by LIZA MITCHELL
Rachael Warfield will sleep when she’s dead. The blonde ingénue has too many irons in the fire to slow down now. A modern-day Renaissance woman with a superhuman work ethic, Warfield will complete her degree in International Business this summer, launch a college circuit and radio tour as well as perform on the main stage at the George’s Music Springing the Blues Festival.
“I just don’t sleep,” she says. “It’s incredibly exhausting, but it’s an incredible journey.”
The Rachael Warfield Band will open Saturday’s festivities at noon on April 6 at the SeaWalk Pavilion in Jacksonville Beach. In addition to playing her unique blend of blues, soul and funk, Warfield has the distinguished honor of performing the National Anthem.
Warfield’s penchant for performing dates back to a time when “Girl Power” dominated the Billboard charts. “I knew I wanted to be a performer when I was singing the Spice Girls,” laughs Warfield. With her grandmother’s encouragement, she combined her passion for writing poetry with her love of singing. The final result would serve as her introduction to songwriting. “I started writing, and I never stopped.”
Now 23, Warfield has an impressive music catalog and a wealth of industry experience for such a young artist. The Jacksonville Beach native attended Douglas Anderson School of the Arts, where she studied vocals and piano before recording with producer Tony Coluccio. By age 17, Warfield had a proper demo and the support of a growing team of independent music reps.
“To make it as an independent artist, you have to be a good musician, but you also have to be a strong businesswoman,” she says. “You can be a successful artist without a record deal. I’m grateful to have learned all these things.”
When the door opened to perform for thousands in her own backyard, Warfield says she was struck by her own good fortune. Growing up in Jacksonville, Warfield was always a fan of the George’s Music Springing the Blues Festival and dreamed of one day taking the oceanfront stage. She found a worthy ally in Sam Veal, who booked Warfield to perform at the 2013 Great Atlantic Seafood Festival and held her spot in this year’s blues festival.
“My heart definitely jumped. I’ve always said I wanted to perform at the blues fest, and now I can,” she says. “It’s such a huge festival, and I am so appreciative.” To find out more about the festival, go to www.springingtheblues.com.
by LIZA MITCHELL