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Country Music Artist, Raquel Renner was born in the quiet lake district of Medford, New Jersey but spent most of her childhood in Southern Florida, where she grew up on a farm and learned to ride horses and tend to the everyday needs of a working ranch. “I really wanted to be a ‘city girl’ but that wasn’t really working out for me living on 10 acres out in the boondocks!” she says.
However, country music was in her blood from the time she was small having been exposed to the twangy sounds of artists like Merle Haggard, and Hank Williams, whom her father enjoyed. “Every weekend, my dad had Hank on the radio. I knew every word to every song and my very favorite was “Hey Good Looking.”’
As she matured, Raquel deviated from her old country roots, and started performing live in local theater productions as well as in the ballet where she was classically trained.
“There was a time when I believed that I would be a Prima ballerina and that would be my life, but then when I was in middle school, I was given the lead solo in a Christmas play. When I saw the reaction of the crowd to my performance, dance no longer meant as much to me.”
The daughter of artistic parents, (her mother was a dancer and her father was and Interior Designer and artist), music was simply in her blood. Raquel’s uncle, John Renner, traveled and played with the ‘Beach Boys’ for almost 30 years. She says, “My Aunt and Uncle were Vegas entertainers for years and had a big influence over me. I recall my Aunt Suzie, sitting down at the piano with me giving me voice instructions when I was a child. I was so enamored with her voice. It was pure beauty.”
There was always music in The Renner home; everything from Jazz, to pop, to reggae and of course, country, and the artist says the family sang and danced and performed together. (Referring to a younger brother and two older sisters as well). “One of the coolest times in my life was high school when me and both of my sisters were all part of an elite show choir and were able to sing together and perform all over the country in competitions and shows. I had a music professor who encouraged me and frequently took us to churches where I was immersed in Gospel music and learned what it meant to have “soul.” That’s when I really learned to sing and belt out a song. That’s when I learned what I was made of.”
Raquel’s first recording was of all things, a Jazz standard CD called “Wait for me.” Having performed for a few years in swanky restaurants and clubs the artists says it seemed “fitting.” The record is a beautiful compilation of live music, complete with the sultry sounds of the singer’s powerful voice combined with Saxophone and Trumpet, played by artist, John Lovell, of Jimmy Buffett fame.
“That record is what I felt led to do at that time in my life. I was performing all of these classic Jazz Standards and people were asking for an album. I am very proud of that collection, but country music has definitely become front and center in my life now.”
Raquel has performed at the famed venue ‘SunFest,’ which takes place on the waterfront in West Palm Beach, Florida and draws a crowd of around 300,000 people daily. “I was honored to sing back-up for a local act I was involved in at the time and we opened for the 90’s Rock band, ‘The Wallflowers.’ That was one of the best days in my life. I met Jimmy Buffett and Kate Hudson on the backlot where we all had our trailers, and I never felt more alive. It was an amazing experience for me.”
Currently, Raquel performs in South Florida and specifically all over Palm Beach County in local clubs and restaurants performing not only country music, but also a wide variety of everything from Jazz Standards, R&B, Pop and even some classic rock songs. This versatile artist has also performed the National Anthem for 12 different sports teams. “I am a BIG sports girl and absolutely love The NBA as well as Major League Baseball and Football. I am the girl that has “Sports center” alerts sent to my phone. I’ll do anything for free tickets so performing the anthem is not only an honor, but also a no brainer for me!”
In 2010 Raquel Released her first country original called “Cry” along with a music video (which can be found on iTunes and on YouTube) and was the artist’s first attempt at writing and producing. “I really had little experience in actually writing a song although lyrics are really my forte. I am not sure the music does my voice or who I am justice and the song has understandably been criticized, but I am very proud of those lyrics. They are mine and they reveal my true-life circumstances at the time, and the video is absolutely beautiful. The best part is that I got to showcase my own horse “Cody” in it!”
Raquel recently returned from Nashville, Tennessee where she recorded several original country tunes at Hilltop Recording Studio and performed at the world famous “Tootsies.” Her new songs are due to be released in the upcoming months. Her brand new original song “Something Gets Broken” is a combination of honky-tonk fun and tongue in cheek real life humor, guaranteed to get you up on your feet dancing.
“I am so excited for the release of my new single and feel so immensely grateful for my fans and supporters. I attribute all of my blessings to God and I truly want to use my talent to bless others and I feel Country Music is just the conduit for which to do that. It just lifts you up and makes you smile and coincides with my personal views and history, and for me, my goal is that it hopefully does the same for my fans.”