To narrow down to a mere "seven artist I can't live without" is almost impossible.  Growing up in Memphis provided constant exposure to many types of  live music including gospel, the blues, jazz, rock 'n' roll  as well as contemporary.  Beale Street was (and is) the place to go for music and BBQ, which could explain my addition to both. The Coliseum and Mud Island (ugly name, cool place) consistently offered a fabulous variety of artist. Mud Island, being surrounded by evening stars and the cool breeze of the mighty, rolling Mississippi River, became my favorite venue -- there's nothing in the world like it for outdoor concerts.

Anyway, after significant thought, I would have to say these are seven of my faves:

  • 1

    James Taylor

    James Taylor, always our vacation music -- probably because he wasn't too loud or rowdy for my parents during those long drives to Florida or Arkansas in the family station wagon.

  • 2

    Keith Green

    Keith Green -- An American Contemporary Christian artist, who was equally talented writing music and lyrics, playing the piano, singing and speaking. The energy and excitement Keith brought to his audience made you want to be a part and stay a part of his ministry.  Songs like "Your Love Broke Through", "Make My Life A Prayer To You" and "The Lord Is My Shepherd" changed my life.

  • 3

    Billy Joel

    Billy Joel, a true PIANO MAN, loved Memphis and held many concerts  there. After the concerts, he often frequented Beale Street where he'd play the piano and sing just for FUN!

  • 4

    The Eagles

    The Eagles, one of my first concerts (I wasn't even a teenager yet) with my two older brothers is one of favorite memories.  The music, the lights, the talent..we're talking sensory overload! This five band member phenominon are one of the most successful musical acts of the 70's. With over 5 number one songs, 6 Grammy's and  5 American Music Awards, this genre crossover (Rock and Country) band came to entertain. With songs like "Take It To The Limit", "Love Will Keep Us Alive" and "One Of These Nights" it's no wonder they have staying power like few in the industry.  So anytime I am feeling nostalgic, it's time to put on the Eagles.

  • 5

    Elvis Presley

    Elvis Presley, one of the most famous Memphians and one of the best looking men EVER! I was not a fan until I saw him live in concert.  Elvis really did put a show like no other.  When the "king of rock and roll" finished singing "Love Me Tender" he made it feel like he was singing ONLY to me.  And after he sang "How Great Thou Art"  I became one of those crazy women just trying to touch his flashy outfit or catch one of his famous sweaty scarves.

  • 6

    The Beatles

    The Beatles - being too young to be on the first blush of their fame, my older brother Butch played their albums almost every day. Their style and their music was exciting and new then and has endured the test of time with a unique sound that still thrills me today.

  • 7

    Van Morrison

    Van Morrison - Northern Irish singer and songwriter who sold millions of albums, received six Grammy Awards, inducted in Rock and Roll's Hall of Fame in '93. But, you can never pigeon hold this man as he's as much a Jazz artist as he is Rock and Roll.  Some of my favorites include the poetic "Someone like You", the cheery "Bright Side of the Road", the romantic "Have I Told You Lately" and the melodious "Whenever God Shines His Light"  keep this man in a class of his own.   His latest album "Born to Sing - No Plan B" says it all about this man and his career.