PLYMOUTH — You couldn’t blame Autumn Leed if she thought she was living in a Hollywood screenplay.
Searching for a new act to sign to his management company, Tony Priano of IT management found himself in a local factory, looking for a voice that he had heard eight years earlier.
“He came to the factory I worked at looking for ‘somebody who can sing named Amber or something,’” said Autumn. “Somebody said, ‘We have an Autumn who sings’ — and that was when everything chan-ged.”
Priano had heard Leed sing at a retirement party many years ago, and something about her stuck with him. He introduced the young singer to Bob Angello, owner and producer at Country Is Records, an independent label in Nashville, and the rest — as they say — is history.
One of eight children, Autumn and her husband Robert are lifelong residents of Marshall County and own a farm south of Argos. The significance of the moment isn’t lost on her.
“I’ve been keeping track of everything — lots of details and dates and everything that’s happening,” she said. “I’ve got a journal with all the things that have been going on. I don’t want to forget anything about any of this.”
Her first CD is now available and while some might consider her discovery an “accident” another accident has provided her with one of her favorite tracks on the album.
“My producer leaned back when we were recording and hit a button or something in the studio and a song started playing,” she said. “I asked him what it was and he told me it was a song by Jeff Knight called ‘Real Good Thing.’ I told him I wanted that song. The next day I talked him into recording it and everybody loved it. I guess you could say it was a real good thing that accident happened.”
Autumn is hardly a newcomer to the local music scene playing with her bandmates in the Yellow River Band (Greg and Bonnie Misner, Matt McFarland, Mike Leed and Kristel Anderson) for many years. Playing a normal gig at Wings, Etc. with the band Wednesday, Autumn looked forward to the coming year that will see her opening for Diamond Rio and Phil Vassar as well as touring Japan and the UK.
This Saturday, she and the Yellow River Band will be playing at the Newton Center in Lakeville starting at 7 p.m.
“It’s all really positive and I’m trying to be level headed so I don’t get my heart hurt,” she said with a laugh. “I can’t help but feel my mom (Barbara Jean who died in 2005) has been right here for all of it. She was the first one who ever believed in me and encouraged me. It’s really all about her.”