POINT PLEASANT — There are two words currently buzzing around the Mason County Fairgrounds — Jo Dee.
For all the redheads out there, and for all the people with the soul of a redhead, get ready because county music superstar, Jo Dee Messina, will bring her high-energy show to West Virginia’s largest county fair starting at 9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 10.
Messina spoke with the Point Pleasant Register on Thursday about the upcoming concert and about those fans who play an integral role in her career.
“We have a great time,” Messina said about her stage show. “My band and I have been together for a while … everyone loves everyone else, and that shows. We engage the audience and want them to be a part of it. We’re all here to have a good time.”
Messina said during her concerts she not only sings and performs but shares a few stories, particularly about two new songs she has which are competing for release. Messina said she tells the story behind the new songs that people seem to get a kick out of, and of these songs, she’s letting the fans decide which one they like better. After all, the fans helped get Messina where she is and helped bring her new album to life.
Taking a breather from the Nashville label machine, Messina said she wanted to do something “with the very people who have given me this wonderful career.” This new record, backed by the fans, allows her and her fans, a sense of ownership over Messina’s material that is unparalleled.
This is all part of a campaign Messina has right now called “My Time. Our Music.” Messina said she wanted to do something fun with people and likened this campaign to running in 5K’s — she’s also a runner. She said when she’s running in a race along with a lot of others, that feeling of being in it together is a “great feeling” and that’s what she compares this new era in her campaign and career to most. In case the fans are wondering, the two songs up for a vote are “Peace Sign” and “Womans Rant.” Both songs have a lot to offer listeners but it’s “Peace Sign” which puts the “FU” in “fun.”
As for that much anticipated concert on Saturday night, Messina says she likes the fans to leave her shows feeling like they knew her 10 times better than they thought they knew her when the show began.
“I really hope people can sense we appreciate being able to be there,” Messina said about Saturday’s concert, promising she’s going to play all the hits.
Messina said she’s encouraged about all the ways people can now access her music, given the various Internet sites and devices out there meant to get songs to the masses. She said this accessibility has helped build a fan base of people of all ages — fans who maybe weren’t even alive at the time some of the songs were hitting the charts. She talked about recently meeting a little girl who said she’d been waiting to meet Messina her whole life even though that whole life was only eight years long at the time. Then there was the 18-year old who said she used “Bye Bye” as her breakup song — Messina joked, that will always be a great breakup song.
To hear your favorite Jo Dee Messina song, just show up at the Mason County Fair Saturday night. As for what Messina’s favorite song to perform is, she said that depends on the fans and, “when the fans get excited, I get excited.”