Sophie B. Hawkins in Blowing Rock
Let the festivities of the Fourth begin.
Star of stage and studio Sophie B. Hawkins will perform a special concert at the annual Fourth of July celebration at Westglow Resort & Spa in Blowing Rock next Friday.
The event features a concert with Hawkins and opening act BETTY, a buffet prepared by the chefs at Rowland’s Restaurant and a fireworks display.
The show is part of this year’s An Appalachian Summer Festival, and tickets are on sale now.
Sophie B. Hawkins
Sophie B. Hawkins burst onto the pop music scene in 1992 with the hit single, “Damn I Wish I Was Your Lover,” off of her debut album, “Tongues and Tails.”
The song climbed to No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles charts, and Hawkins was nominated for a Grammy in the Best New Artist category in 1993.
She followed up that single with two others that charted, “Right Beside You” and “As I Lay Me Down.”
More recently, Hawkins performed on stage in a tribute to Janis Joplin, titled “Room 105,” that had lengthy stage runs in New York City and Los Angeles. Her latest album, “The Crossing,” was released in 2012 and contains all new original material.
In a phone interview, Hawkins said she is looking forward to returning to Westglow as part of this year’s An Appalachian Summer Festival.
“Westglow is just my favorite place in the universe,” Hawkins said. “I love the mountains in North Carolina, and so much has happened to me since I was last there four or five years ago.”
Hawkins said that in addition to performing the lead in “Room 105,” she has written a book and also songs for a new movie.
“‘Room 105’ was a wonderful experience for me,” Hawkins said. “We toured with the show for over a year. When I did Janis, it was so different than anything else I’ve done in my career. I actually had people who were friends with Janis come up to me and said that I really captured part of her spirit, which is the highest compliment I can receive.”
For her show at Westglow, Hawkins said that she will perform songs from “Room 105,” plus songs from the entirety of her career, along with new material hardly anyone has heard thus far.
“Live I am at my best,” Hawkins said. “I am purest, most unselfconscious, most brave and appreciative when I am on stage. It’s life times a thousand. I love connecting with my music to people and letting them come into my creative sphere, which becomes mutual. It’s a spiritual experience, always challenging and surprising.”
When not singing, recording or touring, Hawkins is involved with a number of causes that are near and dear to her heart. She is an active member of the RiverKeepers Alliance, an organization led by Robert F. Kennedy Jr. that has a strong presence in her native New York State and in the mountains of North Carolina.
Hawkins is also concerned about homeless dogs and cats and recently performed a concert in Florida to help raise money for homeless animal shelters.
“Sometimes in my songwriting, I can get somewhat political,” Hawkins said. “But what I’m trying to do is shine a light on humanity at its best.”
For more than two decades, the New York City-based band, BETTY, has been creating cutting-edge alternative rock with a message.
Originally from Washington, D.C., the band features Elizabeth Ziff on guitar and vocals, Alyson Palmer on bass and vocals and Amy Ziff on cello and vocals, with the band occasionally rounded out with Tony Salvatore on lead guitar and Mino Gori on drums.
BETTY is known for spine-tingling vocal harmonies and well-crafted original songs. The band’s first studio album was 1994’s “Hello, BETTY!,” followed by “Limboland” (1996), ‘betty3” (1999) and “Carnival” (2000).
In 2002, the band released “BETTY RULES: The Original Cast Recording.” It gave fans a first taste of their ability to incorporate elements of Broadway musicals into their music. The album features all three lead vocalists taking a crack at the song, “I Met Someone,” with three distinctly different results.
The music was taken from the band’s 2002 off-Broadway stage show of the same name, which was directed by “Rent” director Michael Greif.
In addition to the band’s stage work, BETTY has been consistently relied upon for soundtrack work for both the big screen and television. BETTY’s music has been heard on “Weeds,” “Love Bites,” “Remote Control” and “Ms. Adventure,” among others. They also wrote and performed the theme songs for HBO’s “Real Sex” and Showtime’s “The L Word” series.
ASU’s An Appalachian Summer Festival and Westglow Resort and Spa’s Fourth of July concert featuring Sophie B. Hawkins and BETTY, plus fireworks and buffet from Rowland’s Restaurant, will begin at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, July 4, at Westglow Resort in Blowing Rock.
Tickets are $125 per person and can be purchased by calling Westglow at (828) 295-5146.