Lorie Line returning to Memorial Auditorium stage
MINNETONKA — Lorie Line doesn’t have a long commute to work. She and husband Tim Line recently moved their business office into their home, which is situated on Lake Minnetonka, so her trek to work is down a flight of stairs.
On this particular morning, she doesn’t even make that jaunt, conducting press interviews in advance of her upcoming “Intimate Evening Series” tour from their upstairs living quarters.
“Our whole lower level is set up for business,” she explained. “We have three offices, and even an employee kitchen. We should have done it years ago.”
Line — who started her career serenading shoppers in Dayton’s department stores in the Twin Cities — is celebrating her 25th year of touring as a professional musician. Her musical enterprise boasts 45 CDs and 40 books of music. She has sold 6 million albums and performed on more than 2,000 stages.
“There are some musicians out there who have toured 25 years, but what’s unique is I’ve toured for 25 consecutive years,” she noted. “I’ve never taken a year off. I still enjoy it just as much as I ever have.”
The current tour kicks off next week, including an April 26 stop at Worthington’s Memorial Auditorium Performing Arts Center. It’s a smaller-scale endeavor than some of the shows she’s mounted in the past.
“We don’t have four semi trucks and buses and 12 musicians any more, because of the economy, but I still put on a big fabulous show,” she said. “Now I’m down to the Fab 5, which makes it more manageable. Five musicians instead of 12 is so much more doable.”
Many of the musicians with whom she has worked in the past are now retired or don’t want to undertake a tour anymore, so she’s recruited some younger cohorts.
“The Fab 5 are all super young, ranging in age from 22 to 26,” she explained. “All of them have or are getting degrees in music, except for one who is self-taught. They are all very serious about music. We have a pretty big choreography scene in the show, so they can sing, they can dance, they can play.”
With Line on the piano, the Fab 5 add violin, trombone, drums, bass and guitar to the musical mix.
“It’s like a recipe. They are all unique and different, and when you put them all together, it makes a beautiful cake. They’re all my kids’ age,” explained Line, mother of two and now an empty nester with their son attending Augustana College in Sioux Falls, S.D. “... It’s hard to make a living making music, so I have one of the best jobs to offer.”
For other tours, Line has released a CD in advance and taken to the road to promote it.
“This time I’m promoting the music and then coming back and making the CD,” she said. “This is the first time I’ve ever had the opportunity to play it 18 times in front of a live audience. I’m playing music from ‘Frozen’ and ‘Downton Abbey,’ then I’ll record that music when I get home this summer. With it being the 50th anniversary of the Beatles’ first performance in the United States, I’ve also got a new Beatles album out, so I’ll be playing a few tunes from that. I’ve also got a brand new music book, “The Early Years,” for which I went back to early in my career and published music that I played early on and never published. I just recorded it, didn’t publish a book back then. … It’s this big music book of like 130 pages. It just came off the press two weeks ago.”
Line’s fans are invited to bring along their music books and CDs, and following the concert Line will be in the lobby to sign them and pose for photographs.
Lorie Line and Her Fab Five, the Intimate Evening Series, will begin at 7:30 p.m. April 26 at Memorial Auditorium Performing Arts Center, 914 13th St., Worthington. Tickets are available at the auditorium box office from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday; phone: 376-9101.
Daily Globe Features Editor Beth Rickers may be reached at 376-7327.