Neel Pender has spent a lifetime as an entertainer. First picking up the guitar at the age of six, He played his first honky tonk with his musician father before he was 10 years old. Since then, Neel has written hundreds of songs, recorded in Nashville, and played countlessstages throughout the Southeast both as a bandleader and a solo performer.
Growing up in Dahlonega, Neel played in local bluegrass and rock bands as well as being active in school music programs. He was elected for the prestigious Georgia Governor's Honors program in music and completed additional music studies at Valdosta State University. After graduating from Lumpkin County High School in 1988, he moved to Tallahassee, Fla., to study music eduction and music theory at Florida State University. For the next 20 years, Neel made his home in Tallahassee and played nearly every club in the area, fronting such popular local bands as High Country, Bowlegged Rooster, Alibi, and the Forgotten Coast Band. He has also shared the stage as opening act with such nationally-known performers as T. Graham Brown, Dan Seals, and Colonel Bruce Hampton.
In 2012, Neel returned home to Dahlonega where he teaches guitar and voice and is currently developing the Neel Pender Project with longtime friend and musical collaborator Daniel Martin.