For “Take The Keys” singer Leah Turner, music has been a part of her life since she was a little kid. “I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t singing or playing the piano,” she told

And specifically, it was country music that resonated. Raised in the Palm Springs/Palm Desert area by a California mother and cowboy father who was a professional team roper, she spent many weekends in the car on the way to or from a rodeo, absorbing songs by the likes of Trisha Yearwood, Clint Black, George Strait and Travis Tritt.

“You can say that country music was the very foundation and the thread that ran through my very existence,” she said.

You can hear that country foundation throughout her debut single “Take the Keys,” a song she wrote with Nashville songwriters Carey Barlowe and Jesse Frasure. The song just hit country radio this month.

While country music was in her blood, before she ever set foot in Nashville, Turner’s career actually took a rather serious detour through the pop world of L.A.–an experience that involved GRAMMY-winning producers and pop-music superstars, the sort of A-list encounters about which a young artist wouldn’t normally dare to dream.

But, in fact, it was quite real. As Turner explained, during songwriting class she was taking, she was given the opportunity to perform in front of Kenny Loggins. The pop star’s advice? Move to L.A. There she had another encounter that altered the course of her career. While in a restaurant with her mother, she by chance met Beverly Gatica, wife of producer Humberto Gatica–who works closely with another famed producer, David Foster.

“She [Beverly] wrote on an envelope and said, ‘Here’s my address, if you’re any good, I’ll give my husband your demo.’ So my mom was like ‘send it.’ And a week later, I was pulling up to David Foster’s home to record with him.”



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