Songwriters with local ties to perform in concert at theater


All of the artists performing during an upcoming concert have Jackson County roots.

As part of a series of special events planned to celebrate Jackson County Community Theatre’s 50th anniversary, Don Pedigo, Stephanie Lambring, John Whitcomb and host Joe Persinger will perform original songs during a songwriter-in-the-round show at 7 p.m. Nov. 9 at Royal Off-the-Square Theatre, 121 W. Walnut St., Brownstown.

A limited number of tickets for the Songwriters’ Showcase are on sale now at Artistic Impressions in Seymour and Family Drug in Brownstown and online at Tickets are $10.

"Having these three professional recording artists — all with Music City USA experience — onstage in the same show is a rare event," Persinger said. "This is a one night, one time opportunity to hear their songs in a comfortable, intimate indoor listening room venue. New state-of-the-art seating makes the theater even more inviting. We expect tickets to sell out quickly.”

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Beer and wine will be available for purchase along with the theater’s usual concessions, including popcorn, candy and soft drinks.

Pedigo, originally from Freetown, is best known for a hard-rocking "heartlander" sound. His CD, "The Cross Eyed Sessions," stayed in the roots rock top 40 charts for almost two years.

He recently joined forces with the Nashville backing band The Coyotes, and they have laid tracks for a new EP. They are currently booking shows across the country and teaming up with other artists as supporting acts.

The new developments have brought a light of hope after Pedigo and his wife, Kim, lost their son, Christopher, to an overdose in 2014.

Pedigo works closely with Overdose Lifeline and donates part of his merchandise sales, time and songs to the cause.

"So much happened so fast," he said. "It took a few years to come to some healing, and part of that is in sharing our story when called upon."

Lambring, who also hails from Freetown, moved to Nashville, Tennessee, in 2006 to attend Belmont University. She immersed herself in writers’ rounds and showcases and during her senior year gained some traction in England. She made her radio debut on Bob Harris’ "Saturday Night Programme" on BBC Radio 2 in late 2008. 

That led to recording of her 2009 full-length album, “Lonely to Alone,” and a subsequent United Kingdom tour. She has booked five UK tours to date.

During her time in Nashville, Lambring has served as a staff writer for BMG and Carnival Music. Several top artists have recorded her tunes, and some of her songs have been featured on the hit television show "Nashville."

In 2016, she won Eddie’s Attic Open Mic Shootout in Atlanta. Previous winners include John Mayer, Shawn Mullins and Jennifer Nettles.

More recently, Lambring has taken a few steps back to rediscover her love for music. She recently finished recording an album to be released in spring 2020.

Whitcomb, a Seymour native, graduated from the Musicians Institute in Los Angeles, California, and headed to Nashville, Tennessee, where he began performing with an established group.

That led to the opportunity to open for Nashville veterans such as Vince Gill and Chet Atkins.

Whitcomb’s songwriting ear was teased again by employment he found in the pit orchestra at the American Cabaret Theatre in Indianapolis. It was the music from "Shuffle Along," Broadway’s first African American show, that really caught his ear. Musician Eubie Blake and lyricist Noble Sissle’s music had a lasting impact on his writing style, as can be heard on his latest album, "Arabelle."

His most recent project is setting the lyrics of his distant relative, poet James Whitcomb Riley, to music.

Persinger, a local folksinger, has been involved in JCCT since 1971 and was a member of the organization’s first board of directors. He has appeared as an actor in more than 25 plays and directed several others.

He began playing guitar and singing at events on campus during his college years. In the late 1960s, influenced by Simon and Garfunkel, he began writing songs and continues to write, perform and record his original music.

His most recent CD, "Dreams Go By," features original tunes as well as covers of songs by artists such as Harry Chapin, Donovan and fellow Hoosier Tim Grimm.

"I think this is going to be an outstanding event, in part just because of the ambiance and intimacy of the Royal-off-the-Square," Persinger said of the upcoming concert in Brownstown.

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What: Songwriters’ Showcase

When: 7 p.m. Nov. 9

Where: Royal Off-the-Square Theatre, 121 W. Walnut St., Brownstown

Who: Don Pedigo, Stephanie Lambring, John Whitcomb and host Joe Persinger will perform original songs

Tickets: $10; a limited number of tickets are on sale now at Artistic Impressions in Seymour and Family Drug in Brownstown and online at


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