Brett and Apryll Walker left jobs years ago to embrace their musical careers, touring across the country.
They took their children with them. Seven children, in fact.
Redhead Express & The Walker Family will perform Tuesday at Wagner Noel Performing Arts Center in the Live on Stage Permian Basin series. Redhead Express — consisting of sisters Kendra, LaRae, Alisa and Meghan, who range in age from their teens to early 20s — performs several genres of music, including county, bluegrass, folk, swing, Gospel, jazz, patriotic, pop and original artists. The family uses a variety of instruments, such as guitar, upright bass, banjo, mandolin, fiddle, electric bass and electric guitar.
The Walkers’ sons — Sean, Joseph and Ammon (The Walker Boys) — contribute their voices to various songs. Brett and Apryll also perform. All of the children play instruments and sing.
The concert at Wagner Noel represents the family’s first journey to the Permian Basin, Apryll Walker said during a telephone interview Wednesday afternoon from Wichita, Kan.
The family hails from Alaska, tours across the country and has been performing for about five years. In Texas, the Walkers have been to Dallas, Houston, Rio Grande Valley and Wichita Falls.
“I love seeing new places and I’m just curious what it looks like there,” Apryll Walker said coming to the Permian Basin. “I’ve never even driven through there.”
The Walkers have homeschooled their children, so “that just made it easy to take off and decide to do this,” Apryll Walker said. The youngest child is Ammon, 10, and the oldest is Kendra, 22.
Brett was involved in real estate business before the Walkers decided to go on tour. The family also worked with Brett in his business, Apryll Walker said.
“I taught piano lessons for years and did a lot of accompanying for schools and community choir and things like that,” Apryll Walker said.
For Live on Stage, all of the Walkers sing and perform in the show, which takes the audience on a journey through some of America’s “roots” music, such as bluegrass, old time mountain music, Irish and old country music, Apryll Walker said.
“We add in some of the girls’ new country and we try to give them a flavor of different types of American acoustic music,” Apryll Walker said.
The family has done six self-produced records, with one of those recordings coming from The Walker Boys. Apryll Walker said. Redhead Express has gone to Nashville to work on its career, she said.
She said crowds have enjoyed seeing her whole family perform music together, and the Walkers have garnered fans across the country.
“It’s definitely a high-energy show,” Apryll Walker said, explaining that fans will hear a variety of American roots music. “They will maybe learn a little something but it will be a lot of fun at the same time. They’ll get to hear everybody sing and play. “