Meridian, Miss. Meridian has launched many talented artists into the music world, particularly in country music. A hometown girl brought her powerful voice back to Meridian from Nashville last Friday night to open for country star Ronnie Dunn at the MSU Riley Center.
Cheryl Luquire grew up in Meridian singing every time she had the chance. Now she has a publishing deal in Nashville and is living her dream of writing and performing music. She took a little time after her performance to tell us more about her journey.
Cheryl Luquire has been described as one part Faith Hill, one part Aretha, but she says she's just a small town country girl with a big passion for music. Luquire graduated from Lamar School in 2005, and later from Belmont University in Nashville. One of three sisters, she says growing up in Meridian was pretty special. Her faith, family and friends shaped her busy childhood. "A lot of my time in Meridian was either on a soccer field, basketball court, or singing in church, " Luquire reminisced. "I even did swim team here. I was very involved. I even did a Meridian Little Theater play, The Wizard of Oz. I got to be one of the girls who fixed Dorothy's shoes!" She continued, "It's a lot of Jimmie Rodgers competitions. I was singing in a homemade two-piece suit that my mom made when I was six. Gospel music, country music. It's always good to come back home. I've got good memories here."
The 26-year old has just celebrated her first anniversary with talented husband Adam Stark, whom she loves to perform with. Big things have been happening for Luquire. She signed last year with Sony-ATV Music Publishing, and she's opened for many big names, including Wynonna, The Band Perry, Josh Turner and more. But she says, coming home to sing was something special, "Oh, big, big anticipation coming back to Meridian," said Cheryl. "I've been gone for eight years, so to come back and play the Riley Center is a first for me. Walking in for sound check, I was shocked. I didn't know we had this type of Center for Art and Music in my hometown! And I think it's literally one of the prettiest places i've seen while being out on the road."
Luquire just released a new EP last week. It's self titled, "Cheryl Luquire." Watch part two of our conversation with Cheryl Luquire Wednesday night at 6:00 and 10:00. You might be surprised to find out what the talented young artist has to do with the National Rifle Association.