The list of top-shelf country music acts from New Jersey may be a short one, but situated at the top are Baillie & The Boys. The 1980s chart-toppers will make Rahway a stop on their 25th Anniversary Tour with a special “Homecoming Concert” this Saturday, March 15 at 8 p.m. at Hamilton Stage, 360 Hamilton Street. Alyssa Bonagura opens.
Tickets are $25 and are available online at www.ucpac.org, or by calling (732) 499-8226.
Lead singer Kathie Baillie is a Morristown native who teamed up in the late 1970s with husband Michael Bonagura (Newark) and Alan LeBoeuf (Warren) to form the trio Bittersweet, the folkrock forerunner of Baillie & The Boys.
The band got its Nashville foothold in the early ’80s by singing backup on records by Ed Bruce, Dan Seals and Randy Travis, with Bonagura co-writing a hit for Marie Osmond. Baillie & The Boys’ 1987 debut album on RCA Records produced three Top 20 country singles; their followup LP Turn The Tide had four consecutive Top 10 hits, including Heart of Stone.
Now recording on independent labels, Baillie & The Boys feature as their opening act Kathie and Michael’s daughter Alyssa Bonagura, a talented singer/songwriter and rising star who made her recording debut at age 11 on a Kenny Rogers Christmas album and has written hits for Jo Dee Messina, Sarah Jarosz, Raquel Castro and Tyler Ward.