Thomas Duo to Entertain Tonight By Tony Lane
Today Aileen and Elkin Thomas will perform on campus for the Richland College All School Picnic. When this duo sings, people listen.
Now that doesn't sound like anything out of the ordinary, but there is something else. When Aileen and Elkin sing, people smile. They unconsciously, inadvertently smile themselves into a state of euphoria, that infamous feeling of well-being. Such is the effect that Aileen and Elkin have on people.
I have often wondered about this effect as I, too, have been the proud bearer of such beaming grins. I am told that smiling is contagious, and since Aileen and Elkin do more than their share of showing the old pearly whites during a performance, one might assume that the adage is certainly a truism in this case. But I don't think that truism really says it all.
Aileen and Elkin do more than just smile on stage. They radiate a wholesome, spiritualistic attitude towards living, and this is what is contagious. Their songs reflect their religious beliefs, their love for human life, their love for all things in nature, and most importantly their love for themselves and each other.
When Aileen and Elkin occupy the stage, they make that place their home, and the audience is made to feel welcome in that home. The Thomases don't stand during a performance, nor do they sit on tall bar stools. Naturally, they sit in chairs just as if they were sitting in their own living room playing some personal tunes for a few close friends. That in itself is great cause to smile.
It is comforting to listen to Aileen and Elkin -- a comfort in knowing that there is still somebody who believes in something and is willing to support that belief. Elkin's songs are about God, common man, farmers, lovers, aunts and uncles, country living and home cooking. His songs are poetic, yet unpretentious and down to earth. They are down home and out on the road songs -- home grown in every sense.
Aileen and Elkin met in Nashville when she asked him to help her out with an audition by playing some guitar on an old Tom Paxton song. How fitting that they should meet under those circumstances. They've been helping each other out ever since. I strongly suggest checking them out; after all, it's worth at least a smile.