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  • Writer's pictureMary Ann

Thirsty Thursday Featuring Kristine Kabbes

You recently released your new single, "Beer Bottle Microphone" that you also co-wrote. Tell us about the writing process and where the idea came from.

With my new single, “Beer Bottle Microphone,” my friends Dave McAfee (drums) and Dave Smith (guitar) of Toby Keith’s Easy Money Band helped produce and write this song. My husband and bass player, Mike Dittmer came to me with this song idea, “Beer Bottle Microphone,” because we see this all the time at our shows. I thought it was a great idea and sat down with it. I had an idea for the melody and a verse and chorus, but it wasn’t finished. I wasn’t sure how to end the story. So we brought it to our cowrite with McAfee and Smith and they were what it needed! We finished the story out and completed the song. As we went along with the recording process we just kept tweaking and fine tuning until we got what you hear now. We are thrilled with the final product. How was it filming the video for "Beer Bottle Microphone?"

We are currently working on a music video for the single - looking to release it in July. It was very excited shooting this particular music video because we used green screen and AI technology to create our stage and audience. We also shot some fun scenes at one of my favorite bars in Nashville called Legends Corner. One of my favorite parts of a music video is figuring out my costumes. I love fashion, and I get to be a little more adventurous in videos because I don’t have to worry about the practicality of the clothes like I do on stage at live shows.

Where did you grow up and how has that influenced your style of music? I grew up in Southern Indiana. I think the Midwest very much influenced my sound. My music is considered pretty traditional country and I think that comes from growing up on a farm. Yet, it also has this Americana country sound that is different than southern country. Aside from singing do you play any instruments?

I play both piano and acoustic guitar. Do you have any pre-show rituals?

My pre-show ritual is to sit in quiet for a while and to chug a sugar free Red Bull before going on. I need the quiet for my mind because it’s a lot of fun on stage, but I am also very focused on the crowd and my performance. Also, I’m about to be engulfed in loud music for hours. I like to let my ears have a break so they are fresh when I get on stage.

How do you drink your coffee?

I drink my coffee one of two ways: Hot black with a splash of milk or Iced with almond milk and just one pump of vanilla. What is one food that most people seem to like, but you cannot stand to eat.

Everyone always loves ranch dressing and I just can’t stand it. I don’t mind so much ranch flavored things like Cool Ranch Doritos… it’s just the dressing that I don’t like. What's your favorite fast food chain?

My favorite fast food chain is Taco Bell. I am a cheesy Gordita crunch and cheesy fiesta potatoes girly. Where do you shop and name 3 items that are always in your grocery cart.

My favorite grocery store is Aldi. Three things I always have in my cart are Franks Red Hot, lots of cheese, and ice cream.

Finally, if you could be sponsored by one food/drink brand who would it be and why? If I could be sponsored by one food or beverage brand it would have to be Tito’s Vodka. My go-to drink is Tito’s and sugar free Red Bull. I like that I can drink Tito’s and my head is still in the game, but I’m a little looser. It makes for a better performance on my end.

Facebook: Kristine Kabbes & the Skallywags

Instagram: @kristinekabbes

Youtube: Kristine Kabbes & the Skallywags

Kristine Kabbes grew up roaming the farm land of Aurora, Indiana. At a very young age, Kristine's parents encouraged her love of both music and a country lifestyle. Like many great singers, Kristine got her start singing hymns in the church choir. Her success as a young child in the church choir prompted her to explore different artistic expressions such as local theatre groups, show choir and musical dramaturgy around the Greater Cincinnati area. By the time Kristine became a teenager, she was the desired performer of the National Anthem at air shows, festivals and other events in the Tri-State area.

Kristine attended Columbia College in Chicago where she studied Music Business and Vocal Performance and graduated with Honors. While at Columbia, she commissioned the band Strange on Display as session players for the recording of her solo album. Kristine was so impressed by the raw talent of the band that she invited them to be her exclusive backing band for live performances. In Strange on Display Kristine found mutual passion and support. She also found her now husband and bass player, Michael Dittmer.

When tragedy took the life of Kristine's good friend and drummer, she and the band decided to take a short break to grieve and later came together and unified as The Skallywags. The rising popularity of the band led them to move to Nashville, Tennessee. They fell in love with Music City and have been based out of the city ever since.

In 2020, they rebranded; transforming The Skallywags into the solo artist, Kristine Kabbes. While Kristine is recognized as a solo artist, she still utilizes The Skallywags as her backup band during live performances. Kristine keeps busy touring, writing and working on various recording projects. She has shared the stage with many artists including Carly Pearce, The Cadillac Three, Parmalee, Diamond Rio, Casey James, Clint Black, Wynonna Judd, Lorrie Morgan, Collin Raye and Bret Michaels.

When Kristine is not working she spends her time outdoors, hiking with her dog, and spending time with family and close friends. You will always find wine in her refrigerator, boots in her closet and music in her heart.


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