11 Questions to a Nashville Musician: Renée Wahl

Renee WahlIt’s been awhile since Renée Wahl’s 2011 debut LP, 2011’s “Cumberland Moonshine,” but after a 2016 EP, the singer-songwriter is now back with a follow-up LP, “Cut to the Bone” on March 15. Until then, you can hear two single releases from the record, “From Here to There” and “To the Bone” over at Spotify.

Labelled by some as “outlaw Americana,” it’s a badge this Air Force veteran and Physics major should wear proudly as a testament to her raw, honest and often dark sound. But as Renée says, “she writes from her heart, occasionally changing names to protect the innocent.” The new record was recorded locally and produced by Stuart Mathis. It also features some of the coolest tremolo guitar I’ve heard since those early Chris Isaak records.

We are thankful to Renée for taking time out for the 11 Questions. She will be taking the stage with her band the “Sworn Secrets” at 8:30 this Friday March 15 at everybody’s favorite small room, The Five Spot.


Where are you from originally, when did you move to Nashville and why?

I’m originally from Harrisburg, PA.  I moved here in 2007 while I was still in the Air Force.  I’d been playing music everywhere I was stationed and really wanted to come to Nashville, so I could learn more about the music scene.  I was really fortunate to get an assignment here.

What are the first and the last records you bought, and where did you buy them? Were they CD, vinyl or digital?

The first album I bought with my own money was The Cure’s Boys Don’t Cry.  It was a cassette, and I couldn’t begin to tell you where I bought it!  The last album I bought was Ted Drozdowski’s Coyote Motel in digital download format.

First and last live concerts that you’ve seen?

It was either The Monkees’ Reunion Tour or Cyndi Lauper.  I’m not exactly sure because they both occurred in the same year, and I can’t remember which happened first.  The last concert I saw was Chris Isaak at the Schermerhorn.

Whose star should be added to the Music City Walk of Fame?

Wanda Jackson

Where do you go in Nashville for coffee and pizza?

Dose in East Nashville.  I love their lavender honey latte.  Pizza’s a tough one for me in Nashville, but I’ve been digging BoomBozz pizza lately.

What’s your favorite record to ever come out of Nashville?

Where to begin?  I have no single favorite, but one of my fondest musical memories was listening to records with my mom and dad on Sunday afternoons.  My dad would put on record after record, and I’ll never forget hearing Skeeter Davis’ “The End of the World”, The Everly Brothers’ “(‘Til) I Kissed You”, and Roy Orbison’s “Crying.”

Where’s the best place to eat late night after a show?

Late night food in Nashville? I ask myself that same question all the time, and I never have a good answer.  On the road, I’m all about good 24-hour diners, but I never pass up a Wawa when I’m in the northeast.

The Bluebird calls and asks you to host an “In the Round.” Pick three local songwriters to join you.

There’s so many!  I’d love to do a Bluebird round with Amelia White, India Ramey and David Olney.  I have so many brilliant songwriter friends that it really is difficult to narrow it down to just three.

What are your favorite music venues to play in town?

The 5 Spot, Radio Cafe and the newish True Music Room in the Cambria Hotel.

Name a musician who you’d like to see move here?

Chris Isaak recently moved here, so I’m good with that!

Finally, what’s in your musical future?

Touring, writing, touring, writing and more recording!

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