Rachel began performing in her teenage years in musicals. She played her first band gig in 1992 in Canberra, singing jazz standards at the much-loved jazz club Dorettes while in her first year of study at the Australian National University’s Canberra School of Music.
Upon graduating from the CSM in 1995, Rachel relocated to Sydney. She sang in a number of jazz bands, performing with many of Australia’s finest jazz musicians including Matt McMahon, Sean Wayland, James Muller and Bill Risby to name a few. Alongside her jazz performances, Rachel was making a name for herself as a singer-songwriter performing regularly at songwriter nights and popular music venues across Sydney.
In the late 1990s, Rachel devised and performed in The Best of Joni Mitchell, a tribute to the legendary musician (who is one of Rachel’s all-time favourite artists). The concert, featuring a stellar line-up of Sydney’s best singers and musicians, was a huge success and follow-up concerts evolved in later years.
Following a solo piano/vocal residency in Hong Kong in 2000, Rachel recorded an album of original songs, Leaving Traces, produced by ex-Frank Zappa drummer Chad Wackerman. Promotional tours to the USA and Canada ensued with the release of the album in 2001. Rachel released her second album Bright Window in 2003, produced by guitarist/songwriter/producer Sam Hawksley. In between recordings and tours, Rachel was performing regularly in Japan with bands comprised of American and Australian musicians.
Back in Sydney, Rachel continued to perform as a soloist, front person and backing vocalist in numerous bands. She became well-known as one of Sydney’s most in-demand solo singer/pianists, with performances at numerous prestigious venues. As a session singer, Rachel sang on recordings by singer Jeff Duff, bassist Steve Hunter, singer/guitarist Simon Kinny-Lewis, and singer-songwriters Sarah McGregor and Louise Perryman.
In 2003, Rachel and pianist Barney Wakeford created a tribute to jazz legend Billie Holiday titled God Bless’ The Child - The Songs of Billie Holiday, with sold-out performances between 2003 and 2006 at The Basement, The Vanguard, The Brass Monkey and local festivals, as well as at venues in the Blue Mountains and Bathurst.
In 2009, Rachel was Musical Director and one of the principal performers in JONI - A Tribute To The Legendary Joni Mitchell, a revamp and much larger-scale version of the concerts she had devised a decade earlier. Featuring a group of renowned singer-songwriters and a 12-piece band, the JONI concerts were a great success with sold-out performances at the Sydney Opera House Concert Hall, Melbourne's Hamer Hall and Brisbane's QPAC.
Since relocating to Queensland in 2011, Rachel’s musical focus has shifted primarily to teaching and composing, however she continues to perform on select occasions.
In 2001, Rachel auditioned for the Nine Network Australia TV show Star Struck and was subsequently invited to take part in the series. This is her first performance as a contestant on the show performing her original song Take Me To Ride with band accompaniment. Rachel was the winner of this episode and went on to perform in the series final.
Few artists have shaped the landscape of popular music as much as Joni Mitchell. Seven great Australian singers - Rachel Gaudry, Wendy Matthews, Kristin Berardi, Katie Noonan, Virna Sanzone, Tania Bowra and Louise Perryman chat about working together to stage a spectacular night of Joni Mitchell songs at the Sydney Opera House, Hamer Hall Melbourne, and QPAC Brisbane, 2009.
Following her first winning performance on the Nine Network Australia TV show Star Struck, Rachel went on to perform another of her songs, Don’t Push Me In, as a series finalist. Rachel was one of only a handful of performers in the series invited to perform original works.