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Husband-Wife Duo Slickside to Perform in Port Richey

Cheryl Bentley The Suncoast News
Published:   |   Updated: May 15, 2013 at 12:35 PM

PORT RICHEY, Fla. - Patrons at the recently opened Port Richey restaurant Fatty 'n' Mabel's can get in touch with their Southern roots with the music of a duo performing there tonight.

Today, Wednesday, Slickside will offer a wide musical menu concentrating on blues, Southern rock and country.

With a bow to the region's numerous Parrotheads, they also include tunes from Jimmy Buffett on their musical menu.

"If you live down here and don't do Buffett, you don't work," said Billy Sandlin, who is one half of the team.

The other half is Billy's wife Jenna Sandlin.

Both Sandlins sing.

Jenna plays percussion, and Billy plays multiple instruments, including lead guitar, fiddle, banjo, mandolin and Dobro.

Billy brings a long history as a musician to the act. His father, Bill Sandlin Sr., was a well-known bluegrass musician who played in the Lonesome Pine Fiddler Band.

"We had every instrument at our house as long as I can remember," Sandlin recalled about his childhood in Birmingham, Ala.

By the time he was 8, he was playing in his father's band.

He eventually went on the road with a bluegrass band.

He has played in recording sessions with such notables as the Marshall Tucker Band. That band earned seven gold and three platinum albums and, in the 1990s, had four hit singles on Billboard's country chart and one on the gospel chart.

He has also worked with record producer Jack Douglas, who produced albums for John Lennon.

"You don't do recording sessions with those people unless you know what you're doing," Billy noted.

Jenna grew up in Pittsburgh singing contemporary Christian songs.

The couple lives in Dunedin. Along with their performing work, they also make guitars.

Tonight marks their second performance at Fatty 'n' Mabel's.

They will be there from 6 to 10 p.m.

The restaurant, formerly Sandals, is at 5245 Limestone Drive, Port Richey, 727-847-6360.