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    Kari & Billy Come to Waterloo

    Country music has a new couple to admire: Kari Nelson & Billy Arnold. They are a couple out of Nashville who've become known for their original music for the TV show Thirteen. With Kari's talented fiddle playing and Billy's lyrical stylings, they have created some memorable and wonderful music together. Just in time for Valentine's Day, the duo is coming to Waterloo! They are bringing a full, five-piece band to the Isle® for you! Let’s get to know them a little better first!

    Kari Nelson hails from Roseau, Minnesota, and played violin since she was seven. Her background is in classical music, and she took years of lessons at the Manitoba Music Conservatory in Canada. Kari came of age playing music with her sisters at county and state fairs in Minnesota and North Dakota. Her first band experiences were playing with the Nite Riders in her hometown. In September 2006, Kari packed her bags and headed to Nashville.

    Like so many before her, Kari paid her dues working regularly at Tootsies Orchid Lounge and other clubs on Lower Broadway. She traveled with artists on the rodeo circuit in Montana and Alberta, Canada, and played in shows in Maryland, Michigan, Iowa, Georgia, Wisconsin, Virginia, and Alabama, on the college and casino circuits.

    Her bigger breaks came with singer/comedian Dennis Lee on his State Fair tour in 07 and 08. In 2007, she accompanied Nashville Star Laura Sullivan on a USO tour that included stops in Hawaii, Japan, Guam, Diego Garcia and Singapore where they put on shows for American troops. Kari opened for artists, such as Jake Owen, Pat Green, Wynonna Judd and Billy Dean. Kari toured with John Rich/Big & Rich and played with Gretchen Wilson, Steel Magnolias, Trace Adkins and Joanna Smith. Kari performed fiddle and backup vocals for John Rich on the Celebrity Apprentice Finale in May 2011.

    Billy Arnold was born in Tampa, Florida, at MacDill Air Force Base. He grew up hunting, fishing and playing sports. He loves the outdoors. Billy came of age listening to country music legends like Conway Twitty, Alabama, Randy Travis and Merle Haggard. A self-proclaimed shy boy, he never dreamed he'd become a country singer.

    At 18, Billy moved to Georgiana, Alabama, a place he'd frequented as a child. Within a few years he started singing, and everything just clicked. Billy joined a local band, The Backwood Boys, and they started touring the country. Since then, Billy started small in honky tonks, or at fairs or festivals. After a few years on the road, he joined another band, Common Ground. With all the combined work, he's traveled the entire country, from Florida to California to Georgia to Maine.

    Billy moved to Nashville to further pursue his dream of being a singer-songwriter. He played regularly at Tootsie's Orchid Lounge, did some road shows, charity events and acoustic dates. Billy's played with heavies, such as Craig Morgan, Tracy Byrd, Daryle Singletary, Rhett Atkins, Mark Wills, Vern Gosdin, Arron Tippin, Confederate Railroad, Chad Brock, David Kersh and more.

    In 2009 he recorded his album "Do You Remember." Billy wrote and produced all 15 songs on the album, and the song "To Get to You," was a national release on country radio. It was then turned into a video.

    Kari and Billy are now performing as a duo and hope to blend their talents to create something unique and memorable. Their different backgrounds form an eclectic mix. The couple met in Nashville and were drawn together because of their similar tastes, love for music and parallel views. They prefer simplicity in melody, lyrics people can relate to, and making people feel positive. Oh wait! Did we mention the best part… these two recently tied the knot and are now a married singing duo! SURPRISE!

    Call the Isle at 1-877-ISLE-WIN or visit us here to purchase your tickets and reserve your seats for this Valentine’s Day concert!

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