"Letting Go" is Cheryl Branz' 3rd studio album release. Produced by John McVey at Coupe Studios in Boulder, CO this album finds Cheryl breaking through to new heights in her musical journey. She performs throughout the region armed with her acoustic guitar, versatile voice and engaging personality. Once described as "Rachel Ray with a guitar" Cheryl is known for songs that range from the heartfelt to the hilarious.
Cheryl's been singing most of her life. One of her earliest performances was an a cappella rendition of Debby Boone's "You Light Up My Life" in her 3rd grade talent show. She proudly sang every verse, every chorus and the bridge. She was unstoppable. In the 5th grade, Cheryl started playing the flute as part of a school band requirement. In hindsight, this was a poor instrument choice as it was impossible to play and sing (or talk) at the same time. In the 9th grade, Cheryl switched from band to choir in order to be in a class with more of her friends (not to mention the cute male choir teacher) and that's when singing started taking over her life.
Cheryl has paid her musical dues through the years in school choirs, community choirs, church choirs, a cappella choirs, musicals, performing for weddings and funerals, and even singing backup in a band. She holds a Vocal Performance Music Minor from the University of Northern Colorado. Yet it wasn't until 2001 (inspired by other singer/songwriters such as The Indigo Girls, Jewel and Sara McLachlan) that she picked up a guitar for the first time thanks to an ad she saw for a Spokane adult continued education class that had the headline, "Have you always wanted to play the guitar?" Yes! Yes she had.
She honed her guitar skills by performing in a female folk trio and a male/female duo performing cover songs and working on her own songs before breaking out solo in late 2005. Cheryl's debut cd, Disappear, was released in 2006 and features her spot on vocals and honest lyric style. From the upbeat, carefree, Flip Flops to the emotional ballad on adoption, Waiting On A Miracle, Cheryl sets the stage for her listeners to become a part of the music.
Following that successful release, Cheryl took her skillful vocals to new heights in 2009 with "The Christmas Gift" - a collection of holiday favorites. Combining her talents with award winning producer Tom Prasada-Rao, the two created a perfect soundtrack for the season blending elements of folk, jazz and classical styles in one seamless package. From the prayerful Ave Maria to the playful Santa Baby the cd captures a classic, timeless feel of superior musicality. Cheryl was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest and the original song, Skating, on "The Christmas Gift" was inspired in part by the winters there. Written for her mom, who was a professional skater in the Ice Capades, Skating speaks of the hopes of a young girl with a big dream...a fitting parallel for the now grown up singer/songwriter Cheryl Branz.
And, if you've read this far, there's one other piece of information that might be fun to know. Cheryl is not a full time musician. She is the proud second generation owner (along with her husband) of a family business - Jim Custer Enterprises. In her day job, she goes by Cheryl Custer-Branz. Jim Custer Enterprises has been a fixture in the Spokane region for almost 40 years producing incredibly popular consumer show events, including the Spokane Home & Yard Show. If you'd like more details about this part of Cheryl's life, please feel free to visit www.CusterShows.com