Rachel Rising

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by Dana Urrutia

Rachel Farley already knows what she wants to wear when she”s inducted into the Grand Ole Opry. "I love the dress Patsy Cline wore when she was inducted. I keep looking at that picture." She”s very quick to laugh at herself, "I know, I know…But that”s my goal."

Just 14, Rachel”s got time to make plans, but even at this early stage in her career as an aspiring singer-songwriter, no one else is laughing. Instead, many who hear her sing are convinced they”ll someday be able to say, "I knew her when…"

Dressed in workout clothes, with her hair in a ponytail and a smile adorned with barely-visible braces, Rachel looks the part of a typical Gwinnett teen. But it”s the powerful voice, a "born on stage" presence and an old-soul tone that convince folks this girl”s for real.

“It”s Not Glamorous”
Chasing the dream has now become a way of life for this high school freshman from Lawrenceville, with the full and active support of her parents, Jeff and Larissa, and three brothers, Chase, 15; Jamie, 7; and Jackson, 3.

Rachel”s first public performance – singing the National Anthem for 1,000 – was at age five. She then continued to perform at school and church and in musical theater around metro Atlanta. It was a juggle with lots of late rehearsals, and even later nights to finish homework. In early 2007, the Farleys decided to take a different tact. Rachel had participated in a talent convention and had received a lot of call backs, mostly for acting possibilities. Connecting the dots in the music world led to a meeting with a Nashville producer. After that conversation, says Larissa, they realized that Rachel”s career dream would require changing life as they knew it.

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