Disadvantaged youth shine bright under the direction of celebrated Tamworth Blues artist
The Youthie will host an informal show this Saturday 16th January in what would normally be the very first weekend of the Tamworth Country Music Festival.
Despite the lack of hustle and bustle on Peel St, Tamworth remains a hub of musical talent and a great place to learn from top industry professionals.
It's no different for Anne-Marie who will be singing at the Youthie showcase this weekend.
Anne-Marie is 13 years old and learnt to sing with musical mentor and celebrated Indigenous Blues artist Buddy Knox.
Mr Knox has been mentoring disadvantage youth in Tamworth for over 15 years, first at the PCYC and now at the Tamworth Youthie.
"None of the kids would have these opportunities unless they came to me and we found a place to practice," Mr Knox said.
Mr Knox said this is his way to give back to younger people in his community and keep them interested in learning.
"I aim to help out underprivileged kids who have the talent, they have the drive to do it but they don't have the opportunities," Mr Knox said.
At their music practice earlier this week Anne Marie said she wasn't sure exactly what song she would be singing yet.
"We haven't picked the song yet, but I have a few I've been learning," Anne-Marie said.
After a short introduction, Anne Marie and Mr Knox got up on the Youthie stage and practised a rendition of Michael Jackson's Man in the Mirror.
Anne Marie showed confidence and passion while singing the chorus and said she is still working on the high notes.
During their song Mr Knox encouraged Anne Marie to change the lyrics by singing loudly 'girl in the mirror', saying it would make the song more personal for her to sing that way.
The informal showcase will feature performances from several young people under the direction of Mr Knox as well as a cheeky solo from the Blues artist himself.
You can find out more information about the COVIDSafe showcase by contacting the Youthie.