Atlanta band Nikki & The Phantom Callers are an eclectic mix of country, gothic rock and honky-tonk

Nikki Speake, lead band member of Nikki & The Phantom Callers. (Courtesy of Paula Harding)

On City Lights’ series “Speaking of Music,” local musicians share work and stories in their own voices. Today we feature Nikki Speake, the Atlanta band Nikki & the Phantom Callers lead member. 

Speake serves the band primarily as a singer, which is her primary instrument, but also as a songwriter. She also skillfully plays rhythm guitar, bass, and mandolin. She describes the band’s sound as an eclectic mix of Country, Rock, and Honky-tonk. “It’s not really country, it’s not really rock,” says Speake. “There’s some punk elements in there as well. Our drummer… calls it ‘country adjacent.’”

Musically, Speake started singing in church as a child and, beginning in her early 20s, joined many different bands which led her to ultimately create her own. 

In Atlanta, Speake likes to visit venues like The Earl, 529 Bar, Star Bar, and The Tabernacle to hear live music. Nikki & The Phantom Callers are performing Sunday, March 12th, at Smith’s Olde Bar with Paisley Fields.

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