Three cheers!

MIKE ROSS

, Last Updated: 10:24 PM ET

EDMONTON -- While it's tempting to paint any female country trio as a Dixie Chicks clone, it's really a moot point.

Three female vocalists singing in more or less perfect harmony is nothing new, and you can't deny the appeal - both musically and visually.

"It's very entertaining to watch three girls and it's something that has always been entertaining, when you go back to Diana Ross and the Supremes," says Lace founder Beverley Mahood. "It's not necessarily that there's girls on stage. It is that sound that's created, the three-part harmony. It's pretty infectious."

Experience Lace live Sunday (4 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.) on the Telus Stage as part of Klondike Days. Admission is free with your Klondike Days pass.

As for the origins of this female country trio, Mahood rankles at the phrase "put together by David Foster." It didn't happen quite like that, she says. Foster, now a record executive as well as a producer, signed Mahood to a multi-album deal back in 1997. One of his first ideas was an all-girl country group.

"This is before Dixie Chicks were even out," Mahood says. "So I flew to L.A., and at that time he had some girls for me to listen to. There were about 10 different girls we narrowed it down to. It was supposed to be three other girls, plus me, and I was to pick the other girls.

"So I left that day going, 'you know what? This is not what I wanted.' He knew something was wrong. You can find people who can sing, but it's hard to find people who can sing harmony and do it very well. And it just wasn't working that day.

"So David said, 'What can I do to keep you here?' And I said, 'My best friend should be here. My friend Giselle (she uses her first name professionally) can sing a third above me perfectly and she should be here.' So Giselle was in L.A. the next day and that was it."

Add another singer (more on that in a moment) and Lace was born.

Problem was - well, it wasn't exactly a problem; it may have even helped - the Dixie Chicks suddenly became huge.

Almost immediately, a wave of clones followed and Lace kind of got caught up in the flood.

"It's funny," Mahood says.

"It helped, but you kind of wish that you were the first ones out, where people weren't going, 'OK, so you're trying to be the Dixie Chicks,' or in Canada, 'You're trying to be Farmer's Daughter.'

"But I think we do have something very different and very unique about the three of us in our music that hopefully people get to know when they hear our record or come to see us live."

Fans will notice a new face in Lace. Singer Corbi Dyann is out, Stacey Lee is in. It happened just prior to the last Juno Awards - where Lace was up for best country group.

"I think (Dyann) is somebody who really didn't enjoy the touring," Mahood says.

"And this business is all about touring. It's one thing to have your song on the radio and CMT, but people want to get to know you and the only way to do that is to see you live.

"She didn't enjoy that as much we do. Stacey is so into it."

The transition was seamless. Mahood says the idea that formed the group to begin with - three singers who can harmonize and get along together - remains intact.

"It feels totally natural.

"It almost feels that this is how it should've been from the beginning, not putting down any of the other members that were part of the group before.

"This feels like three different people in this group.

"We like very different music.

"You're always learning from the other people, and that helps you to grow.

"Stacey is the first person I've ever met who travels with a George Jones box set. She's opened me up to a lot of things, the old country. I like all the new country from growing up.

"And I always like to say, I'm going to leave it up to the listener and what they think."

"You'd think there never was any other way."


Videos

Photos