Trick Pony to play Multiplex

Char Telkamp

Char Telkamp

Brookings will be rocking to a different beat with the appearance of Trick Pony and their special guests, Emerson Drive and Probable Cause this weekend as part of the On A Mission Tour. The tour is part of the promotion for the band’s second album release with the same title.

Trick Pony is a unique name for a unique group that produces a unique, high-energy sound. It is made up of Heidi Newfield (vocals, harmonica and acoustic guitar), Ira Dean (stand-up bass, electric bass and vocals) and Keith Burns (acoustic guitar and vocals).

The group got its start when Burns, who was playing in Joe Diffie’s band and trying to get out of the situation of being a side guy, called his friend Dean, who was playing with Tanya Tucker at the time, about starting a trio. When Burns heard Newfield’s demo tape he knew they’d found the perfect third vocal for the group.

The band perfected their high-energy road show on the honky-tonk circuit for years before breaking out of the gate to country stardom, becoming the best-selling new group of 2001. After honing their skills with non-stop club work, the members of Trick Pony had one thing in mind when recording their albums.

“Our biggest concern goin’ in,”says Newfield,”was to capture the energy live on tape.”

Their self-titled debut release, Trick Pony, is already nearing platinum and is the highest debuting album for a new country duo or goup. Now On A Mission, their second album, aptly describes the attitude of this feisty honky-tonk outfit.

“We had a sense of confidence that we didn’t feel on the first album,” Heidi recalled, “so there wasn’t that sophomore pressure that everyone warned us about.”

When they’re not performing together, Ira, Keith, and Heidi are usually writing songs together.

All combined, the three of them wrote nine of Mission’s 12 tracks. One of the band’s goals is to write all of the songs that appear on their albums.

The key to the group’s success, acoording to Newfield, is that producer Chuck Howard “Let us be us. He captured our live energy.” As a result, Trick Pony have become an instant presence in country music, bringing freshness to the storied, but often-negliected, honky-tonk side of the genre.

The group was named as the best new country artist of the Year by the American Music Awards and was last year’s top new duo or group by the Academy of Country Music in 2001.

Trick Pony is one of today’s most recoginized acts.

The group was chosen for a highly coveted spot on one of the year’s hottest tours, Brooks & Dunn’s CMT-presented Neon Circus & Wild West Show. Known as one of the hardest working bands in country music, Trick Pony has played to more than 1 million fans in the past year.

Trick Pony hits include “Pour Me”, “On A Night Like This”, “Just What I Do” and “On A Misson.”

Tickets for the Nov. 23 concert are on sale at the Multiplex Box Office, Cover to Cover in Brookings, Maynard’s Food Stores in Clear Lake, Elkton and Flandreau, by phone at 1-800-955-5566 or online at