Renee Olstead

Renee Olstead

4.9 18
by Reneé Olstead

Back in 2002, producer David Foster oversaw the debut disc of a young jazz/pop singer named Michael Bublé. With his handsome looks and Sinatra-like voice, Bublé quickly saw his star begin to rise and the success of his disc kicked off a mini-revival of old standards and big band singers. Striking while the iron was hot, Foster fed the flame by…  See more details below


Back in 2002, producer David Foster oversaw the debut disc of a young jazz/pop singer named Michael Bublé. With his handsome looks and Sinatra-like voice, Bublé quickly saw his star begin to rise and the success of his disc kicked off a mini-revival of old standards and big band singers. Striking while the iron was hot, Foster fed the flame by introducing an even younger female counterpart to Bublé. Reneé Olstead was a 14-year-old actress mostly known for her co-starring role in the CBS television series Still Standing, but while acting has been her day job since childhood, Olstead has also dabbled in music. Unlike Bublé, who was studying classic songs at a young age with his grandfather, Olstead first latched onto traditional country music and at the age of ten and released Stone Country, which found her singing mediocre tunes in a hiccuped, down-home accent. Four years and a 180-degree turn later, Olstead discovers her inner ingénue with the assistance of Svengali Foster and released her major label debut of pop and jazz standards. The results have the same lovely, glossy sheen that Foster tweaked to perfection on Natalie Cole's Unforgettable album, and Olstead's newfound voice is a vast improvement from her faux twang days. With a voice that is reminiscent of Nicole Kidman's singing debut in Moulin Rouge, Olstead sounds more like a young, bubbly starlet than a newly discovered diva. There is no question that she has a pretty voice and is more than capable of performing undemanding standards like "Taking a Chance on Love," however, her voice lacks the depth and experience truly needed to tackle more difficult song like "Summertime" or "Sunday Kind of Love." In taking on Barry Manilow's "Meet Me, Midnight" she dives in with gusto but ends up barely treading water mid-song with a scat section that sounds uncomfortable and forced. Age is certainly a factor in making these songs sound convincing and, for the most part, Foster smartly chose songs that do not reach too far beyond her young years. This helps to make a song like "Someone to Watch Over Me" sound like a sweet, teenage fairy tale. On the other hand, the sensuality of Maria Muldaur's "Midnight at the Oasis" is far too mature for her to grasp at this time. She does much better on the Norah Jones-styled original "A Love That Lasts" as the song's quiet demeanor compliments Olstead's vocals, making her sound comfortable and natural. It is going to take more time and experience for her to sound as convincing on songs like "Is You Is or Is You Ain't My Baby," but Foster has given her a great crash course and that helps to make her debut disc a pleasant listen. Reneé Olstead has a solid foundation from which to work and if she can continue building up from there, she just might have to set aside her acting career for a while.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Reprise / Wea


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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Reneé Olstead   Primary Artist,Vocals
Alan Broadbent   Piano
Brian Bromberg   Bass
Billy Childs   Piano
Jeff Hamilton   Drums
Rick Baptist   Trumpet,Soloist
Chris Botti   Trumpet,Guest Appearance
Dennis Budimir   Guitar
John Clayton   Bass
Vinnie Colaiuta   Drums
Joe La Barbera   Drums
Warren Luening   Trumpet
Dean Parks   Acoustic Guitar
David Tull   Drums
Carol Weisman   Vocals,Guest Appearance
Chris Dawson   Piano
Don Shelton   Alto Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Billy Childs Trio   Piano
Peter Cincotti   Piano,Vocals
Gerald Clayton   Piano
Don Shelton   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone

Technical Credits

George Gershwin   Composer
Louis Prima   Composer
Neil Sedaka   Composer
Barry Manilow   Composer
Brown   Composer
Louis Jordan   Composer
Jeremy Lubbock   String Arrangements
David Foster   Producer,Audio Production
Vernon Duke   Composer
María Mendez Grever   Composer
Frank Loesser   Composer
Stanley Adams   Composer
Oscar Castro-Neves   Arranger
John Clayton   Arranger
Humberto Gatica   Producer,Engineer,Audio Production
Ira Gershwin   Composer
Bud Green   Composer
Howard Greenfield   Composer
Ben Homer   Composer
John Latouche   Composer
David Nichtern   Composer
Fred Norman   Arranger
Alejandro Rodriguez   Engineer
Bruce Sussman   Composer
Julian Peploe   Package Art Direction
Bill Austin   Composer
Barbara Belle   Composer
Ted Fetter   Composer
Carol Weisman   Arranger,Vocal Arrangements
Dorothy Heyward   Composer
Billy Childs Trio   Arranger
Neil Devor   Programming,Engineer
Ellen Wakayama   Art Direction
Linda Thompson   Composer

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Renee Olstead 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Such a pleasure!. This voice as it matures should go down with the greats such as Nancy Wilson, Dakota Staton and others of that era. It's hard to believe that this 14 year old voice can project that kind of emotion. Meet Me, Midnight, amazing. Who knew that a 14 year old knew what scat was, much less lay down a scat line.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If ever there were a debut album to set the bar ridiculously high for other young singers it's gotta be Renee Olstead's self-titled CD. To get an idea how amazing Olstead's talent is, take the soaring voice of Eva Cassidy, mix it with the sultry sound of Norah Jones, add in the sweetness of Doris Day and top it with the verve of Christina Aguilera ... and that's just where Renee's exceptionally nuanced style begins. Though she's still in high school (!) her singing career is about to take off like a rocket. She's already been pegged for superstardom by savvy music industry insiders who know a phenomenal talent when they hear one. Several of the songs will be break-out hits if given adequate airplay, especially her captivating remake of Maria Muldaur's "Midnight at the Oasis." If "Renee Olstead" doesn't collect an armful of Grammies I will be flabbergasted!
Guest More than 1 year ago
She is totally amazing. Her appeal will be to all ages.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is an absolutely amazing collection of music from a singer who will be HUGE in the very near future. I bought one for my own collection and three more for gifts (two for Father's Day). Miss Olstead's voice is rich, sultry, and intoxicating. I'm a fan from way back!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I listened to the entire CD collection online (Renee's website) and fell in love with her voice. She is truly a wonderful singer, especially for her age! I plan to go out and get the CD for my own collection. It is truly wonderful to hear.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I first heard this CD while in a Barnes and Noble store. I bought it on the spot. This CD is geat!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Renee Olstead's CD is really great. Jazz with a twist, I give this CD two thumbs up and would suggest buying it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Renee Olstead is absolutely gifted. I love every single song on her CD. This is what Mariah Carey should be doing. I'm willing to bet that Renee Olstead is on her way to becoming a big star. I can't wait 'til she puts out her next CD.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Love her voice...I have to play it over and over again...I keep watching for her next CD..hope to see more of her on TV!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Awesome, she makes beautiful music. So relaxing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
At age 14, Renee is a vocal masterpiece. She redefines the classic jazz standards with a style that is all her own.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Just discovered Renee' Olstead! Why isn't everyone talking about Renee' Olstead? Awesome voice, style & wonderful feeling for the music. Would like to see more of her & eager for the next CD.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I watch Renee' on Still Standing and enjoy her acting as well as the show itself..Her voice is unbelievable and I know she has a great future ahead of her.I wish her the very best.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ms Olstead has one of the most amazing voices I have heard in ages. I never tire of listening to the exquisite range and control this young lady has. I am looking forward to more from her.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I first heard Renee sing on Still Standing and I could not tell if it was her singing or not, but the voice stayed wth me. Then I was watching Princess Diaries 2 a few years ago and heard A Love That Will Last and I could not get the song out of my head. One day I googled the movie's sound track and played the song, then I googled Renee. I had no idea it was the same person until I played Summertime and then it hit me. She's AWESOME!!! Her voice is so soulful and rich. It's hard to believe that she is so young. Renee took classic music that she probably heard her parents play and made then her own and she did a great job. I think what a like the most about Renee's music is you can tell she feels what she singing, it's soulful so in turn I feel what she's singing. That is so important to me when I listen to music and there are only a handful of singers that I can say that about. I mostly listen to jazz (instrumental) but Renee has definetly been added to my list of greats. I can't wait to see what she does next.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago