Soulful singer-songwriter Frankie Parker launches her new year show with a private promotion in Chicago.
Parker will perform cover and original R & B songs from 6 to 9 p.m. Jan. 17 at Close Up 2, a contemporary upscale jazz venue located at 416 S. Clark St. in Chicago. "Breezy," the title track of the new album she's working on, will be debuted. Admission is $15 at the door. For discounts available and information call (847) 845-3463.
Parker was raised in the church, Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church in Harvey, and on gospel music. "My father bragged about how I had my first recording when I was 5 years old," she said. Parker attended rehearsals of Christian Fellowship, a local church group with her aunt and uncle, and often sang with the ensemble. "I only vividly remember the clothes I had to wear," she said of the experience.
"But from that point on my parents said I was a ham," she said. "I did ballet, tap and tumbling at Susan's School of Dance in South Holland."
But it was music that continued to be a constant in Parker's life, encouraged both at church and at home by her parents. She made the decision to take singing seriously while attending Thornton Fractional South High School. Focused on academics, she discovered a love for writing and English, which evolved to writing music and lyrics.
Parker made her first visit to Chicago's House of Blues with the high school's Multicultural Club. Her second visit was an opportunity that came up soon after when a vocal group scheduled to perform a brunch show at the Chicago venue was short a singer and Parker was asked to fill in.
"On the way there I learned four songs, I knew the other three or four I guess," she remembered. "For me to go back there was crazy and from that point on I said I can do this."
Parker attended Columbia College in Chicago and has been working as a solo artist for the past four to five years.
She now lives in Chicago Heights with her husband, Damien, and their 11-month-old son Miles.
She's grateful for the gift she's been given and the opportunity to share her love and talent with others.
"It's liberating," she said of performing. "It's perfection. It makes me feel complete. I'm at a level of perfection, where I need to be."
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