Irene remembers first hearing country music in her dad’s basement TV Repair workshop as a girl. That music in her family home resonated in her soul, so when Irene started writing songs, she already had a head start. At 15, she began her journey as a professional musician in a rock band.

Bringing a Dolly Parton album to rehearsal to have the band learn a few of those songs to cover would get Irene fired on the spot. It was, perhaps, the best thing that happened to her.