MARQUETTE - One night, Ishpeming resident Shawn Beaudry heard music coming from his daughter Casey's room.
"I thought she had the radio on," he said.
But Casey, who's now 17, was the one playing the guitar and singing on that evening two years ago.
Casey Beaudry sings and plays guitar at her home in Ishpeming. The 17-year-old has performed in a number of plays and at area
festivals. (Journal photo by Danielle Pemble)
"My Dad was always wanting me to learn how to play the guitar, but at that time, I didn't want to take lessons," Casey said. "So one night two years ago when I was home alone, I went on YouTube and watched a video. The song I learned was 'Teardrops on My Guitar.'"
From that first song, Casey's come a long way, now performing at such events as Blueberry Fest and Seafood Fest. She's entertained at the Ramada Inn and is looking forward to another gig she has on her schedule.
"My grandma (Jackie Beaudry)'s Red Hat Ladies group is going to have me play at a meeting," she said. "That's going to be fun. They follow me and what I am doing."
Casey, who is the daughter of Sherri and Shawn Beaudry and has an older brother, Riley, does not suffer from stage fright.
"I love performing," she said. "Even if it's just in the corner of a little bar. You don't know if anyone's paying attention and then there's the faint applause.
"I love the sound as it comes through the mic. I love when there are new strings on my guitar," she said. "I love performing."
She's an active teen. She's the president of the Ishpeming High School Key Club and is president of the school's Class of 2011. She's on the GRIMN (Gwinn, Republic, Ishpeming, Michigamme, Negaunee) swim team and is in the chorus at IHS.
"I have been in three plays at school and plays outside of school, too," she said. Those include productions by the Peninsula Arts Appreciation Council and Marquette Arts and Culture Center.
"I really liked 'Anything Goes'," she said when asked for her favorite play so far. "I liked my character. I got to speak with an accent and tap dance and sing and wear cool clothes."
Casey started in music as a youngster as part of Lake Superior Harmony and loved everything about performing, including at her church, St. Joseph's in Ishpeming, as a cantor.
With all the other activities she's part of, Casey's still making music a priority.
"I am self-taught on the guitar and I have been thinking about taking lessons, but I don't like dissecting music," she said. "I guess we'll see."
Country is her favorite genre.
"I don't have an idol, but I do look up to the girls, Miranda Lambert, Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift," she said. "I want to get started songwriting. It's great to share other people's music but it would be great to write my own.
"I'm a big lyrics girl and quote lyrics all the time," she said.
With high school graduation just around the corner, Casey knows she's coming to a crossroads in life.
"I got into Western (Michigan)," she said. "I might go there or maybe to Northern. Or maybe I won't go to college at all. Should I be a dietician or a musician? It's a hard question right now."
Shawn Beaudry is in charge of booking his daughter's gigs.
"This year, she's really put herself out there and has played at some bigger events like Seafood Fest and Blueberry Fest," he said. "Casey's got an amazing voice and she's really learning a lot."
Renee Prusi can be contacted at 906-228-2500, ext. 253. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.