Al Roop took a sip from his drink before he started talking about local music artist Caitie Thompson.
She’s a regular performer at the Roops Bar, 17 N. Union St., formerly Roop Brothers Bar when Roop owned it. He’s known Thompson, a 2006 Delaware Hayes High School alumna, since she was a teenager, performing as a drummer with the Rip City Rockers.
Thompson was one of the band’s few members including her sister, Leslie Alexander, who continued to perform.
“They stuck with it,” Roop said. “… They have all my respect.”
Using colorful language, he said Thompson worked extremely hard to achieve her goals.
In her latest endeavor, Thompson goes solo with a release party of her extended play album “Enough” at 8:30 p.m. Saturday at Roops, which she considers her home base. Coya Hill, a local southern rock band, will perform as a special guest followed by Thompson with The Hallows’ bass player Anthony Sellers and drummer Eric Maes.
It’s “going to be a wonderful night of Delaware musicians,” she said.
Thompson’s EP has an eclectic mix of four songs, which were recorded at Vaughn Music Studios in Upper Arlington. Thompson personally recorded every instrument and vocal track on the EP. Mark Abrams from the studio engineered and produced the project.
“It was probably one of the coolest experiences I ever had,” she said.
Josh Moore, one of Roops’ current owners, said he’s proud to support local musicians and hopes the party will sell some albums.
“It’s her day,” he said.
Following the release, Thompson will travel on April 12 to Chelmsford, England, where her folk rock and country alternative-style of music has received attention and airtime from the Chelmsford Community Radio Station on its Folk Union program.
Her family owns an apartment in Richmond, which is two hours away from Chelmsford.
“Things just kind of fell into place,” Thompson said.
Thompson and her sister learned to sing hymns at the kitchen table with their mother. She didn’t see herself performing in the long run, but thought she would manage a manage a studio or to continue her education. Thompson’s family was supportive and adamant that she continued to perform especially after she received her degree in the music industry from Capital University.
Four years of “college burnt me out really bad,” Thompson said.
Since 2011, she and her sister have performed together as the Lucky Penny Sisters and were often the backup for open mic nights at Roops.
“We’ve been gigging strongly for the last six years in central Ohio,” Thompson said. She also traveled to Nashville and Texas as a lead guitarist for local artist Dominic Francesco.
Roop agreed. He said Thompson and Alexander pursued gigs aggressively and considers them true professionals and “rockers.”
“I’ve had a couple shots of tequila to watch them along the way,” he said.
Gazette reporter Brandon Klein can be reached by email or on Twitter at @brandoneklein.