The world of country music is a vast landscape filled with passionate fans, talented artists, and hardworking industry professionals.
For Mary Rae Knapp, her love affair with country music spans an impressive five decades, and her journey from being a devoted fan to becoming a beloved part of the Canadian Country Music industry is beautifully chronicled in her book, “Memoirs of The Godmother of Canadian Country Music: Johnny Reid changed my life.”
Mary Rae’s story begins in grade six when she purchased her first compilation country album, featuring the timeless voice of Patsy Cline.
From there, the sounds of sixties pop and country became the soundtrack of her formative years, and she even managed to convert her pop-loving friend into a country music enthusiast by introducing her to the music of Charley Pride.
Over thirty years ago, Mary Rae and her husband, Wayne, started attending country music festivals, making it a family tradition that continues to this day with the inclusion of their children and grandchildren.
The couple’s enthusiasm for country music led them to join various fan clubs, including those of iconic artists such as Loretta Lynn, Ricky Skaggs, and Terry Sumsion. Their love for the genre reached new heights when they had the extraordinary opportunity to attend Fan Fair in Nashville during the mid-80s, creating lasting memories cherished by the entire family.
Starting Johnny Reid’s Fan Club
However, Mary Rae’s involvement in the Canadian Country Music scene reached a whole new level when she co-founded Johnny Reid’s Tartan Army Fan Club alongside the charismatic artist himself. This collaboration allowed her to travel the length and breadth of Canada, passionately promoting the fan club and sharing unforgettable experiences with Johnny Reid and his band.
As readers delve into the pages of her book, they get an insider’s glimpse of life on the road and the bonds forged with many artists and industry professionals.
Throughout her journey, Mary Rae’s friendships with various artists, including the talented Brett Kissel, are beautifully portrayed in her book. Readers will be treated to heartwarming anecdotes and road stories, which highlight the genuine camaraderie and love within the Canadian Country Music community.
An integral part of Mary Rae’s narrative revolves around the Canadian Country Music Association Week, an event that played a significant role in deepening her passion for the country music scene. The book offers a behind-the-scenes look at the prestigious gathering, revealing the inner workings of the industry and the excitement that surrounds the event each year.
Becoming The Godmother Of Canadian Country Music
One of the most remarkable aspects of Mary Rae Knapp’s journey is her recognition as the Godmother of Canadian Country Music by none other than Erik Dylan, the lead singer of Black Mountain Whiskey Rebellion.
This title bestowed upon her a sense of purpose, inspiring her to create her own persona as a cherished figure within the Canadian Country Music community.
As readers embark on this literary journey with Mary Rae, they will be introduced to various artists, some familiar and beloved, and others waiting to be discovered. Her book serves as a gateway to a world of music, love, and camaraderie, and it provides an opportunity to celebrate the rich tapestry of Canadian Country Music.
Beyond her contributions to the country music industry, Mary Rae Knapp is deeply involved in supporting the arts. Her role as the chair of the Joshua Bates Centre Performing Arts Committee in Athens, ON, highlights her commitment to nurturing and promoting emerging talents within the community.
Mary Rae’s dedication to the Canadian Country Music Association and the Country Music Association of Ontario exemplifies her unwavering passion for the genre and her desire to contribute to its growth and success.
In “Memoirs of The Godmother of Canadian Country Music: Johnny Reid changed my life,” readers are not only treated to a captivating account of Mary Rae Knapp’s personal journey but also to a delightful exploration of the vibrant Canadian Country Music scene.
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This book promises to resonate with longtime country music enthusiasts and captivate the hearts of those just discovering the beauty of this cherished genre. It’s an invitation to celebrate the music, the memories, and the friendships that have transformed Mary Rae Knapp’s life and shaped her into an integral figure in the Canadian Country Music industry.
In country music, the Front Porch has long been a place of reflection. A place where you can look at the life you have inside that front door. A place where time almost seems to stand still, where you can get away. It’s also a place where you can go to observe the world as it passes by you. To think about your place out there beyond the driveway.