Jacob René grabs attention. Whether it’s with his love of glitter, or the way he tickles the keys while belting out a pop tune, he doesn’t disappoint. At 27 years old, the “Texas Pop” star promises creative innovation and expression, with a classic flair.
René’s love for the classics really shines in his pop-rock banger, “Memories.” Autobiographical by nature, you can hear him channeling his inner “Axl Rose” as he tells his story of life in Odessa, TX, and his newly-found confidence as a performer in the “Live Music Capitol” of Austin, TX. He describes his sound as not being the “manufactured” dance-driven sound that’s typically on Top 40 radio, and a little more “gritty,” which he has dubbed, “Texas Pop.” “It’s Austin’s blues-rock sound through a pop lens. It’s the marriage of the Red River District, and the Warehouse District,” he describes. It’s his lyrical honesty, and love for Pop music that sets him apart from his indie-rock peers in Austin, who he says, “welcomed him with open arms.”
His life has been no “bed of roses,” and his upcoming E.P., “Watch Me,” tells some of those tales. From drug abuse, to coming out in West Texas, he hopes to inspire those who have a dream to go after it with reckless abandon. “There’s something in it for everyone,” he says. “I just wanted to create great Pop songs that were vulnerable, and honest. It’s my first E.P. so that was very important to me.”
Being Latino, and part of the LGBTQ community in Texas is something he is very proud of. His southern twang, and Tex-Mex heritage speaks to many in the “Lone Star State,” and beyond. While always proud of where he came from, he hopes to spread a message of love, and inspire bravery to all who hear his music. “Everyone’s invited to this party,” he says. “As long as you bring some love to share!”
Growing up in Odessa, he felt his only way out was through education. He started his musical training at 3 years old, and went well on into his college years until he decided to drop out to focus on pop-stardom. While in college he was a very active member of GRAMMY U, a music industry development entity led by The Recording Academy, which gave him endless networking opportunities, and connections to the music industry. It was then that he decided to quit school, and move to Austin.
After a few failed attempts at getting booked for major events and festivals, Jacob found his audience through the Austin open-mic circuit. Playing at venues like Gourdough’s Public House, and Little Woodrows, he met performers who were more about friendship than competition. “For once, I met performers who cheered each other on, and didn’t see each other as a threat,” he explains. “Performers in that circuit praise each other for their talent, and it isn’t this cliquey-superficial bullshit. There’s love there, and I feel it every time I perform with those cats.”
Aside from performing, the singer-songwriter is staying busy wrapping up his upcoming E.P., “Watch Me,” due this fall, and creating content for future projects. From co-writing to co-producing, he makes sure to be involved with all creative aspects of his music. His plan is to create a legacy he can be proud of, and to bring everyone along for the ride. “I don’t care how many heads are involved. As long as my heart is navigating, I’m good,” he says. “I went through a lot of shit to tell my story, and I’m gonna tell it.”
There’s nothing stopping this young star. Keeping his eye on the prize, his focus and optimism are sure to take him very far. For more Jacob René, click on the SoundCloud link to check out his new single, “Memories.” Stay up to date at http://www.jacobrene.com