic genres (guess I can't make up my mind), with sets being as short as fifteen minutes to two-hours, or maybe the the whole night. Depends on crowd control. Or should I say, the lack of it?