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May 24, 2013

Kicking it to the next level

Local band Liz Frame and the Kickers plans mid-Atlantic tour

John Lennon once wrote, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” But sometimes, those plans can come back for you.

Newburyport’s Liz Frame, 53, grew up listening to such musicians as B.B. King, Jimmie Rodgers, The Weavers and Elvis Presley and wrote her first song at age 9. She has been performing, in one way or another, what she likes to call Americana music ever since she picked up her first guitar at 14, pursuing music seriously from her mid-20s to her mid-30s, playing in Nashville, Tenn., and making recordings.

But then life happened.

“I just got burnt out after a while,” Frame admits of her early attempts at being a full-time musician. “I said, ‘I’m done trying. I don’t want to do it anymore.’ And at that point, I had already moved to Newburyport. I wasn’t in the city anymore.”

Indeed, as a mother and the owner of a popular local gift shop, Fancy Schmancy, Frame had to focus on the day-to-day but never lost sight of her first love.

“I came to the realization a little bit late, after already having been married and having a kid, that I wanted to be a performing musician,” Frame said. “You can do it then, but it’s tougher. And it wasn’t until my mom passed away six years ago that I realized that life is really short. I love making music; let’s get back out there and start doing it.”

A little added heartache helped Frame along the way when her shop closed a year ago. Frame had never stopped playing gigs, even putting together a band, Liz Frame and the Kickers, along the way. But now, she had more time on her hands and some good-sized ambition to go with it, as she and the Kickers plan to embark on a two-week, mid-Atlantic tour this summer to promote their new five-song live EP recorded at the Firehouse Center for the Performing Arts.

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