Artist Interview: The McAllisters
Tell us about yourself and your music
I am Dewayne McAllister Sr, a songwriter/arranger vocalist and music educator. I”m presently working on a project with my siblings who are musicians, vocalists, and music educators as well. The project is entitled “Once Upon A December Eve”, a holiday performance held on December 16th at the Max Fisher Auditorium in Detroit, Michigan. This performance features a diverse collection of music of the Christmas season. Genres include classical, big band, acoustical (with harp), orchestral and traditional pieces performed by us, The McAllisters with live musicians. We love celebrating the Christmas season with enthusiastic audiences who embrace this wonderful time of year. A number of attendees of previous performances often comment about the fun and great music they hear. Anticipation of another great performance is mounting as this will be the eleventh consecutive year for the “Once Upon A December Eve” event. All ages are normally in attendance as we attempt to offer an exciting performance that appeals to everyone. My siblings include Willie McAlliste Jr, the Maestro and lead guitarist, Alice McAllister Tillman, vocalist and Peter McAllister, drummer. “Once Upon A December Eve” brings concertgoers from various locations like Lansing, Gd. Blanc, Ann Arbor, Richmond and Metro Detroit.
Talk to us more about your latest release
The “Once Upon A December Eve” Souvenir CD is a collection of songs our audience enjoyed hearing us perform in previous “Once Upon A December Eve” concerts. It wasn’t an easy choice to make because there were quite a few songs on their favorites list. Songs on this CD include “Once Upon A December, “Little Drummer Boy”, Christmastime Is Here”, I Wonder As I Wonder”, “Sleigh Ride”, “Doremah” , “Hold On To Christmas”, and “There’s Still My Joy On Christmas Day”.
What inspired you to write this release?
We received numerous request from attendees of our performances to be able to listen to us repeatedly at their leisure.
Any plans to release a video?
We are looking to release a video of the “Once Upon A December Eve” performance sometime in 2018.
Any plans to hit the road?
As an indie artist, how do you brand yourself and your music to stand out from the rest of the artists out there?
We try an remain as original as possible. We know there are a lot of musical influences out there to which so many indie artist pattern themselves after. However, we remain constantly aware that God gave us the talents He assigned to us for a specific reason. And this is to share our music with them in our unique way, so that when we are heard live or recordings people immediately know who they are listening to. Lastly, we purpose to create our own sound and stick with it and grow it in the process.
Who have you been listening to lately?
Truly no one in particular. As with the news sometimes you have to take a break from the things you hear within the music community on a daily basis and focus more on what you are trying to accomplish musically within yourself.
Tell us about your passions
A drive to help others in a way that please God.
What else is happening next in your world?
Thanks for an awesome interview, Dewayne!