By JACK CLARK
---- — I first heard Meghan (Crain) Barrow, of McLeansboro, perform in 2009. I was so impressed with this young lady that I asked her to be our opening act at the second WolfStock that same year.
Then, in 2010, she was also the opening act at the Spring Thaw, held at the Granada Theater
She was one of those individuals who was obviously going to be a performer, even at an early age.
“I was that four-year-old driving her family crazy singing at the top of my lungs constantly. I’ve always loved to sing,” said Barrow. “The next decade I spent doing the talent show thing.”
But it took a while before Barrow would realize her talents with a musical instrument. In fact, she had some unexpected help in that regard.
“When I was grounded at 15, I had a lot of time on my hands and decided to learn the guitar. I started to play out with other fellow musicians but hadn’t quite ventured out on my own yet,” Barrow said. “When I was in college, I had a speech professor who loved to play and sing. She got me my first ‘college gig’ on my own and really introduced me to a great music community where I went to school in Charleston. Though there were many a shows and experiences before then, that is where I really got my start stepping out on my own, just me and my guitar! Since then I have been fortunate enough to keep a pretty busy music schedule. I love playing music of all sorts these days. The type of music I play has evolved greatly from since I started. I was strictly a country singer, but have since moved on to a wider variety. Country is still dear to my heart, but you are more likely to here folksy, singer-songwriter type songs, old and new, when you come to my shows now. I’ve learned to take any song I like and put a sort of ‘coffee house rock’ twist on it making it my own!”
There have certainly been some highlights in her young career.
“A professional music moment that I was lucky enough to experience was going to record in Nashville. I got to see what it was really like to take a song that I had written and watch it morph into a real recording. Working with professional recording musicians and producers was an opportunity to learn so much. I got to see what it was like on the back side of things,” said Barrow. “Another time I got to see what it was like behind the scenes was my Nashville Star audition. Making it into the top 25 at Indianapolis, I had the chance to see how those shows really work and to meet a lot of great people in the business.”
When asked about where she has performed, Barrow provided a nice list.
“The Southern Illinois Miner’s Stadium, The Granada Theater, the Kentucky Opry and Wolfstock are a few that pop into my mind right away. I’ve also performed at many local festivals and fundraisers. Performing for the Nashville Star judges was a memorable one. Restaurants, bars and wineries have always been regulars for me as well as weddings and private parties,” Barrow said. “I play every month at Genkota Winery (Mt. Vernon) and through the summer at Jack Russell Fish Co. (Benton). One interesting performance was on our honeymoon a few years back. They were having a ‘Mexican Idol’ competition on our resort where I got to sing with a band and won the talent competition, winning my husband and I a free 2nd honeymoon!”
Meghan sees her future with emphasis on performing.
“My personal music goals are to keep a busy music schedule! I love playing music. I want to keep playing as much as possible and am always seeking out new opportunities to do so,” said Barrow. “I’m constantly looking to play somewhere new. I hope to always be learning new music and experimenting with new songs. Ultimately I would be happy to always have a place to play and people to enjoy listening!”
Meghan Barrow will be the opening act for Trampled Under Foot, at the Sesser Opera House on Saturday, Feb.1.
Don’t forget to check out: http://musicallyspeaking.mvn.net.
DON’T DRINK AND DRIVE! OR TEXT AND DRIVE!
The Illinois State Police are counting on it.