LARGO, Fla. — Roger L. Renaud, 74 , of Montello Street, Lewiston, and Largo, Fla., died Friday, March 31, shortly after arrival at Largo Medical Center.
He was born in Lewiston on Sept. 10, 1942, a son of the late Robert and Simonne Beaudoin Renaud. He attended Lewiston High School. He was a member of the East Auburn Baptist Church. His father being a musician and his mother a big band singer, it is was no surprise that Roger was born with a musical aura around him. He was considered to be the music patriarch of Maine. At age 6, he picked up a trumpet and after a few lessons, it was clear he found a passion that would endure until his final day. He began performing as a child in St. Cecile’s Marching Band at St. Mary’s School in Lewiston and then with the Tempomen at Lewiston High School where he intuitively mastered the sax, trombone, flute and piano. His musical soul took him to every genre of music, especially jazz.
His first group, “The Flairs,” was formed in the ’70s when he celebrated not only his talents but showcased the talents of many other musicians who became urban legends in their own rights. He built a studio in his home. taking on students in private lessons as well as teaching in various schools with some of his students going on to Julliard for classical study. He taught himself the art of synthesizing, recording albums and playing his own backup tracks. Still again, Roger went on to reinvent himself later in life, performing and singing in many venues such as the Poland Spring Resort, various clubs, nursing homes and with many groups in Maine such as the Moondawgs where his saxophone added a new depth and complemented the talent of other musicians. He has performed with musical legends such as Guy Lombardo and Bill Haley and the Comets. His career in his senior years was comparable to what one would see Tony Bennett draw from his audience: appreciation, nostalgia and a love that only this type of performer possesses. Having the gift of perfect pitch, he discovered his voice and started singing solo and with other professional singers. He was also a sought-after taps player in Maine where he played for many veterans groups.
During his lifetime, his perfection overflowed into his day job as well. As a hand sewer of high-end shoes, his expertise brought him to European capitals to demonstrate his skill in upscale boutiques and department stores.
Most important, Roger was always overjoyed to share his music with his entire family: his three children, his stepdaughters whom he embraced as his own, brother and sisters, grandchildren, nieces, nephews and cousins. He had his own mini music festivals at his home, summer barbecues, Christmas parties, any type of celebration with music as the backdrop, bringing happiness to family and friends. His music was an extension of his love which he used to embrace his family at every opportunity.
He is survived by his current wife, Carol Renaud, who was his biggest fan and promoter; his children, Steve and wife, Wanda Renaud; daughter, Doreen Cote and partner, Roger Naous; son, Tony Renaud; his stepdaughters, Kim Everidge and Melissa Saucier; brother, Normand and wife, Suzanne Renaud; sister, Pauline and husband, Tom Pirrone, of New Jersey; and sister, Patricia Clark; many grandchildren, nieces, nephews and cousins.
Roger was predeceased by his nephew, Parrish Renaud.
Online condolences at www.thefortingroupauburn.com.
Roger L. Renaud