By Kelly Sabetta
Josie Waverly, of Hilton, has been performing since she was a young girl. “My mom had old albums of Connie Francis in a box,” said Josie. “I took them to my room and sang along. From that point on, I knew singing was for me.”
Sparked by the quality of her new inspiration, Josie sang her first solo in church at just 10 years old.
Fast forward to present day, Josie now performs for large audiences across the country with her band. Alongside Josie (lead singer, front entertainer), are band mates Tom Tramontana (lead and acoustic guitar, banjo, vocals), Gene “Sandy” Watson (lead, acoustic, and steel guitar, dobro, fiddle, vocals), Lou Alano (keyboard, vocals), Rich Farmer (bass, vocals), and Dave Forti (drums, percussion).
Josie has performed as a headliner, as well as opening act for entertainers such as Tim McGraw, Charlie Daniels, Loretta Lynn, Rascal Flatts, Keith Urban, and many more. Her work continues to be highlighted.
“I was voted NYS Queen of Country Music, as well as placed on the NYS Country Music Wall of Fame,” said Josie. “The public gives me the best feedback by the standing ovations they give at the end of my shows. They are the best meter to go by when you want to know if you make a difference.”
Along with live performances, Josie is very active in community service. She was also named Hilton’s Citizen of the Year in 1992, and has received several certificates from numerous charitable organizations, in which she helped raise thousands of dollars for their causes.
Her inspiration? “God, for trusting me with such a powerful vocal gift,” she said. “My husband for his belief in my talent and his never ending ‘can-do’ attitude, my children for dealing with having a mom that sings for others, and the public for listening!”
Although she has been recognized for her strong abilities and talents, she expresses that her goal is to make a difference in others. “Singing and entertaining for money is not number one for me,” said Josie. “Seeing everyone have fun and enjoy the music is the most important thing of all! If just one person leaves a Josie performance taking home positive energy and a glimmer of hope; that is what is important. You can’t put a price on making a difference in someone’s life!”
To experience such positive energy and great talent, please visit Josie’s Web site, http://www.josiewaverly.info, and check out her live performance at this year’s Canandaigua Art and Music Festival, Saturday, June 17th, 1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. on the Time Warner Stage.