Natalie Linnemeier, 16, came to singing and music from a somewhat different angle than some.
Rather than picking up music from a family member or a popular singer, Linnemeier discovered her talent through singing with a very famous Mattel doll.
“Ever since I was little I remember singing to the songs in my favorite Barbie movies and telling my mom that one day I am going to sing just like them,” she recalled. “My parents then put me in piano lessons in kindergarten hoping that I would like that just as much as I liked to sing.”
That indeed turned out to be the case, and Linnemeier eventually picked up the guitar, saxophone, drums, and ukulele along the way. Those early piano lessons began at the age of five with teacher Ann Fitchner, and her father got her started on the guitar before she moved on to teach herself more.
She also began writing songs at an early age. In a performance for family she developed the confidence to move on to more performances in front of larger audiences.
“My favorite moment of performing music would either be when I got to sing at my sister’s baptism when I was five or when I got to sing an original song I wrote at an open-mic about two years ago,” she said. “Singing at my sister’s baptism was special and memorable because it was my first performance alone and being so young and standing in front of the whole church with the mic really sparked my love for performing. To sing an original song at an open mic karaoke was really special because I realized that people actually liked what I wrote.”