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In a span of two decades, 11 recordings and countless stage performances, vocalist René Marie has cemented her reputation as not only a singer but also a composer, arranger, theatrical performer, and teacher. Guided and tempered by powerful life lessons and rooted in jazz traditions laid down by Ella Fitzgerald, Dinah Washington, and other leading ladies of past generations, she borrows various elements of folk, R&B, and even classical and country to create a captivating hybrid style. Her body of work is musical, but it’s more than just music. It’s an exploration of the bright and dark corners of the human experience and an affirmation of the power of the human spirit.
René composed and sang her first piece with a band when she was 15. But she put her musical aspirations aside to make room for the obligations and responsibilities of adulthood. When she was 41, her older son convinced her to start singing again, and she took a few tenuous steps into her local music scene, singing for tips one night a week in a hotel bar. She released her first album, Renaissance, in 1999. Her 2013 release, I Wanna Be Evil: With Love To Eartha Kitt, earned a Grammy® nomination in the Best Jazz Vocal Album category.
The newest installment in her ever-expanding body of work is Sound of Red. Her first album of all-original material, Sound of Red comprises 11 songs—some of them autobiographical that provide insightful glimpses into the many small but profound turning points that are part of an individual life. René’s clever songcraft and sensual vocal delivery make those personal moments not only meaningful but enlightening to a broad audience.