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“She did it on her own terms:” Richard Wilkins remembers soul singer Renee Geyer in touching tribute

Saying goodbye to a ''true artist''.
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Australian singer Renee Geyer will be remembered as a “talented” and “ballsy” artist to Nine’s Entertainment Editor Richard Wilkins.

On January 17, 2023, Renee tragically passed away at the age of 69, after her family revealed there had been complications from a hip surgery.

“She was always on my top 10 and will remain there.”

(Image: Getty)

While speaking to 9Honey, Richard tributed the singer’s amazing talent that challenged the music industry.

“She had such an amazing voice, such power, such range, such emotion in her voice, you know? You could smell every drop of whiskey in her voice, songs like Stares and Whispers and Heading in the Right Direction,” he said.

However, their friendship was not without its struggles, with Richard revealing Renee was not afraid to go into battle over her profession.

“She always used to give me a hard time if I saw her and I hadn’t been kind enough, in her eyes, as to her latest endeavour – a song, an album or whatever,” Richard said.

“She did it on her own terms.”

(Image: Getty)

“She would always give it to me. She’d go ‘Oi you!’ and she’d call me up. She would always be very positive and aggressive about her work, and I loved her for that.”

Renee rose to fame during the ‘Countdown era’ and Richard believed she was a “true artist” who eschewed the norm within the Australian music industry during the 70s and 80s.

“She never really embraced the industry,” he said. “She did it on her own terms.”

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“Hers was a voice for the ages and in a different time and a different place, she should have been a global superstar.”

Although it had been nearly a decade since Renee released her last album, Swing, Richard affirmed “us oldies” still “love her and respect her”.

“Whenever I’ve been asked over the years ‘Who are the best singers in Australia or the best voices?’ I’ll obviously always include people like John Farnham and Tina Arena, and Renee Geyer was always one of my favourite picks.

“She was always on my top 10 and will remain there.”

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