KeKe Palmer Story – Chicago Sun-Times

5 Aug

This story was submitted to Chicago Sun-Times.  It was not published.



KeKe Palmer Singing at the Taste

© June 2008 Marcie Hill


Actress and songstress KeKe Palmer is coming home to sing at the Taste of Chicago.  She said that “it feels good to be coming home”, and plans to wow the audience with songs from her So Uncool CD during her first visit ever to the Taste.


Born and raised in the south suburb of Robbins, Illinois, Palmer moved to Hollywood with the grace and support of her family to pursue her dreams of acting and singing.  She “started out acting professionally before singing professionally” which is why, until recently, she was known more for her acting roles than for her singing abilities.


She landed her first commercial within six weeks of relocating as well as several guest roles on TV shows including Cold Case, ER, Law & Order, and The Wool Cap with William H. Macy.  She also won her part in Barbershop 2 with Ice Cube and Queen Latifah.


Palmer gained her fame and numerous awards from her role as the intelligent, inner-city spelling champion in the movie Akeelah & The Bee.  She also gained a huge viewer following in Disney’s TV movie Jump In.  Not only did she act in the shows, she had songs on both soundtracks. 


Her dream of being a professional singer became a reality with singles on several Disney soundtracks and the closing song for the Night at the Museum movie.  The release of her debut album So Uncool in 2007 was the icing on the cake. 


When asked about her feelings about her accomplishments thus far, she shared that “It feels very good.  It’s not normal to have done such great things in a short period in California.  There are some people that have been here for years and have only done a commercial.”  She has drive and determination.  But more than anything, she has confidence in herself, skills and abilities.


Her confidence is seen in her ability to be true to herself in the fast-paced world of entertainment.

She does not feel pressured to fit the entertainment industry’s standard of beauty because of her mother’s words of encouragement and confidence building.  “My mom raised me to know that I’m beautiful; to be humble.  She taught me to stand for what I believe in and to stand strong.” 


Palmer is coming to Chicago to give her hometown audience  a taste of her singing and dancing skills at The Taste of Chicago.  Catch KeKe Palmer along with Aly & AJ and A Cursive Memory at 2:00 p.m. at the Petrillo Music Shell on Sunday, July 6, 2008.


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